Do You Need Medical Insurance When Visiting the USA?

Pankaj wasn’t able to control his excitement and thrill. It was the first time anyone from his entire kin had managed to visit the United States of America. But he didn’t have the slight idea that soon this excitement was going to transform into a state of worry. He was trying to cross a busy lane in New Jersey, when he met an accident with a fast-moving truck. He opened his eyes in a highly equipped hospital in the city. But the idea of the expenses that will incur in his treatment in the absence of a medical insurance was making him gloomy.

Also read: Should I buy medical insurance when visiting USA?

Medical Insurance is Mandatory When Visiting America

Although it is not necessary to have health insurance to receive a B1/B2 visa, not having medical cover in the US can leave you without any option but to pay your own medical costs, which are steadily escalating in America. In 2015, Forbes published that the Health Care Costs in the US were rising faster than inflation. Increasing demand for medical care, which ultimately raises prices of medical devices, drugs and hospital care, was believed to be the major reason for the skyrocketing costs, with medical devices being the primary contributor.

Individuals travelling to the US for business purposes or simply for leisure are advised to buy visitor’s medical insurance prior to their travel. Given the fact that health care costs are so high, especially for Indian converting the rupee to the dollar, those who are uninsured may even be refused by the health facilities if they cannot produce insurance papers.

Many people do not buy visitor’s medical insurance, believing that they are in the best of health. However, given how uncertain life is, where anyone can fall sick and even meet with an accident, it is better to stay protected than to regret later at leisure.

Where to Buy Medical Insurance From?

Don’t fall for travel agents who force you to buy a medical policy along with the purchase of airline tickets, just to earn their commission. There are many reputed health insurance companies in India who offer great coverage at affordable rates. Shop around and find the one that suits your needs and budget the best. Here are a few prominent names of medical insurance providers in India:

  1. HDFC ERGO General Insurance Co. Ltd.
  2. Reliance General Insurance Co. Ltd.
  3. ICICI Lombard General Insurance Co. Ltd.
  4. TATA AIG General Insurance Co. Ltd.
  5. Star Health and Allied Insurance Company Limited
Also read >  Star Health Travel Insurance Review - Should I buy it?

As mentioned above, it is not necessary to buy a medical insurance to be eligible for a visa. This means that you can also choose to buy the medical policy from a company at your destination, the United States. To know about the best medical insurance in the US, read more here.

When buying medical insurance, you can opt for travel insurance with health cover, which also covers you against non-medical emergencies like loss and theft of baggage, flight delays and more, other than protecting you against medical emergencies. Make sure that the sum insured is sufficient to cover for the medical and non-medical expenses of any kind unforeseen sickness or injury, loss and theft.


Hi, Mani Karthik here. Having lived in USA, India & Middle East, and worked for big MNC’s to startups, I have a lot to share with you. My aim is to help people, by sharing everything I’ve learned in life, through this blog. It’s read today by more than 150K people world over! I currently live in LA, California and visit India occasionally. Here’s my full story on who I am and why I blog. Connect with me on FacebookInstagram, Twitter or WhatsApp (+001-408-489-4785). Happy to help! 🙂

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