Travel Team | Jun 8, 2022
No one wants to think about it, but a medical emergency can happen on vacation. The big question is whether you know what to do during a medical emergency, especially if you’re traveling overseas. How would you find a doctor and be sure you’re getting appropriate care? What if you don’t speak the same language as your doctors and nurses? How would you pay your medical bills? What if you need to be evacuated so you can receive appropriate medical care?
You prepare for everything else on your trip, from scouring the internet for the best flight deals to meticulously packing your bags. It only makes sense that you plan just as thoroughly for the unexpected. This includes illness and injury while traveling. And while you can’t anticipate what, if anything, will happen, you can be prepared with Seven Corners Travel Medical Insurance.
Travel medical insurance is always recommended, especially if you’re traveling internationally. Your domestic health insurance often doesn’t cover you outside your home country, and although some health insurance companies may cover life-threatening emergencies abroad, their definition of life-threatening may be far different from yours.
The way to fill this gap is with travel medical insurance. Not only does travel medical insurance help with bills you may incur if you get sick or hurt while traveling, but it can also include other benefits such as emergency medical evacuation as well as non-insurance benefits like travel assistance. We'll share more details on each of these below.
It’s also important to note that some countries require travel insurance to visit. The requirements may include COVID-19 coverage, which is provided in Seven Corners Travel Medical plans.
Seven Corners customers have taken advantage of travel medical insurance for a range of injuries and illnesses, from stomach bugs and sprained ankles to broken backs and altitude sickness, which just goes to show that anyone could need travel medical insurance. Here are a few stories of what can happen with and without the right coverage.
Daniel and Felipe, a couple from Canada, were traveling on a month-long trip through Southeast Asia. While in Myanmar, Felipe contracted a rare stomach virus, which left him hospitalized. Scared his partner needed a higher level of care than he was receiving
in Myanmar, Daniel called Seven Corners for assistance.
In less than 24 hours, and while working on a 10.5-hour time difference and communicating through a language barrier in rural Myanmar, the Seven Corners Assist Team secured Felipe’s evacuation via air ambulance to Thailand, where he was treated in a state-of-the-art medical facility by doctors within our network.
Because of the couple’s travel medical purchase, Felipe’s illness was covered by insurance, as were the additional costs of emergency medical transportation to Thailand and their return flights home. Our Seven Corners Assist team also made sure Daniel and Felipe could travel together during the evacuation.
Watch Daniel and Felipe’s story in their own words:
Daniel and Felipe are the perfect example of why travel medical insurance is worth the cost. Not everyone makes the same decision to purchase travel insurance, however, and in some of those cases, it doesn’t work in their favor.
Kevin, a high school girls' basketball coach from Indiana, was swimming in the Dominican Republic, when he was pounded by a rogue wave. He hit the sea floor and broke several bones in his back. Unfortunately, Kevin didn’t have travel insurance. This meant his family had to scramble to create a GoFundMe to ease some of his $27,000 in medical expenses.
Kevin isn’t alone. Alex, also from Indiana, fell 30 feet from a retaining wall while vacationing in the French Alps and shattered his T12 vertebra. His bills were expected to top $100,000. And he, too, was uninsured. His family also relied on a GoFundMe campaign to cover the charges.
When these sorts of accidents happen, the bills can be astronomical. Some can reach upwards of $200,000, which can be financially devastating. On top of that, the stress of navigating a foreign health care system and quickly finding the care you need can make the situation feel even more dire.
With Seven Corners Travel Medical Insurance, emergencies like these and many more can be covered, both financially and through travel assistance services. To understand what is covered, we recommend reading your plan document and contacting the Seven Corners sales team if you have any questions. Here’s a high-level overview to get you started:
If you're traveling in the United States, our travel medical plans include the option to use a network to find a doctor or medical facility for care.
If you're traveling outside the United States, Seven Corners maintains an international directory of medical providers. The Seven Corners Assist Team can search our extensive network of providers for the most appropriate medical facility for you to receive care.
Sometimes the most appropriate medical facility isn’t in the same country you’re visiting. In these extreme cases, when deemed medically necessary, our Assist Team will arrange an emergency medical evacuation and coordinate your care with medical staff to make your transition as comfortable as possible.
Evacuations can be via plane, helicopter, train, bus — whatever best fits your situation — and can be covered by your travel medical insurance to reduce the financial burden of your transport. Seven Corners must make the arrangements for the evacuation to be covered.
Medical care can get expensive, as we saw from Alex and Kevin’s stories above. With travel medical insurance, however, expenses incurred as a result of your treatment can be paid in part or full, depending on your plan and situation.
Unlike in the United States, some countries require proof that you will be able to pay for your treatment before any care can be provided. You don’t want to be stuck trying to collect enough cash up front to cover your treatment. Instead, travel medical insurance offers assurance to medical providers that they will be paid, so you can focus on getting well.
We’ve already hinted at this non-insurance benefit a few times, but when you purchase Seven Corners insurance, you get 24/7 access to our travel assistance team. When it comes to medical emergencies, our Assist Team will help you find appropriate medical care when and where you need it, arrange for translation services so that you can communicate with medical staff, coordinate an evacuation, and even assist with non-medical emergencies such as finding an embassy or replacing a lost passport.
Travel medical insurance can be an important purchase for removing some of the worries about traveling abroad. Contact Seven Corners’ licensed travel insurance agents for more and to get the best travel insurance for your next adventure.
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