What is international health insurance?
International health insurance is a policy that covers people across borders. It entails the same risks as domestic health insurance policies, but with the benefit of applying abroad.
Some countries already have agreements in place that mutually cover their citizens when traveling. For example, the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) covers EU and Swiss nationals for healthcare within those countries. However, for travel further afield, travelers from the EU may choose to insure themselves with an international health insurance policy.
What does international health insurance cover?
International health insurance covers the policyholder for similar risks that a regular health insurance policy, or social security, covers. Like all kinds of health insurance, the range of covered issues varies from policy to policy and price to price. Below are a few examples of the common risks that international policies cover:
- Emergency treatment
- Planned surgery
- Visits to the doctor
As the level of cover can change depending on the policy, other risks can be included, such as:
- Maternity leave
- Dental care
- Pre-existing conditions
Who uses international health insurance?
In general, international health insurance is aimed at people who spend a substantial amount of time out of their home country. They generally go on short, but frequent journeys to other countries or live abroad for a substantial, yet temporary time. Examples of profiles that use international health insurance include business travelers, expats staying in a foreign country for a year or more, or even holidaymakers who travel often.
For expats who permanently reside in another country, it is much cheaper to simply get health insurance in the country of residence.
How is international health insurance different from travel insurance?
The main difference between international health insurance and travel insurance are the risks that are covered. While the former concentrates solely on health, the later includes health, lost luggage, and other travel-related risks.
Is international health insurance better for business travelers or holidaymakers?
This kind of health insurance is equally relevant to business and leisure travelers. The only determining factor is the frequency of journeys abroad.