January 21, 2010

Becoming an Expatriate: Health Care in Other Countries


For some, traveling to other countries for medical care is their sole purpose in visiting the country, and medical tourism is becoming more and more popular here in the United States.  That's a different issue for a different day (other than what I've already written about it, if you're interested in that subject).

Medical Care for Expatriates - Not Medical Tourism

When you're pondering living for an extended time in another country - e.g., a retired snowbird following the sun, a young adventurer wanting to see the world, a family following a corporate job - one of the big issues will be the kind of health care that you'll get, how much it will cost, and how best to plan ahead to insure that you're covered from the minute that you hit your new shores.  Each country is different, and different expatriates may qualify for different levels of care in their new homeland. 

Here are some good resources to start your studies on expatriate medical care:

  1. TransitionsAbroad.com has tons of information about this topic in a series of articles covering Health, Safety, and Insurance for Expatriates.
  2. For those who like lists, ShelterOvershore offers a short, smart overview in  Expatriate Healthcare Checklist with five articles providing more details on the topic (like whether or not you need insurance coverage before you go overseas) in the site's right sidebar. 
  3. A huge list of insurers provided international medical coverage has been collected at expatriates.com.
  4. An expatriate in Spain gives first hand information about medical care in Spain with lots of details in a great blog, SpainExpat.
  5. A great discussion of a British expat's life in Greece can be found at Living in Greece.  Pauline describes the ease with which she gets her high blood pressure medication and how efficiently her husband's athlete's foot was treated.

2 comments:

kareljones said...

The life of an expatriate is both exciting and depressing. Year by year, thousand of people decide to move permanently abroad and to make a new life for themselves and their families in a foreign land.
While its true that the grass is always greener on the other side, many individuals have encountered problems abroad, then regretting not having ample support from their place of origin.
One of the things one need to check out very carefully is the expat health insurance.
Examine the provision of healthcare.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting article. I moved to Spain a month ago and found it all very hard to get my head round the Spanish system. I am retired and therefore I do not pay any social secuirty. From what I have been told I will have to pay towards my health cover in Spain in the future,something to do with new regulations. I have therefore decided not to take any risks and took out a Private medical insurance policy. The broker who provided me with the policy was bloomfield insurance who were very efficient and helpful. There website is www.bloomfieldsure.es