With so many different international health care policies available today, it can be difficult to pick out the best policy for your health care needs. In combination with all of the different insurance companies offering insurance, there are also many different health care plans to choose from.
There are a few important factors to consider before you purchase your next international health care policy:
Price Isn’t Everything
The cheapest policy may not provide you the best coverage. It is not possible for one insurance company to offer the exact same coverage for less than half the cost of another insurance company. Often times, you are not comparing apples to apples. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
The benefits offered, and more importantly, the benefits that may be excluded, can make a big difference in your costs and the quality of care you get if you become injured or ill. Some of the products out there look and sound like health insurance, but actually do not provide comprehensive health insurance coverage. Here are a few to watch out for:
“Dread Disease” Policies
“Dread Disease” policies pay only for costs related to stated, specific diseases, such as cancer. This is very dangerous coverage as none of us know what kind of disease we may be hit with in the future. Unless you have a crystal ball telling you what you what illnesses you are going to contract in the future, it’s best to have comprehensive coverage. In fact, some states have banned the sale of “Dread Disease” policies and in 2014, under Obamacare, all policies must include a range of health care coverages.
“Accident Only” Policies
“Accident Only” policies pay only for care you need as a result of an accident that isn’t due to illness. The reason the premiums are so low on these policies is that it will only cover accidents and not illness. A good comprehensive policy will cover costs associated with accidents as well as illness, so accident only policies are not a good value.
“Discount” plans are not health insurance and therefore are unregulated by insurance regulatory agencies. Today, some state insurance regulators and attorney generals have issued alerts warning people not to purchase discount medical plans. The reasons for this are that they do not protect you from high medical expenses and reports have been made to their claim payment history, not offering the discounts represented.
“Stacked” policies are where insurers combine products, or stack them together, to patch together a comprehensive health care policy. However, an accident only policy combined with a dread disease policy may sound similar to comprehensive health care coverage, but it isn’t.
To be sure that you will be covered no matter what health care emergencies come your way, it’s best to pay for comprehensive, international health care coverage.