When you go on holiday, it's imperative that you have traveller's insurance, whether you have a pre-existing condition or not. While most travel insurance policies will include repatriation and emergency medical expenses, this doesn't extend to any existing medical conditions unless you have disclosed them to your medical provider and obtained coverage. Healthcare in different countries, and going home due to a medical condition, can be very costly. This could run well into the thousands of dollars if you were to become ill while you were on holiday due to a previously diagnosed condition. The last thing anyone wants is to find out that they're not covered and are left to pay the extremely expensive bill.
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Having travel insurance for a pre-existing condition is the best way to guarantee that you're protected in the event you have to cancel your holiday or you need emergency medical attention while you're in a foreign country. Most individuals that have a pre-existing medical condition are older in age, so compare travel insurance deals for over 50s to make sure you're getting the best deal when it comes to a pre-existing condition.
What is a pre-existing condition when it comes to travellers insurance?
Pre-existing conditions are anything that you know you had before you took out a policy. When you apply for traveller's insurance and you know you have a medical condition, you need to complete a process that's known as a medical screening. This is a simple process where you answer questions about your current health. Insurance providers want to know about any conditions where you take any prescribed medication and any circulatory, heart, respiratory, cancerous, or stroke conditions that have ever been diagnosed in your lifetime. It doesn't matter if these conditions have been cured or no longer affect you, or if you believe they will not cause a problem while you're on holiday. Failing to tell an insurer about them will make your policy null and void.
What are the costs of travel insurance for someone who has a pre-existing condition?
Your base rate for the standard holiday insurance is going to be based on your destination, age, and the length of your stay. The cost of an additional premium that covers your pre-existing medical conditions is going to be figured out by the answers you give during the screening process. It's not going to be about the amount of medical conditions you already have, but a combination of your current health status and how expensive the healthcare will be in the country you're visiting.
For example, travelling to the United States might seem like it would be cheaper than say, Australia, but that's not the case. Traveller's insurance for trips to the United States is more expensive because there's a higher risk of fraud in the United States, as well as being transported back to the United Kingdom is much more costly. Australia has a reciprocal agreement with the United Kingdom that makes it easier and cheaper to insure travellers who decide to holiday there.
Be sure you look up your destination to make sure it's not too difficult to get traveller's insurance for that region.
What is the medical screening process?
Medical screening is just a multiple choice, quiz-like document that determines the seriousness of any pre-existing conditions when you go to purchase travel insurance. Some of them might be a little personal to you, but the answers you give are always confidential. Remember to answer all questions with honesty and accuracy because you could be penalised if you do not. Some insurers require a medical screening over the phone, but some will allow you to fill out a form online just once.
What types of questions are going to be asked?
Most providers are going to give you a document that lists all the pre-existing conditions you have to disclose, that way you're not confused about the process. Depending on the condition you've had or currently have, you might be asked about the different medicines you take and whether you've been hospitalised for the condition. The name of the medication you're taking will not be asked, but be sure you know exactly why you take it by consulting with your physician.
Is it possible to declare some conditions while choosing to keep others off the insurance?
No, you may not purchase standard medical insurance with a premium for just one pre-existing condition when you have three. You must declare all of them on your insurance or choose to purchase the standard traveller's insurance and leave your pre-existing conditions out of it entirely. This means that if something were to happen while you were on vacation and it pertained to your pre-existing condition; none of the fees would be covered.
How is a pre-existing condition going to affect my traveller's insurance cost?
Most medical conditions that are pre-existing are not going to affect your cost, but it's still important you declare them. The severity of the condition is going to affect the level of any additional premium that's necessary. The insurer will base the additional cost on the risk that you might need medical attention while you are away, or you need to cancel your vacation because you've become too ill to travel. If your condition is severe or it's not stable, you'll have to pay more for traveller's insurance.
Why should I bother if it's going to raise my rate?
The simple answer to that question is that the premium is going to be a lot less than any charges you'll accrue if you end up having to go to a doctor due to a pre-existing condition in a foreign country. What's worse is if you need to be transported back to your home country and you get left with the bill.
If you have a pre-existing condition, it's always best to declare it on your traveller's insurance and pay the premium, if there is one. Travelling can be a stressful event, even if it's just exciting, and you don't want to have that overload on your system cause an emergency situation you can't pay for later. Traveller's insurance is the safe way to travel.