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HSBC health Insurance

HI I'm moving to Saigon in September and need to sort out Healthcare cover. I looks like HSBC do an OK level of cover - is the cover level OK for western style hospitals costs in Saigon? Or would you recommend a more expensive , but fully covered option?
Cheers

I took out health insurance with HSBC some months ago.I know others on this site have also and the assistant in the HSBC branch said she regularly has expat customers for the insurance product so with luck we can,t all be doing something wrong.However,all insurance companies,in Vietnam or any other country don,t give a hoot about your health,they are there to make a profit and for myself it remains to be seen that if I make a claim...will they pay out? .There has been many comments on this site regarding that situation and you should have some interesting posts on this thread to give you further information.The HSBC insurance is at a reasonable cost,for myself ( I am 61) just under £500  for the " privaliged" option with no outpatient cover ,although now I wish I had taken outpatient cover as I have had a number of health problems which cost money out of my pocket,other policy's being far more mature expensive for similar cover .
I have posted under a previous thread " Help for Aussies with medical insurance"  some other information and thoughts,perhaps you would like to have a look for it.If you cannot find it PM me and I,ll send you a couple of screenshots.
It has been brought up by others here that individual hospitals offer insurance themselves at a reasonable cost,perhaps this might be worth looking at,but the problem there is that if you are not local to that hospital or travelling within Vietnam then treatment is not available to you although you have paid for it...if you are to b local then you might find it an option.......try FV Hospital Hcmc.....I have been treated there,it's clean,very professional and to Western standards and they speak English
I hope this helps...enjoy your stay in Vietnam

thanks for your pointer to the other posts Gareth  very useful!

I would suggest you do not choose anything on HSBC, you might regret with bunch of reason in the future

Coll-wing :

I would suggest you do not choose anything on HSBC, you might regret with bunch of reason in the future

Give us the reasons as to why you say this. The insurance is not HSBC, its Bao Viet.

Would be very interested myself in the reasons not to go for HSBC .

Gareth Uk :

Would be very interested myself in the reasons not to go for HSBC .

How about the fact that the parent corporation was fined $1.9 billion (with a "b") for money laundering.  I know the US banks are no angels but they are compared to HSBC.  Remember they have Hong Kong and Shanghai in their origin story and they were founded right after Britain won the Second Opium War for the right to sell opium in China.  Deutsche Bank may be coming in a close second.

I guess it is understandable that someone who comes from a country with public health care would consider this a revelation

Gareth Uk :

...all insurance companies,in Vietnam or any other country don,t give a hoot about your health,they are there to make a profit.....

however it is readily apparent to anyone from the US.   :mad:  The current debate in the US is called "Healthcare" but it is really a debate over how the private health insurance market will be structured.

Hsbc is not the insurer, Bao Viet are, its that simple.

I understand what you are saying Colin, that it's like one of those in-name-only Trump hotels.   But I still ask if you are comfortable with buying something that a criminal enterprise has attached its name to (or stay in a Trump hotel.)

Well if you looked into the history of many companies you will find some criminal record. Let's not forget who created the last world global crisis.

I'm ok with HSBC, as the policy is not done through them, they are basically just the middle man.

Cant you go direct to the source and cut out the middle man? It would be cheaper too.

I use HSBC as they have English speaking staff and were easy to deal with. Sure it may cost a little cheaper going to Bao Viet, but first you have to find someone to converse with in English.

HSBC and Bao Viet both only insure people who are under 65.  What will happen after a person passes that mark? Will he have to find other companies and pay higher premium?

Ciambella :

HSBC and Bao Viet both only insure people who are under 65.  What will happen after a person passes that mark? Will he have to find other companies and pay higher premium?

Most insurance companies do this, over 65 and up go the premiums. As you know, insurance companies arent there to be nice to the average punter.

colinoscapee :

I use HSBC as they have English speaking staff and were easy to deal with. Sure it may cost a little cheaper going to Bao Viet, but first you have to find someone to converse with in English.

Yep understood.

It seems that HSBC is the same as a very large percentage of companies and individuals who are crooked in this gerenally crooked country. The Uk has its fair share of the same.I worked for one such company and I have no doubt that these companies infest most ,if not all,countries but do we all not do buisness with them? We have to realistic.....life would not happen.It has been highlighted that HSBC,the company,is crooked but not that the insurance it offers is bad in any form ...as yet
The OP is arriving in Vn in just over a month and her main interest is being insured when she does.No point in being ethically correct with no insurance arranged if she ,and I hope not,gets run over by a bus.
As per Collinoscapee HSBC is only an agent acting for Bao Viet.If you try to take out insurance with Bao Viet online it passes you off to the HSBC site.When I asked specific questions on taking out the insurance at the HSBC branch,for the questions the assistant could not answer herself she telephoned Bao Viet for advice.
To be ethically pure you can avoid HSBC totally and the insurance premium/benefits will be more or less the same.I have posted screenshots of  details of paperwork obtained at the main Bao Viet office on the previous post which I have referred to alongside the HSBC details.A visit to Bao Viet main office,which from memory is alongside HSBC in District 1 will no doubt enable insurance to be obtained
I have no problem dealing with HSBC.
To answer Ciembella,s question
You are correct both companies offer insurance to 65.I am 61 but I did look around at insurance for the future and there are very few companies which would accept a policy for after 65.The  premiums are horrendous.Tenzing Insurance Services are a broker here in Hcmc ,on their site is a list of insurance companies who they use,I,m sure you will find one there for over 65.....

Hi Gareth,
Thanks for the research and info you've done.

Is the validity of cover affected by your classification of Visa. ?
Do you need to have a Temparary residence card to be covered ?

I've been "involved" with insurance companies for a long time and their first priority is to look for an escape hatch to avoid a claim.  In the event of a claim , the first questions they start asking are all about "sniffing" for any form of exclusion they can apply.   

A lot of expats here are on tourist visas.   They come and go, and use VN as a base for travel within the region, and a lot would have travel insurance hopefully that would cover accidents here , which we are mainly concerned about.   Any pre existing conditions are NOT covered , but if you knew you required a serious operation to treat an existing condition , I'd be on a plane out of here to a better medical facility.

I might enquire about that situation.  Since a lot of us are officially tourists , does the domestic health insurance apply.  They could possibly say " claim on your travel insurance "   

And as for those on these 12mth "business " Visas , I'm wondering if that would affect the cover. 
Because if you read most policy documents, the exclusions are endless.  You begin to wonder what your actually covered for.

To Yogi
Had a quick look at the small print in regards to visa/ temporary residence card and there is nothing mentioned.
Being married to a Vietnamese.I am here under a  visa waiver,extending it every 3 months.When I took out the insurance the assistant looked at the passport and visa waiver stamp but after travelling to Vietnam for nearly 10 years and more or less being a resident for the last 18 months ,now knowing  a little how corrupt and unfair it is,I am under no illusion that if the insurance company can use anyway,shape or form,including incorrect visa or other form of passport associated documentation mistake to avoid a pay out in the event of a claim ,then they will do so,and I guess the same would go for others also.
I spent months looking at insurance company policy's after my arrival looking for a suitable policy and it's a minefield,the insurance companies in Vietnam must know this and use it to their advantage and I came to the conclusion before I elected for the HSBC policy that once I had done all I could to choose the correct company and policy then I can do no more and have to be happy with my decision
One of the main factors in my HSBC choice is that they have offices here in Hcmc and to my mind dealing with a claim is far easier over the counter and less stressful as opposed to dealing with an international company by email or telephone on the other side of the world.On this point,if any " tourists" take out local company insurance while here I think the same can be said there,in the event of a claim they would have little chance of a successful claim made from their home country, if they have to return home before completing the claim.
For tourists,the local insurance company can tell you to make a claim on your domestic travel insurance policy,it's an easy " out " for them....don,t inform them of any other insurance you have
The same as yourself....if I think I have something serious going on health wise then I,m on the plane out of here.I have had a number of small health problems requiring outpatient treatment and I am not impressed with what I see.I have not a lot of confidence in the doctors here...that is a personal view...others might have had better experiences......others might have good experiences with insurance companies and if so please let's hear from you...I might help the OP.

Thanks Gareth,
There is certainly a lot of "escape" hatches these insurance companies rely on to avoid paying.

Then you have to put up with the bullshit the hospitals come out with.
Here in Nha Trang about 5 years ago , a British guy working here had the health insurance we are talking about.

He collapsed at a restaurant with severe breathing problems. A friend of mine took him to the local hospital here and they wanted $700 CASH just to admit him for ANY form of treatment.   He got his friend to go to his apartment and get the health insurance policy details......they still wanted CASH , and this guy is lying on the floor of the  hospital entry foyer gasping. 

Unbelievable.

Thats pretty standard in Viet Nam.

Your right there Colin,

Problem was the pommy bloke didn't have the $700.😬

Did he make it?....still alive?

Yogi007 :

Your right there Colin,

Problem was the pommy bloke didn't have the $700.😬

I hear ya!
Unfortunately in the world we live in, the dollar has become more important than lives, very sad world.

Yogi007 :

He collapsed at a restaurant with severe breathing problems. A friend of mine took him to the local hospital here and they wanted $700 CASH just to admit him for ANY form of treatment.   He got his friend to go to his apartment and get the health insurance policy details......they still wanted CASH , and this guy is lying on the floor of the  hospital entry foyer gasping.

colinoscapee :

Thats pretty standard in Viet Nam.

It's not just in VN.  We were at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam when a French man collapsed a few steps from us.  Medics arrived, wheeled him out of the museum, but refused to lift him into the ambulance until his French wife procured an insurance card.  She frantically went through her large shoulder bag, then his backpack, while cursing and complaining a mile a minute.  She found it after quite a long while, finally, and off they went.

This discussion has revealed a downside to retirement in Vietnam.  Some retirement medical schemes may pay for medical work in Vietnam but others may not.  Here is what I know (mostly hearsay):

US:  1) Private pension schemes may include medical insurance but most drop the policy when the pensioner reached Medicare (65) age.
2) Medicare stops at the water's edge.
3) TriCare (for US military pensioners) pays worldwide.  This is per 70 years old who I say apprehensively has not posted here lately.

Canada: (second hand info)  Canadian health care has a residency requirement so if a Canadian stays out of Canada too long, they must return and reside for some period (?) to reestablish benefits.  Might not be good in an emergency.  No info on overseas claims.

Britain:  Believe NHS only covers people inside the country.  In any case as I understand it, NHS is not really insurance but direct government service.  It may be available as soon as you get off the plane but I don't know.  (My grandfather who was born in Britain and retired there told me once how amazed he was that NHS doctors would not accept his US union-based insurance.)

AU & NZ:  No info.

Day to day medical expenses can be quite reasonable in Vietnam and I don't see too much need to insure for them but needing an operation could be problematic.  I recently underwent two knee replacement surgeries that were nearly fully paid for by Medicare which I get through the Kaiser HMO.  If I had done them in Vietnam they would have been at least $5000 each which is way way less than an uninsured operation in the US but a lot more than the net after insurance.  Perhaps the best insurance for elective surgery for Americans is keep your Medicare and a have funds for a ticket home.  Emergency work could be a big problem. 

Does anyone have any first hand experience in obtaining insurance for persons over 65?  Hospitalization only would be fine.

THIGV :

Does anyone have any first hand experience in obtaining insurance for persons over 65?  Hospitalization only would be fine.

Not first hand experience, but the friend to whom we sold our car before leaving the States *swore* that his brother received reimbursement for a hospital expense incurred in VN.  At first, he said the reimbursement was from Medicare, until after much probing, I found out that the brother in question had a Medigap plan as supplemental to Medicare.

https://www.medicare.gov/supplement-oth … ravel.html

He didn't know the type of policy his brother had, but I suspected that said brother continued to pay insurance as a CA residence even though he spent more time in VN than in the States.


THIGV :

Perhaps the best insurance for elective surgery for Americans is keep your Medicare and a have funds for a ticket home.  Emergency work could be a big problem.

Keeping Medicare is not the issue.  By law, it'll be there for you when you return to the States.  It's Part B (outpatient care, preventive services, ambulance services), Part C (Medicare Advantage), and Part D (prescription drug, which is a redundant expense for a redundant service) are what you need to decide whether you would want to keep when you move overseas.  Spouse never had C and D, but he was told by Medicare when he dropped Part B that upon returning to the States, he'll be penalized by 10% for each year he's not enrolled.

So, for major surgery that is not urgent, you can always return home and have it done.


Spouse is going to subscribe to the VIP Membership programme that FV Hospital offers (sort of like being insured with Kaiser HMO; everything is in house.)  I've had many conversations with them, and as of right now, I believe it's the best and most affordable option for him (over 65 and with a pre-exisiting condition.) 


THIGV :

Day to day medical expenses can be quite reasonable in Vietnam and I don't see too much need to insure for them but needing an operation could be problematic.

If you will not be bothered about the cost of outpatient care (including lab work), their Privilege Membership could be a good option for you.  Very affordable.

Nephew by marriage, a German physician here in Saigon, has many good things to say about FV.

http://www.fvhospital.com/insurance-mem … embership/

FV hospital is not at all bad. I have had some treatment there in the last couple of years and it was as good as anything in UK - and far less expensive, actually. Yeah I know that for me, medical and hospital care in the UK is free, having paid into the NHS all my working life, but I'm talking about the different costs between paying privately in UK and paying privately in Vn (at the FV).

The Dr., who treated me at FV is a Vietnamese bloke and I can honestly say that he is sharper (i.e. a very good diagnostician who can explain his diagnoses in English without bullshitting) than many "western" Dr's I have had dealings with.

On another occasion I went to a local Vietnamese hospital in HCMC for a routine annual medical which included a CT scan (because a chest x-ray revealed some shadows on my left lung*). I have to say that, whilst the venue isn't as smart and cheerful as the FV hospital (and the staff had a slight tendency to treat patients as cattle), the blood tests, x-rays and CT scan were all done very professionally, albeit with a lot of queueing and waiting. And it was half the price of FV.

On the matter of health insurance: I had a policy with a UK company called Sun Life of Canada, which was supposed to pay my mortgage and living costs in the UK if I became ill and unable to work.

I did become ill and unable to work so I tried to make a claim. At first the insurance company delayed responding to me. Then they required masses of forms to be filled in. Then they tried to say that they didn't have to pay out because "there was evidence that I had been a smoker" (When I took the policy out, I had declared that I had stopped smoking some ten years before and they had accepted that without applying any penalties or clauses).

Eventually after about a year of wrangling and bullshit, they sent me a check of about 5000 quid, supposedly returning all the payments I had made over the previous 5 years or so.

* The CT scan revealed that the x-ray "shadows" were actually from healed rib fractures.

What's the name of the local Vietnamese hospital you went to?

Ciambella :

What's the name of the local Vietnamese hospital you went to?

Buggered if I can remember. It was up a side street, but quite big when you got inside and had about 5 or more floors. I'll ask the LHD for the name of it when she comes in. We went there because a mate of LHD that she went to Uni with is a prof of forensics somewhere and the chief Dr is a mate of his (you know how it is in Vn?).

The hospital is a bit short on sensitivity  though. Whilst I was waiting for the results of my CT scan, the bloke sitting next to me who had been scanned before me got his results on a bit of paper, which his wife asked someone to explain what it meant. She gave the bit of paper to another bloke in the queue who read it out:

"It says he has lung cancer". Said the bloke reading it out loud.

eodmatt :

"It says he has lung cancer". Said the bloke reading it out loud.

Good Lord !

eodmatt :

Buggered if I can remember. It was up a side street, but quite big when you got inside and had about 5 or more floors.

From your description it sounds just like Trung Tâm Y Khoa Medic  but people including my internist seem to just call it Medic.  It's on a side street in Q10 with parking inside at street level.   It was kind of a madhouse of crowds and lines with  very few signs in English inside but the actual work they did seemed professional.  My internist sent me there for a PSA and an ultrasound of my prostate which was no fun.  My wife said that conversations she had with people while we were waiting told her that this place is favored by people who come from the countryside for tests, hence the crowds.  I am not even aware if they have inpatient services.  I think it is just a giant clinic set up for things like your CT scan and my ultrasound.  Full address is 254 Hoà Hảo, phường 4, Quận 10.

THIGV :
eodmatt :

Buggered if I can remember. It was up a side street, but quite big when you got inside and had about 5 or more floors.

From your description it sounds just like Trung Tâm Y Khoa Medic  but people including my internist seem to just call it Medic.  It's on a side street in Q10 with parking inside at street level.   It was kind of a madhouse of crowds and lines with  very few signs in English inside but the actual work they did seemed professional.  My internist sent me there for a PSA and an ultrasound of my prostate which was no fun.  My wife said that conversations she had with people while we were waiting told her that this place is favored by people who come from the countryside for tests, hence the crowds.  I am not even aware if they have inpatient services.  I think it is just a giant clinic set up for things like your CT scan and my ultrasound.  Full address is 254 Hoà Hảo, phường 4, Quận 10.

Yep thats the place, as confirmed by my ever loving LHD, just now. And I confirm that the actual work they did was indeed professional - being a (lapsed) radiographer myself, I was happy with the way they did the x-ray pics they took of my lungs and have no criticism of the CT scan they did with what seemed to be the latest Japanese technology. I had a peek inside the lab where the blood testing was done too and it seemed state of the art as I recognise it. I also had to have a pee test for some reason and was given a fruit flavoured drink with some chemical added which could be detected (or not, or whatever) in the sample I provided some time later.

The ECG was also a lot more thorough than the one I had in UK a good few years ago and more thorough than the one I had done at a clinic in Peru 7 years ago when I had a lung infection there.

I also heard the comment made that people come from all over south and central Vietnam to have diagnostic tests done at that particular hospital / clinic..

According to their website, its common name was (and still is) Bệnh Viện Hòa Hảo even though the official name was Medic Hòa Hảo from its inception in 1990 until the name was changed to Trung Tâm Y Khoa Medic in 2015. 

Am Thuc & Suc Khoe (Food & Health) website said they received complaints from patients who "were shocked" and "felt cheated" because they travelled from afar, expecting to be treated by the old trusted hospital only to end up with a trickster !   :/ 

High reviews from most patients, except the ones who didn't like to call a rose by any another name.

I'm trying to figure out all the NEW Vietnamese medical terms so I can understand their price list.  The English language option is not working.

Ciambella :

I'm trying to figure out all the NEW Vietnamese medical terms so I can understand their price list.  The English language option is not working.

Changes in the Vietnamese language from '55 to '75 and from '75 to now would be an interesting research topic for some grad student in linguistics.  It's partly technology but also the pervasive effect of American culture.   France has a whole government office to stop it with French, but it still happens.  Sorry :offtopic:

:offtopic:

THIGV :

Changes in the Vietnamese language from '55 to '75 and from '75 to now would be an interesting research topic for some grad student in linguistics.  It's partly technology but also the pervasive effect of American culture.   France has a whole government office to stop it with French, but it still happens.

The change was not for the better, believe me, and not just in technology nor due to the influence of any foreign culture. 

One quick example before we get too far afield from the topic:  the word "contact" was "liên lạc" in the past.  After 1975, it became "liên hệ", which has a completely different meaning.  "Liên hệ" is a bastardisation of "quan hệ" or "relationship".  Every time I see "liên hệ" preceding a telephone number on a website, billboard, or sign at a shop, I want to wring someone's neck. 

Hundreds of good and correct terms were destroyed and replaced by rubbish, and thousands of nonsensically made up terms were added to the old vocab literally overnight.  The younger generation (born in the '70s and after) doesn't know any better (ignorant is truly bliss in this case),  but for the rest of us, it's upsetting and frustration to no end.

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