New Job. New City. New Life.
Isn’t it exciting? Anyone that finds themselves relocating this summer, be they individuals or families, have a lot to contend with. Dealing with removal companies, change of job, house hunting, school hunting and leaving family and friends can all make the move a little stressful and daunting. However, once everything starts to settle down again, an exciting new chapter in life begins.
What we could do without is falling ill or suffering an injury shortly after moving to a new town. In this article, we will highlight five of the main reasons why it is crucial to have health insurance for you and your family after relocating.
1. Varying Standards of Medical Treatment
If you are relocating to a country with low living standards, you can be sure that medical standards will not be as high as you are used dealing with to back home. In such cases, medical treatment provided by government or publicly funded facilities will not meet international standards and will be considerably lower than what you and your family are accustomed to. To ensure a reasonable standard of medical care is provided, there may be little option but to seek treatment at a private medical facility. Without a suitable health insurance plan, that can prove to be very expensive.
2. Waiting Times
Say, for example, you or a family member suffer an illness or injury shortly after arriving at your new home. Without medical insurance, the high cost of treatment at a private facility means you would need to visit a public facility or hospital for treatment. Public medical facilities in most countries around the world are blighted by bureaucracy and long delays for operations and other specialist treatment. As such, and depending on the illness in question, you may be required to wait a certain amount of time before seeing a local specialist or consultant. These waiting times can last for months and are an added inconvenience.
3. Medical Costs
Rising medical costs are a global phenomenon, affecting countries and regions everywhere. The cost of standard treatments, consultations, surgeries and particularly in-patient treatments have all risen rapidly in recent years. It is the high cost of in-patient treatment, in particular, which makes investing in a private health insurance plan so important. A routine illness which requires one or more nights stay in a hospital can quickly run into the hundreds or even thousands of dollars, not the most ideal way of starting your new life after an already expensive relocation.
4. National Health Insurance Schemes
Most countries provide their citizens with a national health insurance plan. These schemes are often mandatory and citizens are obliged to join and pay into the fund. In return, they receive subsidised medical care. Expats, however, are often excluded from these schemes and are not eligible to join. Additionally, in some countries, expats are not entitled to use public medical facilities for treatment. This simply reinforces the argument that expats should hold comprehensive private health insurance coverage regardless of which country they are going to live in.
5. Benefits of Private Health Insurance
The main benefit to holding private medical insurance is peace of mind knowing that if an unforeseen illness or injury was to happen, you can use your insurance to access high-quality medical treatment. Some medical insurance providers may also allow a policyholder to choose the medical facility of their choice for treatment. In many cases, the cost of an annual premium is negligible in comparison to high medical costs for specific or specialist treatment.
Lastly, countries that do not permit expats to use public medical facilities, such as some of those in the Middle East, are making it compulsory for expats to hold private medical insurance coverage before they can become long-term residents. Policies such as these ensure that expats receive medical coverage as and when it is needed, which is important for every expat that is in the process of relocating.
Pacific Prime works closely with both local and international insurers and offers expert independent advice to help you find the perfect insurance solution to suit your needs. If you and your family are about to, or are considering relocating to a new country but are unsure about your insurance options, our team is always happy to help and can be easily reached at any of our international offices. For more information, or to receive a free quotation, speak to one of our advisors.