Short Term Health Insurance
We have noticed that there is increasing public demand for short term health insurance plans. Short term plans are any plans that will cover you for between 1 and 12 months, and are for those of you who need temporary cover whilst spending a significant amount of time in another country. Due to this increased demand, we have used our established relationships with the world’s leading insurers to bring you the best possible customised short term plans.
Why Get A Short Term Health Insurance Plan?
You may be interested in a short term policy if you are going abroad for; work, studying, travelling (for an extended time, less than one year), or visiting family overseas. A short term policy is ideal for anyone that is spending long enough overseas to warrant more extensive cover than you can get through a travel insurance policy. For more information on the difference between short term and travel insurance plans, see our section below.
Benefit Options: These insurance plans, just like full-time plans, can cover as many or as few benefits as you want. Policies can be as extensive as a full standard health insurance plan, including evacuation cover if you are going to be spending time in a place with low quality healthcare, or that is considered dangerous. Conversely, if you want to ensure you have short term cover while you are overseas, but only want the bare bones of a health insurance plan (e.g. limited in-patient cover) we can arrange a plan that will cover this as well. These plans are highly customisable, and we are more than happy to talk you through your options so that you can get the best coverage at the best price for yourself and your family during your overseas stay.
Length of the Plan: You can also choose the length of time you want your plan for. This can range from 1 to 12 months, and normally includes the option to extend your plan at a later date if you need to. You may need to extend your plan if, for example, your work placement overseas gets extended for a few months. In addition to this, it is sometimes possible to transfer your plan into a long-term fully functioning annual plan that you can renew yearly and use as your primary international health insurance plan even at home.
The Difference Between Travel Insurance and Short Term Health Insurance
The two primary ways of receiving insurance coverage whilst you are travelling overseas are through a travel insurance policy and a short term policy. But what are the differences between these two plans, and which one is best suited to you? Here we will clear up the differences between the two.
Travel Insurance plans have a limited coverage extent. They typically exclude any coverage for pre-existing conditions, and will only cover for very limited elements of both in-patient and out-patient coverage. While the extent of coverage can differ between different travel insurance plans, it will definitely not be as extensive as a short term policy.
A Travel Insurance plan will typically try and relocate you back home for treatment if it is likely to go on for an extended period of time. This means that your coverage on this policy will stop and will be transferred to your home insurance plan.
Travel Insurance cannot be paid for through direct billing - where your insurer pays for treatment directly - so make sure you have sufficient money on hand to pay for treatment up front and then claim back the payments with your insurer later. Short term health plans can offer direct billing, making payments easy to deal with.
You also must purchase a travel insurance plan before you start your journey, and any attempt to buy a plan once your journey has begun will most likely be unsuccessful. However with a short term plan you can arrange to begin your plan whenever you wish.
Short Term Health Insurance:
- A plan that provides short term cover offers you much more extensive levels of coverage than a travel insurance plan. There are also much better levels of support available for you and your family while you are overseas.
Short term plans prevent you from having to return home if you need in-depth treatment for an illness or injury. In fact, you have much more choice with regards to where you get treatment, as you can choose to stay in the country you’re visiting, return home, or can even be covered for treatment in other countries as well if they have a better quality of healthcare (excluding America, unless you specifically purchase USA Coverage). This provides many families with comfort, as they can deal with their home surgeon or doctor and have that sense of familiarity. Selecting your area of coverage on your plan dictates where you can receive treatment.
Unlike travel insurance plans, these plans can be extended for up to a year, and even beyond. Often this is without any further underwriting taking place as well.
Temporary health insurance plans are also entirely customisable. You can tailor these plans to your needs just as you can tailor a full global insurance plan, allowing you to get coverage for what you want to and need to whilst you and your family are overseas. For example, if you are heading to a location where you are at high risk, or one with poor healthcare facilities, you may want to add evacuation cover to your plan.
What Happens When My Policy Finishes?
There are 3 options for you when your policy finishes:
1. You can simply conclude your policy and that’s it. If you have reached the end of your overseas stay and your policy has concluded, then you can go home and continue on with, or start a new health insurance plan. If you need to start a new plan in your home country, we can help you facilitate this too.
2. You can extend your policy if you know that you will be staying in your overseas location for a bit longer. You may need to do this if your work placement has been extended, and can therefore have your insurer continue your coverage for the remaining months you will be abroad.
3. Finally you can not only extend your policy, but may be offered the option to turn the short term health plan into your long term, annual cover. This means your plan will work in the same way as a normal health insurance policy, and you can then take this plan home with you and renew it annually. (If this is something you are interested in, talk to one of our advisors and we can tell you which insurers offer this option.)
Which Insurer Should I Choose?
There are now an abundance of insurers that will offer you a short term insurance plan, having realised the increased desire for such a product. We have collaborated with the world’s leading insurers to find the best plans covering you for from 1 to 12 months. These bespoke plans are available only to our clients, and are composed of the best benefits insurers have to offer at the best price. We offer highly customisable plans to ensure that you can be covered for whatever you require during your time abroad. When you contact us, tell us exactly what you want and need in a plan, and we will compile a list of options to go through with you. We can advise you on which of these plans we believe will best suit your requirements, and who are the more trusted insurers, and then complete all the important details with the insurer for you, leaving you to rest easy knowing you will be covered for any eventuality during your trip.
Premiums - How Much and How Are They Calculated?
Factors that are included in calculating your premium include:
The length of time for your plan. A 2 month health plan’s premiums will be different to a 12 month health plan, so ensure that you select the correct length of time for your plan with your insurer at the start. This can always be extended later on if you need to do so.
The extent of your coverage (the benefits you want). The more extensive your coverage, the higher your premiums will be. A bare bones in-patient only plan will be significantly less than a full in- and out-patient plan with evacuation cover which you may want if you are going to be spending a significant amount of time in a more dangerous country, or a country with lower quality healthcare.
The area of coverage. If you want coverage just for the country you are travelling in, your premium will be lower than if you want coverage in the neighbouring countries as well (so you can visit them for treatment). Furthermore, the place you will be spending your time in affects your premium, e.g. if you are going to be in South East Asia, the cost for treatment will be much lower than receiving the same treatment in the United States which has very expensive medical coverage. (For more info on USA Coverage click here).
For more information on Insurance Terms, see our dedicated page here.
We can tailor plans based on your desired budget, so if you want to maintain low premiums, we can arrange a policy that will cover you for just the basics. However if you want to spend more money and ensure you have more extensive coverage, we can help you to tailor a plan to suit these needs as well. Contact our advisors to talk through all your coverage options.