Micronesia Medical Insurance
The Federated States of Micronesia is comprised of a group of islands located in the Pacific Ocean. The country is situated about 800 kilometers East of the Philippines, and 4,000 kilometers Southwest of Hawaii. The country consists of 607 islands grouped into four States, namely Kosrae, Pohnpei, Yap, and Chuuk. Micronesia covers about 702 square kilometers of land area. It once belonged to a part of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands under the administration of the United States. In 1986, Micronesia became an independent country.
The climate in Micronesia is mostly maritime tropical, with little seasonal or daily fluctuation in temperature. The average temperature is usually around 27°C. The country has two distinct seasons namely the dry season and the rainy season. The dry season falls between December and April, while the rainy season lasts from April to December. It rains most heavily between July and October. Monsoon season can hit Micronesia from July to mid November; sometimes Monsoons can cause heavy damage and flooding to the country.
In the Federated States of Micronesia, the Department of Health and Social Affairs oversees the country’s healthcare services. Their mission is to promote and protect the health status and the social welfare of all the citizens and residents living in Micronesia. The Department of Health Services in each State is responsible for maintaining its own healthcare services, primarily medical, preventive, and public healthcare services.
In every State of Micronesia, there is a hospital located in the urban central area, which provides primary and secondary levels of medical services to its residents and citizens. The medical services include both medical and preventive services. The responsibility of the State involved healthcare services covered by main hospitals, as well as primary and secondary health centres. All citizens are entitled to receive healthcare services at the hospitals, however, a small fee may apply. In general, only residents living in the urban areas have direct access to the main hospital in each State, the reason being that transportation is often an issue, resulting in residents who live on the outer islands having limited access to these hospitals.
Both Government-owned and privately owned health facilities are available in Micronesia. There are four Government-owned hospitals and five health centres in Micronesia, while there is also one private hospital and six private health clinics in the country. In Micronesia, healthcare services are largely subsidised by the State Governments except in the private clinics and hospitals. Healthcare expenditure in Micronesia accounts for approximately 6.5% of the country’s GDP. Some of these Government-owned healthcare facilities at times lack basic supplies and medicines. The quality of healthcare is unstable and the standard is often inconsistent. Doctors and hospitals normally expect immediate cash payment for any medical services rendered.
The private healthcare sector in Micronesia is small. As the costs associated with private medical care are often higher than State healthcare, this sector is mostly supported by only a small group of people who can afford to pay out-of-pocket for the medical services, or they have put in place their own insurance policy. Since most of the people in Micronesia cannot afford private healthcare, the majority of the citizens of Micronesia rely heavily on the State Government for free healthcare services.
It has always been a priority of the Micronesian Government to develop and improve the healthcare workforce of the country. There are shortages of healthcare professionals in the State hospitals and health centres. Moreover, there is a low number of nursing schools and specialty training programs available to train both doctors and nurses. Although the Government has attempted to address this issue partially through overseas fellowship training programs, serious constraints on the ability to grow the healthcare workforce have yet to be resolved.
The standard of the healthcare in the Micronesia is not quite on par with the standard that some foreigners are used to at their home country. Moreover, medical healthcare is available mainly only in urban areas in the Micronesia and access to healthcare in the remote areas and outer islands are very limited. The distances between the islands are normally very far and there is no low cost frequent public transport service that runs between the islands. In cases where patients are seriously ill, sometimes they are required to transfer to medical centers overseas, however, transportation may poses a problem as some of the closest countries to Micronesia are thousands of kilometers away.
For visitors and expatriates who are looking for peace-of-mind knowing that medical costs will be covered in the event of an accident or illness for yourself and your family while travelling to Micronesia, purchasing a comprehensive travel insurance or an expat medical insurance plan will be the optimal solution for you. This will cover any overseas medical costs, but you may need to check that it includes cover for medical evacuation in the event of a serious illness or accident.
We offer a wide range of policies to meet your individual needs, including benefits such as dental, maternity, inpatient, outpatient, specialist consultations, and many others. . Contact our professional advisers today to enjoy full insurance protection such as an Expat Health Insurance Plan for yourself and your family.