Health care in Europe: why medical insurance is necessary in any case
Health insurance can make your stay in another country much easier. Insurance is not always required when crossing the border, so someone may neglect the need for its registration. But the lack of a health insurance policy for traveling abroad can have unpleasant consequences.
What is insurance and how does it work?
Medical insurance is a service that guarantees the insured person medical care and coverage of related expenses if necessary.
The essence of the insurance is that the person who buys the policy, in the event of an insured event (injury, illness, etc.), receives the right to medical assistance within the budget and list of services for which the insurance was issued. Actually, the budget and the list of services depend on the specific insurance company, the price of the policy, as well as the age and state of health of the person. As a rule, medical insurance guarantees inpatient (hospital treatment), outpatient (calling a doctor at home), emergency (emergency) care, and payment for medications. Insurance can cover the cost of treatment in whole or in part. If the insured gets sick, he/she needs to call the insurance company, which will direct the client to the right clinic.
If it so happened that the insured person was admitted to the hospital in an emergency, the insurance company must be notified as a matter of fact. If you had to pay some bills yourself, keep the receipts and documents confirming the treatment. They will also need to be provided to the insurance company.
Why insurance abroad?
The price of a standard insurance policy, for example, from the partners of Visit Ukraine is from 1 euro per day. The average market price is about 1.5 euros/day. But the medical services in case of need to consult a doctor are many times more expensive. In most countries of the world, medical care is provided to non-residents on a paid basis. For example, in Norway, an appointment with a family doctor for uninsured persons will cost from 20 euros, an appointment with a specialist doctor in the Czech Republic will cost from 30 euros. A day of inpatient stay in Germany is about 125 euros. And calling an ambulance in Switzerland in the absence of an insurance policy can cost 800 euros.
Therefore, even minor health problems in the absence of insurance can be pricey. In many countries, medicines are sold in pharmacies only by prescription, and in order to get them, you also need to consult a doctor.
What are the benefits of health insurance for Ukrainians in the current situation?
Many Ukrainians, who went abroad because of the war, obtained temporary protection in Europe and, accordingly, got access to free medicine. However, in reality, free medicine in Europe is different from Ukrainian, and the level of service is often lower than what Ukrainians are used to receiving at home.
Here is a short list of public health problems that the insurance policy helps to solve:
Queues. The first and most unpleasant surprise that awaits uninsured patients in Europe. If you are uninsured and decide to use public medicine in a European hospital, be prepared that it may take several weeks or even months to see a doctor. For the majority of Ukrainians abroad - mothers with children - it is simply impossible to wait for their appointment in a state hospital.
Remote consultations. In Europe, as well as in Ukraine, state medicine provides face-to-face consultations. If you need an emergency or a small consultation, and there is no time to wait in lines - you will have to pay for a remote doctor's appointment. Above, we already wrote about the average price tag for an appointment with a European doctor. For the price of one appointment in Europe, you can purchase an entire insurance policy for a month from the partners of Visit Ukraine, which will cover remote consultations by a Ukrainian doctor, among other things. The ease of communication in your native language and the recognized qualifications of our doctors are an undeniable advantage of policies from Ukrainian insurers.
Scope of coverage. Comprehensive insurance policies, including insurance policies of Visit Ukraine partners, cover insurance incidents both on the territory of foreign countries and in Ukraine itself. Ukrainians often go home and return to Europe or stay here altogether. An insurance policy will protect your health wherever you are.
Issuing an insurance policy takes minutes and guarantees medical services that we are used to easily getting at home. To protect yourself from troubles abroad and to be calm for yourself and your loved ones, it is advisable to purchase a health insurance in advance. The fact that in Europe and other countries, almost all citizens have insurance policies, shows that insurance is no longer a luxury, but an affordable necessity for everyone.
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