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Emergency Medical Evacuation Coverage in Travel Insurance

Emergency medical evacuation coverage in travel insurance

Most travel insurance plans provide emergency medical evacuation coverage, and many travelers just don't realize how important it is.

Emergency medical evacuation is often abbreviated as "medevac" or "medivac." Emergency medical evacuation is the transportation from one hospital to another in the case of serious illness or an injury that requires urgent treatment. It occurs only when the local hospital can't provide adequate treatment. In other words, emergency medical evacuation is merely transportation — there is no medical coverage.

The Need

People travel internationally to many different parts of the world. In many places, medical facilities are not capable of providing proper treatment. The medical facilities may not have the technology or expertise to treat the patient properly. Maybe the quality of care is substandard. Therefore, emergency medical evacuation is critical.

Emergency medical evacuation may cost anywhere from $20,000 to $250,000 and most people simply cannot come up with such a large sum of money. Even if someone has the money, he or she will simply be unable to make the complex arrangements necessary to execute a medical evacuation.

In the United States

Many people that visit the United States wonder whether emergency medical evacuation coverage is necessary. They mistakenly think that anywhere in the U.S., they can just call 911 and get treated at a nearby hospital. Even though that is true in many parts of the country, it is not the case everywhere. What if you are injured in a road accident on a highway in a remote place? What if there is a traffic jam on that highway, and you cannot be quickly transported? What about when you are touring the mountains? What about on the way to Niagara Falls? What happens if you take a cruise to the Caribbean, and you have a heart attack onboard?

Therefore, emergency medical evacuation is a necessity even when visiting the United States. Fortunately, emergency medical evacuation is already included in most visitors' insurance plans.

Of course, emergency medical evacuation only transports the person to the nearest place where adequate care can be given and not to the home country, as per the insured's wishes. In other words, emergency medical evacuation to a particular location must be medically necessary.

Arrangements

Emergency medical evacuation typically occurs in an air ambulance, which is a private aircraft or helicopter. It is usually equipped with a nurse, a physician and EMTs, as well as oxygen, medications and other appropriate emergency treatment materials. The patient is strapped to a stretcher. As the air ambulance is not large, typically there is room only for one companion and minimum carry-on luggage.

However, depending on the location and the circumstance, evacuation may even occur by ground ambulance, jeep or even yak.

In addition to transportation via air ambulance, the emergency-assistance department of the insurance company also makes arrangements for:

  • Ground transportation coordination on both ends of the evacuation
  • Identifying an appropriate air-transportation company and medical escort, as appropriate
  • Immigration and flight clearances
  • Coordination to get the patient admitted into an appropriate medical facility
  • Travel arrangement assistance

Once the patient is stable enough to travel a long distance, emergency medical evacuation benefits also include repatriation back to his or her home country, usually in a commercial airline.

Requirements

To avail emergency medical evacuation coverage in travel insurance, all arrangements must be coordinated directly through the insurance company. The insurance company must make all the arrangements and make direct payments. You cannot make your arrangements and expect the insurance company to reimburse you later.

It is important to keep in mind that emergency medical evacuation does not include the initial rescue from the point of injury.

Some travelers simply don't want to get treated in a foreign country and demand that they be returned home to even start the treatment. That is not feasible financially or medically. Emergency medical evacuation usually occurs if recommended by the attending physician.

Conclusion

Emergency medical evacuation coverage is an important part of travel insurance.

Additionally, stand-alone medical evacuation and repatriation insurance plans are available as well. Such plans are especially useful in meeting the J visa insurance requirements set by the U.S. State Department.

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To continue with the application please scroll down to confirm this notice

CALIFORNIA RESIDENTS SPECIAL NOTICE

1. THE INSURANCE POLICY THAT YOU ARE APPLYING TO PURCHASE IS BEING ISSUED BY AN INSURER THAT IS NOT LICENSED BY THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA. THESE COMPANIES ARE CALLED "NONADMITTED" OR "SURPLUS LINE" INSURERS.

2. THE INSURER IS NOT SUBJECT TO THE FINANCIAL SOLVENCY REGULATION AND ENFORCEMENT THAT APPLY TO CALIFORNIA LICENSED INSURERS.

3. THE INSURER DOES NOT PARTICIPATE IN ANY OF THE INSURANCE GUARANTEE FUNDS CREATED BY CALIFORNIA LAW. THEREFORE, THESE FUNDS WILL NOT PAY YOUR CLAIMS OR PROTECT YOUR ASSETS IF THE INSURER BECOMES INSOLVENT AND IS UNABLE TO MAKE PAYMENTS AS PROMISED.

4. THE INSURER SHOULD BE LICENSED EITHER AS A FOREIGN INSURER IN ANOTHER STATE IN THE UNITED STATES OR AS A NON-UNITED STATES (ALIEN) INSURER. YOU SHOULD ASK QUESTIONS OF YOUR INSURANCE AGENT, BROKER, OR “SURPLUS LINE” BROKER OR CONTACT THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE AT THE FOLLOWING TOLL-FREE TELEPHONE NUMBER 1-800-927-4357. ASK WHETHER OR NOT THE INSURER IS LICENSED AS A FOREIGN OR NON-UNITED STATES (ALIEN) INSURER AND FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE INSURER. YOU MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NAIC’S INTERNET WEB SITE AT WWW.NAIC.ORG.

5. FOREIGN INSURERS SHOULD BE LICENSED BY A STATE IN THE UNITED STATES AND YOU MAY CONTACT THAT STATE’S DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE TO OBTAIN MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THAT INSURER.

6. FOR NON-UNITED STATES (ALIEN) INSURERS, THE INSURER SHOULD BE LICENSED BY A COUNTRY OUTSIDE OF THE UNITED STATES AND SHOULD BE ON THE NAIC’S INTERNATIONAL INSURERS DEPARTMENT (IID) LISTING OF APPROVED NONADMITTED NON-UNITED STATES INSURERS. ASK YOUR AGENT, BROKER, OR “SURPLUS LINE” BROKER TO OBTAIN MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THAT INSURER.

7. CALIFORNIA MAINTAINS A LIST OF APPROVED SURPLUS LINE INSURERS. ASK YOUR AGENT OR BROKER IF THE INSURER IS ON THAT LIST, OR VIEW THAT LIST AT THE INTERNET WEB SITE OF THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE: www.insurance.ca.gov.

8. IF YOU, AS THE APPLICANT, REQUIRED THAT THE INSURANCE POLICY YOU HAVE PURCHASED BE BOUND IMMEDIATELY, EITHER BECAUSE EXISTING COVERAGE WAS GOING TO LAPSE WITHIN TWO BUSINESS DAYS OR BECAUSE YOU WERE REQUIRED TO HAVE COVERAGE WITHIN TWO BUSINESS DAYS, AND YOU DID NOT RECEIVE THIS DISCLOSURE FORM AND A REQUEST FOR YOUR SIGNATURE UNTIL AFTER COVERAGE BECAME EFFECTIVE, YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO CANCEL THIS POLICY WITHIN FIVE DAYS OF RECEIVING THIS DISCLOSURE. IF YOU CANCEL COVERAGE, THE PREMIUM WILL BE PRORATED AND ANY BROKER’S FEE CHARGED FOR THIS INSURANCE WILL BE RETURNED TO YOU.

07/11
LSW1146D

Cuba Notice

Travel to Cuba remains subject to restrictions imposed by U.S. sanctions, administered by the US Treasury. Only those who qualify for travel authorized under US Treasury's regulations and who comply with the terms of such authorization can legally travel to Cuba. Individuals traveling to Cuba must meet the following criteria in order to qualify for travel authorized under one of the general licenses outlined below:

Criteria for travel authorized by the US Treasury

If you have read and agree to the terms of both Notices: California and Cuba, please click the continue button if you wish to complete the application process. Otherwise, please click cancel to abort the application process.

To continue with the application please scroll down to confirm this notice

CALIFORNIA RESIDENTS SPECIAL NOTICE

1. THE INSURANCE POLICY THAT YOU ARE APPLYING TO PURCHASE IS BEING ISSUED BY AN INSURER THAT IS NOT LICENSED BY THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA. THESE COMPANIES ARE CALLED "NONADMITTED" OR "SURPLUS LINE" INSURERS.

2. THE INSURER IS NOT SUBJECT TO THE FINANCIAL SOLVENCY REGULATION AND ENFORCEMENT THAT APPLY TO CALIFORNIA LICENSED INSURERS.

3. THE INSURER DOES NOT PARTICIPATE IN ANY OF THE INSURANCE GUARANTEE FUNDS CREATED BY CALIFORNIA LAW. THEREFORE, THESE FUNDS WILL NOT PAY YOUR CLAIMS OR PROTECT YOUR ASSETS IF THE INSURER BECOMES INSOLVENT AND IS UNABLE TO MAKE PAYMENTS AS PROMISED.

4. THE INSURER SHOULD BE LICENSED EITHER AS A FOREIGN INSURER IN ANOTHER STATE IN THE UNITED STATES OR AS A NON-UNITED STATES (ALIEN) INSURER. YOU SHOULD ASK QUESTIONS OF YOUR INSURANCE AGENT, BROKER, OR “SURPLUS LINE” BROKER OR CONTACT THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE AT THE FOLLOWING TOLL-FREE TELEPHONE NUMBER 1-800-927-4357. ASK WHETHER OR NOT THE INSURER IS LICENSED AS A FOREIGN OR NON-UNITED STATES (ALIEN) INSURER AND FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE INSURER. YOU MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NAIC’S INTERNET WEB SITE AT WWW.NAIC.ORG.

5. FOREIGN INSURERS SHOULD BE LICENSED BY A STATE IN THE UNITED STATES AND YOU MAY CONTACT THAT STATE’S DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE TO OBTAIN MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THAT INSURER.

6. FOR NON-UNITED STATES (ALIEN) INSURERS, THE INSURER SHOULD BE LICENSED BY A COUNTRY OUTSIDE OF THE UNITED STATES AND SHOULD BE ON THE NAIC’S INTERNATIONAL INSURERS DEPARTMENT (IID) LISTING OF APPROVED NONADMITTED NON-UNITED STATES INSURERS. ASK YOUR AGENT, BROKER, OR “SURPLUS LINE” BROKER TO OBTAIN MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THAT INSURER.

7. CALIFORNIA MAINTAINS A LIST OF APPROVED SURPLUS LINE INSURERS. ASK YOUR AGENT OR BROKER IF THE INSURER IS ON THAT LIST, OR VIEW THAT LIST AT THE INTERNET WEB SITE OF THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE: www.insurance.ca.gov.

8. IF YOU, AS THE APPLICANT, REQUIRED THAT THE INSURANCE POLICY YOU HAVE PURCHASED BE BOUND IMMEDIATELY, EITHER BECAUSE EXISTING COVERAGE WAS GOING TO LAPSE WITHIN TWO BUSINESS DAYS OR BECAUSE YOU WERE REQUIRED TO HAVE COVERAGE WITHIN TWO BUSINESS DAYS, AND YOU DID NOT RECEIVE THIS DISCLOSURE FORM AND A REQUEST FOR YOUR SIGNATURE UNTIL AFTER COVERAGE BECAME EFFECTIVE, YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO CANCEL THIS POLICY WITHIN FIVE DAYS OF RECEIVING THIS DISCLOSURE. IF YOU CANCEL COVERAGE, THE PREMIUM WILL BE PRORATED AND ANY BROKER’S FEE CHARGED FOR THIS INSURANCE WILL BE RETURNED TO YOU.

07/11
LSW1146D

If you have read and agreed to the terms of this notice and wish to continue, please click the continue button. Otherwise, please click cancel to abort the application process.

Cuba Notice

Travel to Cuba remains subject to restrictions imposed by U.S. sanctions, administered by the US Treasury. Only those who qualify for travel authorized under US Treasury's regulations and who comply with the terms of such authorization can legally travel to Cuba. Individuals traveling to Cuba must meet the following criteria in order to qualify for travel authorized under one of the general licenses outlined below:

Criteria for travel authorized by the US Treasury

I certify that I have read the above and that all individuals applying for coverage qualify for travel authorized under one of the general licenses per US Treasury regulations.

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