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Tuvalu Health Insurance

Medical insurance for those living or working in Tuvalu. Customized Tuvalu health insurance plans and quotes available.

  • Tuvalu Medical Insurance

    Tuvalu is a stunning tropical paradise offering an exclusive island getaway in the Pacific. Formally known as the Ellice Islands, Tuvalu is the forth smallest country in the world. With a land mass of only 26 km² Tuvalu is only larger than Nauru at 21 km², Monaco at 1.95km² and Vatican City at 0.44 km². The country lies just west of the International Date Line, and close to 1,000 km north of the Fijian islands. Tuvalu is built up of six separate atolls and three islands spread out along a northwest-southeast chain that is 676 km long. It is a remote and untouched corner of the Pacific that offers a peaceful and non-commercialized environment, which would be ideal for rest and relaxation. Tuvalu’s capital is the island of Funafuti, which is also where the international airport, and a large portion of the population is located.

    The Tuvalu islands came under British control in the late 19th century. It was administered by Britain as part of a protectorate from 1892 to 1916, and then from 1916 to 1974 it was a part of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands Colony. Tuvalu became an independent constitutional monarchy within the Commonwealth as of 1978. Since its independence the Tuvaluan economy has depended mainly on the Tuvalu Trust Fund (TTF) and proceeds from the sale of Tuvalu’s internet address, “.tv” The TTF was set up in 1987 with contributions from New Zealand, Australia, Japan, South Korea, the United Kingdom and Tuvalu itself. As of 2010, Tuvalu became the largest contributor and the TTF had reached approximately AUD$100 million. These contributions are invested overseas and the returns are used to meet the Tuvalu Government’s expenditure. The countries exports are limited and its remoteness makes importing goods, and distance to markets financially challenging.

    The health care system within Tuvalu is administered and regulated by the Ministry of Health (MoH). The health care sector is extremely small and is funded through regional and international donor agencies and partners. 2008 was a year of health reform for Tuvalu, with the creation of a new healthcare plan to direct the work of the MoH over a 10-year period from 2009 to 2019. The Strategic Health Plan 2009-2019 and has provided the MoH with an improved focus on primary health care and disease prevention. As of 2010 the health workforce of Tuvalu was comprised of 7 physicians and approximately 54 trained nurses. Human resources still remain to be a major weak spot and challenge to health service in Tuvalu.

    In 2008 and 2009 the MoH secured funding from the Japan Grassroots Projects to build new medical centers within Tuvalu. The MoH was able to build medical centers on Vaitupu, Niutao, and Nui Islands. These centers will improve the delivery of medical care in the outer islands, with improved facilities for inpatient care.

    The Princes Margret Hospital is the only hospital in the country and is located in the capital of Funafuti. The outer islands have clinics that are staffed by trained nurses. The hospital offers slightly better services, being staffed with both doctors and nurses. The medical facilities are generally adequate for routine medical treatment. Although limited medical personal make the health system highly susceptible to issues with surge capacity. A majority of the tourists and expatriates visiting Tuvalu use medical evacuation to other countries to obtain higher quality of medical care.

    The Princes Margret Hospital is the only hospital in the country and is located in the capital of Funafuti. The outer islands have clinics that are staffed by trained nurses. The hospital offers slightly better services, being staffed with both doctors and nurses. The medical facilities are generally adequate for routine medical treatment. Although limited medical personal make the health system highly susceptible to issues with surge capacity. A majority of the tourists and expatriates visiting Tuvalu use medical evacuation to other countries to obtain higher quality of medical care.

    Dengue fever is the main infectious disease that has a real presence in Tuvalu. While vaccinations for typhoid, hepatitis A & B, and rabies has been recommended by the WHO before visiting Tuvalu there is little presence of these diseases. Take preventative measures from being bitten by mosquitoes to avoid catching dengue fever. Malaria, though usually among the culprits of mosquito borne diseases, is not present in Tuvalu.

    Tuvalu is a small country in a remote location, making travel to and from the country limited and difficult. Civilian airline transport only travels to and from the international airport 2 times during the week, since March 2011. Considering the options for medical evacuation from the country of Tuvalu is extremely important. Medical air evacuation to Fiji or Australia from Tuvalu will be required if a person is injured or has become ill in any serious way. Discuss with an international health insurance provider about your options with medical evacuation from Tuvalu.

    There is a caution for male homosexual couples traveling to Tuvalu. Like some Muslim culture countries in the world, homosexuality between males is illegal. Any adult male to male sexual interaction can result in a minimum penalty of seven years imprisonment. Though homosexual relations between women are legal and will have no ramifications from the justice system of Tuvalu.

    The National Bank of Tuvalu on Funafuti is the country’s only bank, which accepts several major currencies for exchange. The Australian currency is the legal tender, though there are also Tuvaluan 10c, 20c, 50c and $1 coins. Apart from the National Bank there is also a Western Union branch located on Funafuti that can be used for money transfers. It is recommended for travelers and expatriates to take enough currency with you to cover your trip. As of January 2011 there are no ATMs and no credit-card facilities available in Tuvalu.

    Pacific Prime Insurances is an international health insurance brokerage, and can offer a variety of medical and travel insurance policies, with optional benefit packages including dental, maternity, outpatient, inpatient, specialist consultations, and many more. If you are concerned about finding more information about travelling to Tuvalu, or to receive a free Health Insurance Quote, feel free to contact one of our dedicated advisors today.



 
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