5 Reasons why expats choose International Health Plans

Contributed by Cigna Global, 30 August, 2016

When relocating to a new country, it's important to secure peace of mind in as many aspects of your new life as possible; and ensuring that healthcare will be available for you and your family is a must.

A good health insurance cover is important no matter where you are, but why do expats opt for International health policies instead of local policies?

Cigna Global, a specialist in expat healthcare, explains the main reasons why International Private Medical Insurance (IPMI) policies are so important for expatriates to ensure their wellbeing abroad.

  1. Limitations to immigrants

    As you leave your home country, you will realise you also leave certain comforts that were available to you as a national. How will you, as an expat, gain access to health services in your new home?

    As a foreign national, you may not be entitled to any free or subsidised healthcare. In some cases you may need permanent residency before you can enter the system – and that could take years. It is therefore important to consider an expatriate health plan to provide for the healthcare needs of you and your family.

  2. Difficulties with public health care

    A common problem with most public healthcare systems is that the coverage provided is not all-encompassing. Furthermore, most countries' healthcare schemes struggle to attend the needs of all the population, which usually translates in long lines and waiting times for residents trying to get treatment.  

    If you are eligible to subsidised healthcare, it's essential to understand the repercussions of your coverage. Both expats and nationals around the world frequently opt for purchasing a private policy to complement the basic cover granted by public healthcare, and to gain complete and immediate access to the best healthcare services in the country.

  3. Gaps in your policy

    More often than not, expats are sent abroad by an employer and covered under the company's health insurance plan; however, as one size almost certainly does not fit all – the coverage provided by an employer is hardly ever the right policy for most.

    If you are covered under a company's health insurance plan, find out exactly what your plan covers. Is your family included in the policy? Does it provide international coverage? Do you have any pre-existing conditions not covered by the policy? IPMI policies help expats to choose a comprehensive cover to fill the gaps in their employment plans.

  4. The benefits of worldwide coverage

    Globally mobile citizens often require an international plan to cover them in the many countries they frequent. Some expats leave their country with travel insurance in place, but the problem with travel policies is that these are designed for short stays, and cover only for medical emergencies.

    IPMI policies are also a great help against the language barrier. Understanding your policy documentation and being able to talk to a customer service representative is vital when dealing with your health queries. Many expats are more comfortable with an international health insurance company that offers support in English or another familiar language.

  5. Flexibility to choose a plan for your needs

    IPMI policies usually allow you to choose a plan to accommodate particular needs. Benefits vary from supplier to supplier, but some include unlimited annual benefit limits, Inpatient care, day patient care, cancer care, and maternity care.

Cigna Global have created a products suite specifically designed for expats just like you. Their plans can be tailored exactly to the needs of you and your family, with the flexibility to choose from three distinct levels of cover, and five optional additional benefits, including outpatient care, medical evacuation, and vision & dental care. Full cancer care is included as standard in Cigna Global plans, and their top two levels of cover include maternity cover.

Visit Cigna Global for more information on International Health Insurance and to get a free no-obligation quote.

Tags: Health Insurance | expatriates | Insurance | services | public health | insurance | health care |



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