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Wealthy (no) Wise (not really) and Healthy (Yes!)

Discussion in 'Medical issues on the pilgrimage' started by scruffy1, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. scruffy1

    scruffy1 Veteran Member

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    The tragic/miraculous Camino attempt of Annette london, one which skudded to a halt and included the ambulance-helicopter-medical flight home hopefully was covered by their health insurance. Her narrative was amazing and caused me to think back. My only medical incident concerned a bout with bronchitis which struck me down with 40 degree fever and I could hardly talk for a week. My medical insurance covered the visit to a doctor and the antibiotics and I was soon on my way again. To the point, I have met more than a few pilgrims with no insurance citing something perceived as an unnecessary expense, trusting to providence, I suppose, that all will be well. Not such a splendid idea. Most travel insurance policies allow you to carry it on your phone – now should one be laid up with 40 degree fever and speechless or perhaps flattened by a runaway garbage truck, this is not a great idea either. Take both, by all means one on the phone but also a printout kept next to your passport which the medics will need to see in any case. A policy locked into your phone or tucked away with the laundry in the bottom of your backpack is like traveling with no insurance in a real emergency. Trusting you will never need to use it so Buen Camino.
     
  2. Mike Trebert

    Mike Trebert Guest

    Cardiac and vascular conditions can be very difficult, if not impossible, to get insurance for. Pre-existing conditions are not popular with insurance companies. My health is very much under control, but an underlying genetic problem means that I travel with very limited medical insurance. In some circumstances, one must be very well informed and learn to take detailed precautions.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 18, 2017
    SabineP likes this.
  3. I don't know what you mean by "carrying one's policy". I supose you mean carrying its company name contact information and policy number and not the full 67 pages of so deacribing the coverage.

    I keep the email with the 67 pages on my smart phone, but in case I am not conscious, I also have the companipy's name, contact info and policy number as part of the info on the photo I use as my screen saver/background screen so that the info is there for anyone who finds my phone to see without needing a password.

    I also include my name, email addy, home phone, emergency contact person and their email and phone number, as well as citizenship and passport number.
     
  4. Annette london

    Annette london Active Member Donating Member

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    Hi scruffy,
    You are so right about having insurance
    And yes our safe return was indeed a miracle....am sweating even now at how we managed it

    Although we did have full coverage for trips abroad ......we didn't use it...
    "Himself" was being stubborn and wanted to come home.

    Our daughter booked us an ordinary flight and back we came
    U.K. Ambulance and hospital from our house...
    After the "I'll have a cup of tea first" nonsense.....and.the "are you serious"?

    And yes we took a chance and I fed him aspirin and carried both rucksacks on the way home

    Right or wrong...I don't know
    But here we are thank god
    I don't even want to think about it.

    As we live in the European Union,we could have gone to Pamplona hospital ....and received free care .....as....
    All EU countries have reciprocal agreements with each other ....as have Australia and New Zealand....I believe

    However I have heard recently that some European countries are not adhering to this principle including parts of Spain......due to the economic situation there,and although not legal......do insist on payment up front.

    Our private insurance would have covered this anyway.

    The problem is that although European health care will cover illness in a hospital or clinic....for Europeans.....it will not cover repatriation to ones country ...eg...broken leg where 2or more airline seats may be required ...and also if a dead person needs to be taken to their home overseas.....

    And this is where insurance would be necessary to have ....for everyone!!
    It's not worth the risk ...not having insurance

    Scruffy......I have beaten myself up ...over and over again re how this episode of ours was dealt with
    As I said ....he could be in a box right now
    What can I say?
    Best wishes
    Annette
     
    domigee, FLEUR, C clearly and 2 others like this.
  5. Diane Kinney

    Diane Kinney Active Member Donating Member

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    Hi Mike.
    You are right many preexisting conditions preclude coverage with private/group policies. Check to see if your credit card provides you with coverage and what if any exclusions there are with travel insurance provided by the airline.
     
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  6. Annette london

    Annette london Active Member Donating Member

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    Hi Mike
    In the UK ..insurance for travelling abroad is called Travel insurance and comprises of health insurance...holiday cancellation...loss of baggage .delayed flights .loss of money.Death of someone close and the need to return back home etc etc ..it's all covered under one umbrella .
    I get the impression from the forum in general that in USA and Canada ." health insurance" is dealth with as a policy on its own and policies for loss of luggage etc have to be taken separately....

    I might be wrong on this one though

    Our sainsburys travel insurance covers us for all of the above including walking at altitudes

    It's possible here to get covered for all medical conditions....including cancer and heart conditions ....but the price will be high....but it is possible and available
    It's also possible to exclude some of ones conditions and that will bring the price down
    With best wishes
    Annette
     
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  7. movinmaggie

    movinmaggie Veteran Member

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    No matter what your age??
     
  8. Mike Trebert

    Mike Trebert Guest

    Thanks Annette and Diane,

    I do organise travel insurance to cover all kinds of potential problems. The package includes a medical component but it's limited to exclude pre-existing conditions. I have to be careful to limit myself to falls, getting run over by bicycles, and choking on potato frittata.

    I learned last time that I could have had free insurance if I'd paid for my air ticket with my credit card. Will certainly do that next time.
     
    Annette london likes this.
  9. Annette london

    Annette london Active Member Donating Member

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    Hi movinmaggie
    Yes that's right
    The U.K. Ones I know about

    Saga ...

    Free spirit ..
    Stay sure ...

    Say...all medical conditions covered
    No upper age limit!!
    The cost might be high though

    Might be different in the USA and Canada

    So.....

    Time to get movin again Maggie!!!

    Best wishes
    Annette
     
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  10. movinmaggie

    movinmaggie Veteran Member

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    Just got back Tues Annette from a lot of movingon the Great Glen Way in Scotland.....simply gorgeous! You lucky folks in the U.K. who get great value for tvl insurance. Although, through the help of a forum member here in Victoria, BC, I found very reasonable insurance, given the age factor. Still pondering the Primitivo:rolleyes:
     
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  11. VNwalking

    VNwalking Veteran Member Donating Member

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    I hope you can go easy on yourself, Annette. 'Should have' stories are alluring don't take into account all the unknowns that are only clear in retrospect. Bottom line is 'himself' is OK, which is all that matters.
    Wishing speedy healing to him, and ease for you in the midst of it all.

    And regarding the OP: travel insurance is an easily forgotten detail in the run-up to leave, but don't. And make sure you read the fine print of the policy before you buy. Cheap policies are cheap for a reason (I've learned the hard way about this...)

    (BTW, Welcome back from your walk, @movinmaggie !)
     
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  12. Annette london

    Annette london Active Member Donating Member

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    Thank you Viranani
    Kind words
    Annette
     
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  13. JNast

    JNast New Member

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    Found travelers insurance here in USA through AMFam if you don't have an Agent for American Family Insurance let me know l will share Jennifer's information privately with you.
     
  14. An issue with having to call the North American company from spain using a cell phone with a pay-as-go card: 1800 number not recognised so you need a good balance left to contact the company and tell them to call you back.
     
  15. Carlos Santiago

    Carlos Santiago Member

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    Insurance is like buying a fire extinguisher. You pay a seemingly useless expense and pray that you will never have to use it.
    I vote for "Wise".

    Thanks for the reminder to make it visible.
    :)
     
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  16. FLEUR

    FLEUR Active Member

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    U.K. travel insurance as Annette rightly says, does cover health and other holiday crisis. If one visits a hospital while in France the European health card takes care of this. In my experience no payment required up front but they billed later for part of the stay. ( this mostly refunded via Newcastle DWP ) If you visit a doctor while in France you need to pay immediately this applies also for any blood or urine tests that the Dr. might request. All this expense can be claimed back later. Same with any drugs prescribed.
    Just posting French experience here, might be useful for anyone on the routes through France.
     
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  17. movinmaggie

    movinmaggie Veteran Member

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    When I had to visit a Medical Clinic in Spain for a bout of bronchitis, they did bill me, because there was no procedure to pay at the time of service. When I returned to BC, Canada and received the invoice, I opted to mail back a money order in Euros, rather than fill out a 26-page form, then deducted the expense on my taxes.The service was excellent and my limited Spanish was very helpful.
     
  18. mvanert

    mvanert Member Donating Member

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    I also have the same info on my lock screen as i have medical issues and want whoever needs to see important info about me they can. It's a smart thing to do and highly recommended whether you have pre-existing conditions or not.
     
  19. Walton

    Walton New Member

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    Just looked the Australian list of reciprocal countries at https://www.humanservices.gov.au/customer/services/medicare/reciprocal-health-care-agreements

    The list is as follows (cut and pasted)

    The Australian Government has Reciprocal Health Care Agreements (RHCA) with:

    • Belgium
    • Finland
    • Italy
    • Malta
    • the Netherlands
    • New Zealand
    • Norway
    • the Republic of Ireland
    • Slovenia
    • Sweden
    • the United Kingdom
    And for each of these countries, there are additional requirements listed on the Humanservices web page.

    No France, Spain or Portugal unfortunately.

    Travel insurance is an essential must buy item in my opinion, however one must take the time to laboriously read all the fine print and if there are pre-existing medical issues perhaps you should consider disclosing this before you buy, in order to find out exactly what your chosen insurance provider will and won't cover.

    Hope this helps

    Graham
     

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