Medical Evacuation Coverage –Do You Really Need It?
When you’re planning a trip, it’s common to spend a great deal of time thinking of what to bring along – the right clothes, the proper electric plugs, meds, etc. But, as accidents can occur in just a split second, the prudent traveler – business or pleasure – should also make sure they have a comprehensive insurance policy that includes medical evaluation.
The media reported in depth about Hollywood actress Ashley Judd’s grievous accident in February of 2021. Ms. Judd was walking in a Congo rainforest, fell, and shattered her leg. She had to undergo a terrible ordeal to get medical help, and eventually was airlifted to South Africa to begin her arduous treatment and rehabilitation.
Are International Health Insurance and Medical Evacuation Insurance the Same Thing?
International Health insurance generally includes medical evacuation insurance, but what you need to make sure of is: does it take you to the closest facility that can handle your emergency – or will it cover repatriation? What if you do not like the country where the assistance company wants to evacuate you to?
Medical evacuations can be very costly. Each year, 10 million travelers are hospitalized abroad – with over two million requiring medical transport. The average emergency medical evacuation costs can set you back $25,000 within North America and up to $100,000 from Europe, according to estimates by industry specialists. In more remote locations, a medical evacuation can cost as much as $250,000. In addition, should you need a nurse escort, those costs add about $11,000 within North America and $24,000 from Europe. Repatriation costs can be as high as $1 million, depending on the patient’s condition and location. That’s why it is essential for travelers to take out insurance for medical evacuations. You want to get immediate access to the best possible care.
Having the right coverage can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars. A VUMI® health insurance plan brings welcome peace of mind. You can be sure there is a 24/7 team to coordinate your care with medical staff at your destination. VUMI® offers transport by land or air ambulance plus additional benefits to fit every insured’s budget. We also have an additional benefit where you can decide where you want to be evacuated to within your region of cover.