International medical insurance for expats is a complex topic. There are indeed several possibilities for people living abroad.
Here are some tips on how to choose the best international health insurance for expats.
Is Social Security a Good Health Insurance for Expats Living Abroad?
Social Security is available in many countries. It offers medical coverage to its citizens if they fulfill certain conditions. In some territories, it even covers people who move abroad.
An Insurance Policy Open to All Citizens
In most countries, Social Security is a public entity. It’s regulated and managed by the Government. Consequently, its health insurance is open to all citizens. Regardless of their background or medical situation.
It cannot refuse membership to anyone or apply a surcharge to the premium, unlike fully private insurance companies might do.
Minimum Health Coverage Abroad
In addition, Social Security reimbursements are on the same basis as those of the expat’s home country. In many territories, the cost of care is much higher. And the insured needs to pay the difference.
Due to this, Social Security is not enough as health insurance for expats living abroad.
Supplementary Insurance Is Needed to Get Better Reimbursements
This is why some insurance companies offer supplementary plans to Social Security coverage. These allow you to benefit from better reimbursements.
They can sometimes also include additional guarantees, such as repatriation.
The Best International Health Insurance for Expats
The other possibility is to turn to a private company specialized in health insurance for people living abroad.
Reimbursement From the First Euro Spent
These insurances are often called “first euro” (or “first dollar”) because they cover health expenses from the first euro spent by the insured. This is not the case with Social Security supplementary insurance.
One of the advantages of this type of insurance is that you only have to deal with one entity for your health coverage. This facilitates administrative procedures.
International Medical Insurance for Expats With Access to Local Health Networks
In addition, companies that offer this type of international medical insurance for expats generally rely on local private health networks.
This allows the insured to benefit from advantageous rates. And, above all, to be exempted from the advance payment of expenses when they are substantial. For example, in the case of hospitalization.
Guarantees Adapted to Expatriates
The “first euro” insurance plans are specially designed for expatriates. They include repatriation in case of serious illness or major surgery.
They also cover health expenses incurred during stays in your home country. Or even in any other territory in the world.
Finally, these insurances have English-speaking teams to respond to your requests. And this makes all the procedures easier.