At HealthCare International we try to keep things as simple as possible, but invariably there will be a few questions about the cover provided under HealthCare International's range of global medical plans.
Should you wish to raise any issues or discuss any part of your application, that we haven't covered here or on other documentation, please do not hesitate in contacting our help team, either by:
|Telephone||+44 (0)20 7590 8800|
|Fax||+44 (0)20 7590 8815|
The following questions are those that we find are most commonly asked with regard to Medical Cover and which you might find useful.
If you are looking for answers on our other products please try the following locations:
|HealthCare International Medical Plans|
1. Who is eligible to apply for cover?
Almost anyone can purchase a HealthCare International medical policy. Our plans are tailored for expatriates, which is anyone who
is away from their Home Country for at least six months of the policy year.
Our plans are annually renewable for whole of life; the only proviso being that you must be aged under 75 when first applying. You have to be at least 18 years of age to be the Policyholder.
2. When can my cover begin?
You can apply for cover up to 30 days before you would like your policy to start (the inception date).
Once received, we will process your application based on the information you have provided to us. If you have answered 'no' to all the medical questions, it can be processed immediately. If you have declared a medical history, your application will be assessed by our underwriting team, which usually takes up to five working days.
Once a policy has been issued and your first premium collected, you are covered as per the benefits of the plan that you have selected.
3. How much will a HealthCare International Medical Insurance policy cost?
This varies depending on a member's age, the plan selected, the deductible/excess and Co-Pay selected (see question 13). In the
first instance, our online "Fast Quote" will calculate an individual premium for you, subject to underwriting.
4. Do I need to supply details of my medical history?
Yes – we ask you to complete a simple medical questionnaire, and do our utmost to keep any restrictions placed against past
medical conditions to an absolute minimum. Providing detailed information about an existing or past medical condition will
help us to realistically evaluate treatment you may require in the future. This will help to ensure that you do not find yourself with
restrictions at point of claim.
5. What about pre-existing medical conditions?
We appreciate that some medical conditions may have taken place some time ago and no longer require treatment. In such cases
we try to be as flexible as possible in our underwriting and not automatically exclude past medical conditions. For this reason, it is
important that you provide as much information as possible when applying for cover so that we can properly evaluate your application.
A pre-existing condition could be an injury, illness, condition or symptom for which treatment, or medication, advice or diagnosis has been sought, or received or was foreseeable by you in the last five years prior to you joining the policy.
It would also be considered as a pre-existing condition if the injury, illness, condition or symptom originated or existed in the past five years whether or not treatment, medication, advice, or diagnosis was sought or received.
Any illness or condition occurring between the time you submit your application and the agreed start date of the policy will also be considered a pre-existing medical condition.
6. What is a moratorium?
It is a two-year period prior to you joining the scheme when treatment, medication, advice or diagnosis has been sought,
received or was foreseeable by you that will not be covered by us for the next two years. This is subject to you not receiving any
further treatment, medication, or advice for these pre-existing conditions in the next two years and this period is extended to
five years for Cardiac or Cancer conditions.
7. Are there any occupations that are not eligible to take our cover?
Yes – there are some professions, such as police, the armed forces, and sports professionals that require underwriting
evaluations and are subject to plan conditions and restrictions.
For further information please contact us at email@example.com.
8. In which countries can I have my treatment?
You can choose to have your treatment anywhere in the world, subject to the plan you choose, your area of cover, and pre-authorisation.
Treatment in the USA is, however, only available if you select our "Worldwide cover including USA", which is necessary for any member residing in the United States, unless you are a US citizen who spends part of the year back home and is covered under a domestic plan or entitled to state benefits such as Medicare.
Selecting our "Worldwide cover excluding USA" option does not prevent you from travelling there on trips as we will cover eligible emergency medical treatment up to 30 days (Emergency Plus, Standard, Plus), or 60 days (Premium or Executive Plans) per policy year.
9. Does everyone in the same family have to have the same level
Yes – you and your dependents will be covered on the same plan with the same chosen deductible/excess and Co-Pay. An age-rated
premium applies for each insured member.
10. What isn't covered by HealthCare International?
Inevitably, there are costs that we cannot cover. However, we try to keep restrictions to a minimum. These restrictions include preexisting
medical conditions during the moratorium period and a list of general exclusions that you will find in most medical insurance
policies, as detailed under your plan's policy terms and conditions.
11. Why are there waiting periods on some benefits?
Waiting periods apply to a few of our benefits to protect the premium investment made by our existing members. If we
had no waiting periods for our dental, optical or pregnancy benefits, people could join when treatment was required, claim
for an expensive procedure and cancel their membership until further medical assistance was necessary. This 'hit and run'
cycle of membership would cause premiums to escalate at an uncontrollable rate.
12. How does the deductible/excess work?
At HealthCare International, we offer three levels of deductible/excess. These are nil deductible/excess; $250; and $1000. Nil
deductible/excess will ensure that in most cases you will be reimbursed 100% of costs for your medical treatment (subject to the
policy terms and conditions). Having a deductible/excess of $250 or $1,000, however, offers a significant discount on your premium
and can be linked with your anticipated healthcare needs.
The deductible/excess applies to specific benefits on a 'per condition' basis. This means that your benefits will become available after you have met the eligible deductible/excess. Each condition is subject to the deductible/excess.
If you have renewed your policy and treatment continues into the new benefit year, unlike many of our competitors, you will not be penalised with having to pay another deductible/excess.
13. What is a Co-Pay and how does it work?
An additional way to reduce your premium is by opting for a Co-Pay. With this, you will share with us the cost of medical
expenses over and above your policy deductible/excess. Your maximum out-of-pocket expense is, however, capped at 20% of
$/€20,000 (£13,500) per condition. Any eligible expenses above the $/€20,000 (£13,500) will not be subject to the Co-Pay.
14. How do I apply for cover with HealthCare International?
If you require international medical insurance for you and your family, you can complete a secure online application form.
For corporate or group enquiries, just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will guide you through the process.
Individuals have the option of completing and submitting the form to us online, or alternatively downloading the document to complete, scan and send via e-mail or fax to our offices. You are welcome to request that we send by post, fax or e-mail the application form to you.
We will contact you to confirm that your application has been received and over the next few days your application will be processed. Subject to your application's acceptance, we will send you a Welcome Pack, (by post) normally within 7-10 working days of your policy being issued. If you apply on our website, we will also require an original signed and dated copy of your application form before we can pay for any claims made against your plan.
15. What are the options to pay for my policy?
Credit Card payment is our preferred method of collecting your premiums. If this is not possible, we can accept payment via
bankers draft, bank transfer, or cheque.
16. Does HealthCare International limit the amount that can be claimed for hospital accommodation?
No –once the treatment has been pre-authorised, we will settle all reasonable and customary charges for hospital accommodation,
in a standard en-suite hospital room, surgery and theatre fees etc., up to the maximum annual limits of each plan.
17. Am I covered if I get injured in a terrorist incident?
Yes – many policies apply a blanket exclusion for War and Terrorism risks, however in the unfortunate event that you find
yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time, which is what we would refer to as a passive participant, your policy would cover
you for medical treatment at either a local treatment centre or, if necessary, evacuation to a place of safety.
We do recommend that you are aware of any advice given by your consulate in relation to your area of cover.
18. Many insurance schemes exclude treatment for HIV/AIDS. Does HealthCare International cover HIV/AIDS?
Yes – unlike other insurance companies, HealthCare International does not exclude treatment for HIV/AIDS. We provide benefit
under all our plans subject to the condition being contracted from blood transfusion (during the period of insurance). We
also include cover for Chronic and Dread Diseases.
19. Is Pregnancy and Maternity care covered?
Yes – once you have been continuously insured with us for 12 months, both routine maternity and complications of pregnancy
are covered on all but our Emergency Plus Plan. We will pay 100% of reasonable and customary charges for in-patient and
out-patient treatment, up to the respective plan limits.
You are covered for treatment of a medical condition that arises during the antenatal stages of pregnancy, or for complications that require medical intervention during childbirth. Cover is only provided for caesarean sections if medically necessary. Elective caesareans, investigations and treatment for infertility are not covered.
20. Is dental treatment covered?
Yes – routine dental care is a standard feature of our Executive Plan and an optional extra for all other plans. This benefit
provides for preventative and routine dental cover and includes, subject to policy limits, the cost of dental crowns, bridges, dentures and implants.
21. Are Sporting and Professional activities covered?
There are no exclusions relating to usual (non professional, non-hazardous) sporting activities, unless specifically noted by HealthCare International in writing.
We may be able to provide cover for sportsmen and work-related activities, but it would be subject to underwriting so please do contact us for full information.
With the exception of professional sports, activities that are not classed as hazardous and/or dangerous will usually be covered.
Cover for dangerous or hazardous sports, professional sporting activities and work related activities can potentially be offered depending on the outcome of an individual assessment. Please contact us for full information.
22. Do I have a choice where my medical treatment is provided?
Members have a complete choice of where they have their treatment, and in the event of hospitalisation we will arrange for direct settlement with your
provider - avoiding the need to pay any expenses yourself.
23. What is Well Child Care and what does it cover?
The policy will pay for children's claims, up to the age of seven years, to visit their physician for routine checkups, to check the young child's growth
and development. Well Child Care can be covered up to 100% of reasonable and customary charges for, up to the benefit limits of the Plus, Premium and
24. Are out-patient treatments and consultations covered?
Out-patient treatments, such as X-rays, laboratory tests, and consultations are fully covered under the Executive Plan, up to 75% on the Plus and Premium Plans
and are not covered under the Standard and Emergency Plus Plans.
The deductible/excess does not apply to these out-patient benefits.
25. Can I include cover for alternative or complementary medical treatment?
Yes – our Executive Plan focuses on a more holistic approach to your total healthcare, including benefits of chiropractic treatments, osteopathy,
Chinese herbal medicine, homeopathy and acupuncture, up to a benefit limit of $400, €400 or £265 per policy year, depending on your chosen plan currency.
26. What is the Dread and Chronic Benefit?
If one of our policyholders develops a new disease, then the necessary treatment would normally come under day-care surgery or in-patient hospital care/out-patients,
until such time as the medical consultant states, that there is nothing more that can be done, other than medication or painkillers, then at that stage, the
policyholder's treatment would come under the Dread and Chronic disease benefit.
27. What is the difference between Hospital Cash Benefit vs Hospitalisation Cash Benefit?
The Hospital Cash Benefit is an amount of money that is paid to a policyholder, who is an in-patient in a hospital, that does not charge us, or the patient for
accommodation or medical expenses.
In this case, we are saving costs and therefore able to give a cash benefit to the policyholder, to use for any purpose.
The Hospitalisation Cash Benefit is a daily allowance (up to 50 days) that we give to policyholders, who are in hospital for more than 28 days and again can be used for any purpose. Any medical costs would be covered under in-patient hospital treatment and accommodation or day-care surgery/treatment.
28. Does my international medical plan cover me for holiday cancellation due to illness or injury?
No – however, holiday cancellation, as well as protection for other unforeseen travelling incidents such as lost baggage and legal expenses
are available under our Travel option.
29. What is the difference between an event and a condition?
Condition: this is a disease or physical ailment regardless of diagnoses, which is the condition the member is claiming for. The deductible/excess is payable per
Event: this is an occurrence of the condition, each condition may have one or several events, i.e. several trips to hospital for the one condition.
30. How quickly are claims normally settled?
Where we haven't arranged to settle directly with your medical provider, we aim to reimburse any eligible costs you may have paid, within 7-10 working days of
receiving your completed claim form, and the original invoices and receipts.
31. If a condition is excluded, how would you assess and determine if my claim is related/unrelated to the excluded condition?
Our claims team will assess any claims submitted based on the treating consultant/specialist's medical report. If they do not deem the condition to be related to the
excluded condition, then the condition would be covered, subject to benefit limits and policy terms and conditions.
32. What exchange rate will be used to settle my claim?
Where possible, we will settle your claim/invoices in the currency of your policy unless we are specifically requested to do otherwise.
Please note the exchange rate is based on the date your treatment took place, not the date the claim was submitted, and we are not responsible for any loss you may incur due to fluctuations in exchange rates, or for any bank charges you may incur when you receive a bank transfer, foreign bank draft or when you cash a cheque from us.
33. What must I do if I require day case or in-patient treatment?
Should you require in-patient treatment, contact the claims department prior to your admission for pre-authorisation. Where possible we will arrange for your medical
bills to be sent to our claims department for direct settlement of your bill, avoiding the need to pay any out of pocket expenses yourself.
Please have your HealthCare International Membership Card handy to help us manage the process as speedily as possible.
34. What happens if I become ill and medical facilities are limited?
In the event that local medical facilities are unable to treat your condition, you or your treating physician needs to contact our 24/7/365 Emergency Assistance
Centre immediately. If appropriate, we will then make the necessary arrangements on your behalf, and arrange for you to be transported or evacuated to the nearest
facility where you can be treated.
35. What do I need to do when I require non-emergency out-patient medical treatment?
We will need a claim form to be completed for each event. It is a two-part form, requiring both you and your treating physician to complete designated sections.
It is best that you take this form with you to your appointment. Once your treatment is complete, forward this form along with the original Invoices and receipts
to our claims department for assessment and, if eligible, reimbursement.
Claim forms are in your membership pack or can be downloaded from the "Members" section of our website.
36. What should I do if I change my address?
It is not necessary to inform us of brief travels out of your country of residence; however, any permanent or long term changes must be communicated to us as soon
as possible. We need to be able to inform you of any ongoing developments with your policy and provide you with updated correspondence.
37. What happens if I don't pay my premiums on time?
It is important that your premiums are paid on time to ensure you have no interruption to your cover. Failure to pay your premiums on time will likely result in
your claims being rejected, and/or your policy being cancelled.
38. What happens when my policy is due for renewal?
You do not have to do anything, as your policy will renew automatically. We will however be contacting you at least 70 days prior to renewal to inform you of
the premium for the upcoming year. We will also be telling you of any material changes to your policy and developments within our service proposition to you.
We remain ready and able to assist you at any time in ensuring your plan option remains appropriate for your circumstances.
Should you wish not to renew your policy with us, we will require written notification from you 60 days prior to the renewal date.
39. Will HealthCare International ever refuse to renew a policy, simply because a claim has been made?
No – as long as your premiums continue to be paid on time, you remain an expatriate (living outside your Home Country for most of the year)
and you have not misled us in any way, cover will remain in force.
40. What happens when I return to my Home Country?
The 'Home Country' is the country that you hold the passport to and we understand that many of our members living abroad occasionally return home for short visits,
where your cover will be continued depending on your plan and area of cover.
As our plans are tailored for expatriates, it does mean that you must be living outside your Home Country for at least six months each policy year.
41. What documents will I receive from HealthCare International when I take out a policy?
Once cover has been confirmed you will receive a comprehensive membership folder including the following:
- Certificate of Insurance
- A membership card
- Details of our 24-hour emergency assistance service
- Claim instructions and some claim forms
- A list of useful contacts
- Member Pack including information on general health and medical matters.
42. When can I change the details of my policy?
Changes to your benefit level can only be made at renewal and you will need to inform us within 30 days of your renewal date. Any waiting periods will
still have to be served.
43. What if I need to cancel my policy?
If you are not entirely satisfied with your chosen cover, we will cancel the plan from inception and make a full refund of your premium, providing that you
inform us within 14 days of the date of issue stated on your Certificate and that no claim or visa applications have been made.
If we have already issued your policy documents, you will have to return these to us before we can issue a refund.
44. Who governs HealthCare International?
We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), England No.314761. www.fsa.gov.uk. We are also registered with Companies House
in England & Wales No. 5290382. Registered Office: 2 Charles Street, London, W1J 5DB, United Kingdom.
We are committed to treating customers fairly, we adhere to the Data Protection Act 1998 and are also a founding member of AIMIP.