Given the sky rocketing medical costs in the US, more and more travellers are investing in good travel insurance to prepare themselves against unexpected medical emergencies they may face during their travels. According to a report published by Allied Market Research, Travel Insurance Market by Insurance Cover, Distribution Channel, Users, Geography – Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast, 2014-2022, the travel insurance market is expected to generate $28,264 million by 2022, growing at a CAGR of 8.5% during 2016 – 2022.
There is nothing more relieving than to know that no matter what medical emergency you face in a foreign land, it will not turn into a financial crisis as well.
However, what if you are already have a disease that you might not be aware of? What if the symptoms of that disease show up suddenly, while you are enjoying your trip? The idea of knowing you have a disease isn’t as terrifying as realizing that you are not covered for it.
Travel Insurance Plans That Cover Pre-Existing Conditions
Before we proceed, I should tell you that any medical condition is called pre-existing if the person is aware of it, has undergone or is undergoing treatment for it. The person may be taking medication for it. Most travellers above the age of 60 suffer from some kind of pre-existing ailment, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney problems, asthma, allergies, or even something as serious as cancer.
There also are people who are suffering from pre-existing conditions like hypertension and diabetes but have been stable for a very long time. They might be confused about whether to invest in travel insurance that offers coverage for pre-existing conditions.
However, while travelling internationally, what if you need to be hospitalized due to the aggravation of an already existing condition? It will put quite a hole in your pocket.
How to Qualify?
Unfortunately, there are no travel medical insurance plans that fully cover pre-existing conditions. Even insurance companies that provide coverage for pre-existing medical conditions do so only when they are sure that your condition is “stable,” taking certain factors into consideration, which may vary according to the policy provider.
Travel insurers offer coverage for emergency situations that arise due to pre-existing conditions that are life threatening till the patient gains relief from acute pain and achieves a stable condition.
Here are a few insurers who provide cover for pre-existing conditions:
- Atlas America: Atlas America is a great travel insurance plan that provides coverage for acute onset of a pre-existing condition up to the policy maximum for visitors under the age of 70.
- Cover America-Gold: Covering travellers under the age of 80, Choice America-Gold offers coverage for acute onset of a pre-existing condition up to $125,000 for travelers under the age of 70 and up to $30,000 for travelers aged 70-79.
- Liaison Continent: Liaison America offers coverage of up to $25,000 per policy period for acute onset of a pre-existing condition to non-US citizens under the age of 65, and up to $2,000 to those between 65 to 69 years of age. The plan also covers US residents under the age of 70.
- Patriot America Plus: Patriot America Plus is a great choice for non-US citizens below the age of 70. The plan covers acute onset of a pre-existing condition to the policy maximum for eligible medical expenses.
What’s Not Covered?
Most overseas travel insurance plans do not cover for dental treatment/surgery unless it requires hospitalization, while also not covering the cost of spectacles, contact lenses and hearing aids, intentional self-injury, venereal disease, use of intoxicating drugs/alcohol, expenses for diagnosis, x-ray or laboratory tests and AIDS. Travel insurance will also not cover for treatment related to pregnancy or child birth, including caesarean section.
I would advise travellers to invest in travel insurance that offers coverage for pre-existing conditions for greater peace of mind and to save money, if anything goes wrong.