Three months ago an American cruiser in Bonaire
developed a significant cardiac problem beyond the abilities of the local hospital. The hospital in Curacao
would have been able to handle it be he would have faced a six figure bill.
Fortuntely he had DAN (Divers Alert Network) premium insurance
which includes repatriation for none dive related medical
problems. He had payed $150 for the years coverage.
As the only doctor in the anchorage I went to see him at 22:00, at 24:00 I was talking to a DAN doctor on call at Duke and he ordered a Lear Jet from Miami
, at 02:00 I briefed the nurse on the Lear Jet, at 09:00 the Jet landed in Bonaire
and at 17:00 my friend was in a cardiac unit in Miami
. His wife had flown on the Lear jet with him.
When the initial stabalization had been accomplished DAN payed for commercial
flights for them back to their home in California
where he underwent continued treatment.
The cost of the flight, paid by DAN, was $25,000+ the final medical
bill, paid by Medicare, was over $200,000.
is a great bargain expecially for someone with medical coverage in the US such as Medicare or Veterans coverage.
While I am sure commercial
repatriation insurance works the advantage of DAN is that you deal directly with the 24/7 on-call Diving Medical Officer
at Duke who does not have to ask a permission to order the jet and does not have a financial incentive to not order the Lear Jet. It is my understanding that the insurance is available to none divers.