In our previous article “MedEvac plans for Expats – Pros and Cons” we explored the advantages and disadvantages of this type of coverage, and as mentioned at the end of that article, we will answer in detail the question of whether a MedEvac plan is the solution for all unforeseen medical expenses. So here we go…
While having a MedEvac plan is better than having no coverage at all, it’s essential to understand its limitations and the potential financial risks involved if it’s your only plan.
The Limitations of Medevac Plans
MedEvac plans, also known as Medical Evacuation plans, are designed to transport you to the nearest suitable medical facility in case of a severe medical emergency. They are not comprehensive insurance plans, and their coverage is limited to emergency evacuation services only, although some plans include ground ambulance as well. But these plans do not cover hospitalizations, surgeries, procedures, regular medical treatments, doctor’s visits, prescription medications, or, in general, any expenses related to your health other than transportation.
Authorization to fly
Just because you have a MedEvac plan does not mean you can use it in all emergency situations. In order to be flown in an Air-Ambulance, a qualified doctor from the hospital in which you are must approve it first. If they consider that flying you to a different location could worsen your current condition, they will inform the MedEvac providers, and you will have to spend more days in the hospital, or maybe not flying at all.
Paying Out of Pocket for Medical Expenses
If you rely solely on a MedEvac plan and encounter an emergency medical situation, you’ll be left paying out of pocket for those expenses. These costs can quickly add up, and medical services in Mexico can be very expensive depending on what type of emergency it is, leaving you financially vulnerable. Let’s say for instance you have a heart attack; the stabilization expenses range anywhere between $40,000-$120,000 USD in a matter of days. And that’s just the stabilization, so if you were to need a pacemaker, stents, or other subsequent treatments/procedures, all of that must be covered by you.
A heart attack is just an example of unforeseen medical events that could threaten your financial stability. But it could also happen with a stroke, a severe accident, sepsis, COVID, etc.
The Importance of Private Health Insurance
To safeguard yourself against unexpected medical expenses, it’s crucial for expats to have good private health insurance. By carrying a good insurance policy, those savings that you have for your retirement won’t be at risk and they can actually last a lifetime.
A comprehensive plan provides coverage for a wide range of medical services, including routine check-ups, doctor consultations, prescription medications, hospital stays, and more. Having such insurance ensures that you have access to the medical care you need without the fear of exorbitant out-of-pocket costs.
Factors to Consider when Choosing Insurance
When selecting health insurance as an expat, consider factors like coverage options, the network of hospitals and doctors, premium costs, deductibles, limitations, and exclusions. It’s advisable to choose a plan that aligns with your specific needs. For example, if you carry a MedEvac plan, perhaps the most comprehensive health insurance policy isn’t what you need, and instead, you could get a basic or catastrophic-only plan. This could save you a lot of money whilst having good protection for your health.
While a MedEvac plan can be a useful addition to your healthcare as an expat, relying solely on it for medical coverage is risky and potentially expensive. Investing in comprehensive health insurance provides you with peace of mind, knowing that you’re protected against a wide range of medical situations, not just emergencies. Prioritize your health and financial security by choosing the right insurance plan to ensure a worry-free expat experience.
For more information on our Expat health insurance plans, contact one of our brokers today!