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leftbrainstuff 27-12-2016 10:48

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sck5 (Post 2287887)
THere is a reasonable path for US citizens who are travelling abroad. While it doesnt necessarily work for those with chronic conditions like diabetes it works well for everything else. It has three parts

1. Ordinary medical care (routine infections, broken bones, cuts, etc.) is FAR cheaper outside of the US. Dont buy insurance to cover this. Simply go to the local clinic and buy your medical care a la carte. It will be cheap and perfectly good. I have tried this everywhere I have gone, from Africa to the Caribbean to Europe. There are competent doctores in all of these places. Buying insurance to cover this stuff is WAY more expensive. Not only that but the rest of the world won't have a clue what to do with your insurance card so you will end up paying out of pocket anyway.

2. Buy medical evacuation insurance for those problems which require a US hospital or an extended stay in the hospital. I have Medjet right now but have used SOS in the past. Note: Medjet is ONLY for the transportation back to your home in the US. Nothing else. But it isnt that expensive

3. Buy a high deductible catastrophic policy back in the US for those major issues (e.g. a policy with a 5k deductible but no upper limit) Yes, you might someday be out 5k if a major illness or accident strikes but that will be it. Your transportation back home and unlimited care once you get there is already taken care of.

I have done this for years. Never had to use the medjet but I have known people who did and they were happy with it. A la carte care is perfectly OK for all the routine stuff that pops up. In fact, local doctors are much more in touch with local diseases, infections, etc. than are US doctors. We are money ahead as a result

+1

Local medical care is often far better than in the US or Australia. First world medical care is a monopolistic for profit business. Patient care is secondaty to maximizing profit.

I've had dentsl work from a cuban far better than from Australia. My wife has been diagnosed by an embassy doctor with second world experience.

Med evac and global ins, ex US, is quite cheap.

Safari38LH 27-12-2016 10:53

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Now, if our elected officials had to have what we have.........well..........things would be a bit different, no?

Amen!!!!

Hoosiersailor 27-12-2016 11:36

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
For medi-vac insurance, has anyone worked with https://danboater.org/? I have never heard anything negative on their dive insurance and I have had it in the past, however I never had the opportunity to use it (thank goodness).

Annual Memberships: $60 Individuals, $100 Family
  • 24/7 Emergency Medical Hotline
  • $150,000 Worldwide Medical Evacuation
  • Search & Rescue Expense Coverage
  • Medical Repatriation (to Home Country)
  • Travel Medical Guides
  • Travel Assistance Services

Cthoops 27-12-2016 11:53

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
We're planning to leave in 3 years, 4 months, and 4 days. We're handling the health insurance issue by sailing away from the U.S. and not returning, except possibly for short visits with family in which case we'll buy travel insurance with a medical provision just in case we get unlucky and something happens while we're temporarily here. Until we both qualify for medicare, we simply won't be able to afford to carry medical insurance on our own while living in the U.S. (I have no illusions that any form of Obamacare will be available when we leave), so we're out of here.

I never would have thought of it as an option several years ago. I've grown up in the U.S. where it's ingrained into you that "There's no better health care than here!", but exposure to people through forums such as this (and doing some traveling) opened my eyes. Health care in the U.S. is not the end all and be all. Far from it.

Is there the chance that I'll come down with some malady that can only be resolved in the U.S.? Perhaps, but it's unlikely. It's a risk we're knowingly taking, and we're comfortable with our decision. Not everyone would be, and that's o.k. too.

s/v Moondancer 27-12-2016 11:53

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Hoosier,

As a cruising doctor I have organized 2 medical evacuations from the Caribbean to the US through DAN dive insurance but for non-dive injuries. The service was excellent and in one instance they had a Lear jet in Bonaire within 10 hours of the initial call which was at midnight. The flight nurse was on the phone to me organizing the flight by 02:00 and would have had a flight doctor on the plane had I deemed it necessary.

My wife has been negotiating with a boat agent in Tahiti who says that the local authorities will accept DAN repatriation insurance for the medical element of the immigration requirements.

I have no experience with the 'boater insurance.'

s/v Moondancer 27-12-2016 12:13

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
I have visited over 30 countries in the last 10 years and 40,000+ miles of cruising and less than one third had medical services remotely equivalent to the US.

Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK and the French Islands have first world medicine but the rest of the places we visited would not serve for colon cancer, a serious heart problem, or in a friends case, a broken back.

Panama City, Panama, has first world medicine but at US prices...cash only! I helped evacuate a penniless Canadian cruiser from Mexico back to Canada who had a seriously infected spider bite that was being badly mistreated by the locals putting his leg or life in danger.

Get repatriation insurance!

Hoosiersailor 27-12-2016 12:15

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by s/v Moondancer (Post 2288632)
Hoosier,

As a cruising doctor I have organized 2 medical evacuations from the Caribbean to the US through DAN dive insurance but for non-dive injuries. The service was excellent and in one instance they had a Lear jet in Bonaire within 10 hours of the initial call which was at midnight. The flight nurse was on the phone to me organizing the flight by 02:00 and would have had a flight doctor on the plane had I deemed it necessary.

My wife has been negotiating with a boat agent in Tahiti who says that the local authorities will accept DAN repatriation insurance for the medical element of the immigration requirements.

I have no experience with the 'boater insurance.'

Thanks Phil. Your experience with DAN is similar to everything else I have heard.

sck5 27-12-2016 14:45

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
The VA is NOT what would result from giving everyone a Medicare card. Medicare is socialized INSURANCE. The VA is socialized DOCTORS and HOSPITALS. That is a big difference. I like my doctors. I hate my insurance company. I am not alone in that opinion.

And most retirees I know like Medicare. Some, like my parents, have add-on policies to get coverage beyond what Medicare gives. There is nothing wrong with that. But for the basic coverage, Medicare does it way cheaper because they don't have to pay shareholders a profit margin.

It is a typical scare tactic to say that universal health insurance will result in all of us going to the equivalent of the VA. Nobody ever proposed that because it is obvious to everyone what a bad idea that would be.

smj 27-12-2016 15:35

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sck5 (Post 2288740)
The VA is NOT what would result from giving everyone a Medicare card. Medicare is socialized INSURANCE. The VA is socialized DOCTORS and HOSPITALS. That is a big difference. I like my doctors. I hate my insurance company. I am not alone in that opinion.



And most retirees I know like Medicare. Some, like my parents, have add-on policies to get coverage beyond what Medicare gives. There is nothing wrong with that. But for the basic coverage, Medicare does it way cheaper because they don't have to pay shareholders a profit margin.



It is a typical scare tactic to say that universal health insurance will result in all of us going to the equivalent of the VA. Nobody ever proposed that because it is obvious to everyone what a bad idea that would be.


I like the VA system. Not sure if a total government run health care system would work as well in the US as it does in other countries.


Sent from my iPhone using Cruisers Sailing Forum

Therapy 27-12-2016 15:36

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by s/v Moondancer (Post 2288647)
I have visited over 30 countries in the last 10 years and 40,000+ miles of cruising and less than one third had medical services remotely equivalent to the US.

Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK and the French Islands have first world medicine but the rest of the places we visited would not serve for colon cancer, a serious heart problem, or in a friends case, a broken back.

Panama City, Panama, has first world medicine but at US prices...cash only! I helped evacuate a penniless Canadian cruiser from Mexico back to Canada who had a seriously infected spider bite that was being badly mistreated by the locals putting his leg or life in danger.

Get repatriation insurance!

This is what I have noted having been on this site for multiple years.
My own experience in Antigua was that I was sick and needed antibiotics. I was put off three times in 12 days, being told "it is going around, It is probably a virus. etc, etc." I have continuing problems related to delayed treatment. I have a hard spot on my heart from that and two other similar experiences. My wife and my friends wife got Chickungunya too. Bad luck or ill-preparedness depending on who is arguing that episode.
I hesitate to hold up the US is #1 medical flag because it is always shot down by someone here with a story.
But there might be a reason why so many of the worlds doctors are trained in the US. The one I finally saw in Antigua, the one I saw in Martinique and the one I saw in Dominique (my three issues).....yep American trained.

Complicating things further is that I am a Registered Nurse with 30+ years experience. :wink:

Gadagirl 27-12-2016 16:16

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sck5 (Post 2287887)
THere is a reasonable path for US citizens who are travelling abroad. While it doesnt necessarily work for those with chronic conditions like diabetes it works well for everything else. It has three parts

1. Ordinary medical care (routine infections, broken bones, cuts, etc.) is FAR cheaper outside of the US. Dont buy insurance to cover this. Simply go to the local clinic and buy your medical care a la carte. It will be cheap and perfectly good. I have tried this everywhere I have gone, from Africa to the Caribbean to Europe. There are competent doctores in all of these places. Buying insurance to cover this stuff is WAY more expensive. Not only that but the rest of the world won't have a clue what to do with your insurance card so you will end up paying out of pocket anyway.

2. Buy medical evacuation insurance for those problems which require a US hospital or an extended stay in the hospital. I have Medjet right now but have used SOS in the past. Note: Medjet is ONLY for the transportation back to your home in the US. Nothing else. But it isnt that expensive

3. Buy a high deductible catastrophic policy back in the US for those major issues (e.g. a policy with a 5k deductible but no upper limit) Yes, you might someday be out 5k if a major illness or accident strikes but that will be it. Your transportation back home and unlimited care once you get there is already taken care of.

I have done this for years. Never had to use the medjet but I have known people who did and they were happy with it. A la carte care is perfectly OK for all the routine stuff that pops up. In fact, local doctors are much more in touch with local diseases, infections, etc. than are US doctors. We are money ahead as a result

This is what I'm planning on doing as well. But I was also knocking around the idea of establishing residency in a more affordable country, buying health insurance coverage there, and for major catastrophe/treatment being evacuated to that country. Bypassing the US healthcare system all together. Has anyone (US citizen) out there done anything similar?

Paul L 27-12-2016 16:22

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by s/v Moondancer (Post 2288647)
I have visited over 30 countries in the last 10 years and 40,000+ miles of cruising and less than one third had medical services remotely equivalent to the US.

Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK and the French Islands have first world medicine but the rest of the places we visited would not serve for colon cancer, a serious heart problem, or in a friends case, a broken back.

Panama City, Panama, has first world medicine but at US prices...cash only! I helped evacuate a penniless Canadian cruiser from Mexico back to Canada who had a seriously infected spider bite that was being badly mistreated by the locals putting his leg or life in danger.

Get repatriation insurance!

If you are talking repatriation back to the US, then you still need to be paying for US health insurance.

belizesailor 27-12-2016 18:25

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by s/v Moondancer (Post 2288647)
I have visited over 30 countries in the last 10 years and 40,000+ miles of cruising and less than one third had medical services remotely equivalent to the US.

Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK and the French Islands have first world medicine but the rest of the places we visited would not serve for colon cancer, a serious heart problem, or in a friends case, a broken back.

Panama City, Panama, has first world medicine but at US prices...cash only! I helped evacuate a penniless Canadian cruiser from Mexico back to Canada who had a seriously infected spider bite that was being badly mistreated by the locals putting his leg or life in danger.

Get repatriation insurance!

Currently live in Panama...healthcare is good and more expensive than many other Central American countries, but still way cheaper than USA.

masonc 27-12-2016 19:42

Re: Health Insurance ?
 
We use BUPA, covers everywhere except continental USA.


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