Health insurance should be high up the list of financial priorities for expats living in Asia. You and your family are unlikely to be eligible for free treatment in the country in which you are resident and will find the cost of medical treatment very high if you don’t have a comprehensive medical insurance policy.
It’s a mistake to think that you don’t need cover because you and your family are fit and well. However healthy your lifestyle, life is unpredictable and your medical requirements can change overnight. Medical insurance gives you the peace of mind that when you need treatment the insurer will pick up the tab for any treatment covered under your policy.
There are many different providers and policies which can make it confusing to work out which one best meets the needs of you and your family. To help you choose, here are some common mistakes to avoid:
1. Choosing a policy based on price
Health is not something that you want to cut corners on. The least expensive policy may not cover you for everything you need. We would always advise going for as comprehensive a policy as you can afford to ensure that whatever happens, you can quickly access the very best care and treatment available without worrying about the cost.
2. Selecting a local policy for a cheaper premium
While it’s generally true that local policies tend to be less expensive than international ones, the itinerant lifestyle of many expats means that they aren’t always the best choice. Portability is usually key. In addition, international policies tend to offer access to a more extensive choice of hospitals, offering you the highest quality of care available with higher treatment ceilings to boot. A major disadvantage of a local policy is the danger of being excluded from treatment if and when you wish to return home. For maximum flexibility, opt for an international policy.
3. Not insisting on a direct billing policy
Direct billing means that the treatment provider will send the invoice for your treatment directly to your insurance company so you don’t have to fork out hefty fees. It eliminates the risk of being denied treatment in a medical emergency because you can’t pay upfront. For problem-free treatment, insist on a policy which offers direct billing.
4. Omitting maternity cover
Maternity cover is important for anyone who may become pregnant within the next two years. Most insurers operate a 12 month waiting limit before a maternity benefit claim can be made which means planning ahead for pregnancy is vital. Maternity costs can be astronomical so if children are on the cards, it’s a mistake not to include maternity cover in your medical insurance policy.
5. Not telling the truth on your health insurance application
Never be tempted to leave out any details of your medical history to obtain a lower price on health insurance. Hiding the truth can invalidate your policy and can be classed as fraud. It’s always best to be 100% honest on your health insurance application and pay the premium related to the risk you pose.
If you or your family are at risk due to a lack of adequate medical insurance, Infinity can help. With access to the best international insurers, our professional advisers are tied to none so can advise on the most appropriate plan at the most competitive price according to your needs. When it comes to premiums, our prices are the same as going direct to the insurer but we can offer you a greater choice.
Contact us today to discuss your medical insurance requirements and obtain quotes to protect your family.
A leading provider of expat financial services and wealth management services across Asia.