Health Insurance Question

Hi,

I will be traveling to PH for a 2 month stay mid January. I have Medicare with a Medicare Advantage Plan, and I checked with them to see whether I have coverage in PH. They said I did, up to $25k USD. Should this be sufficient, or should I purchase additional insurance?

I have that same coverage but told can’t use it here! Where may I ask did they say you could be treated here and covered? $25000 should work!

I don't think there are restrictions as to where to obtain treatment, but I would have to pay out of pocket, then be reimbursed once back in the USA.

Hi
Thanks! I will check it out! They have KP here and I have double coverage as I am working for a Engineering firm out of San Diego! I haven’t tried using it but am hoping it works!

lasvegan :

Hi
Thanks! I will check it out! They have KP here and I have double coverage as I am working for a Engineering firm out of San Diego! I haven’t tried using it but am hoping it works!

They are different companies - you need to check that out. I found that out when I had KP in the Pacific NW and tried to apply for a Philippines KP plan.

moonunit0103 :

Hi,

I will be traveling to PH for a 2 month stay mid January. I have Medicare with a Medicare Advantage Plan, and I checked with them to see whether I have coverage in PH. They said I did, up to $25k USD. Should this be sufficient, or should I purchase additional insurance?

$25K USD goes a long way in the Phiippines. I just pay cash out of pocket and most doctor's visits are only about $10-20, maybe $50 with a lab test and a prescription. I had an MRI on my knee a couple years ago - $240 including two office visits. Hope that gives you an idea. I keep US coverage in the event of something serious, in which case I will head back, and I do all my routine checkups there.

As a tourist you should get travel insurance.

Think about the cost of having to get flown back to your home country for treatment for a serious medical condition.  Nothing under $100,000 usd just for a medical flight.

Be aware that some travel insurance companies will not cover you (evening if you have taken out the insurance with them) if you travel to certain parts of the Philippines.

$25000 is a lot for the Philippines and given that is over a million pesos it would cover most illnesses.  You can google something like 'costs of medical issues in the Philippines' to get an idea of possible costs.  I believe heart bypass surgery can be around $13000, cancer would be more depending on the type.

My girlfriend's sister was in the 3rd best private hospital here in Cebu for 8 days (with dengue) and the private room was 2300 pesos a day ($48) and the cost of the room, emergency for 24 hours, labs, prescriptions, x-rays, a primary doctor and consultations 2 other specialists ended up being $1200 US.

Hope this helps
Bruce

In the ends the amount of self insurance depends on what you want to insure yourself for?

Aerial Medical evacuation from a remote island in the Philippines to a 1st world hospital in Singapore and treatment there -about $100,000 USD.  Or treatment of basic non-life threatening conditions.

We all know that every year thousands of Filipino's die because the can not afford treatment of life threatening conditions that (eg in Australia) are fully covered by government medical insurance.

Yes it's amazing how many things can kill you when you don't have a basic level of health care.

In the past few years my girlfriend has lost two siblings to cancer (both under 50), an uncle to dengue and at least two cousins to other preventable diseases. Most of which would have been diagnosed and possibly prevented had they been getting annual checkups. It's just shocking. And they're not living in the jungle either although the general lack of awareness and health knowledge is disturbing. They often can't afford, or put a priority on regular checkups or prescription medications. No wonder they want to believe in miracle cures.

The other disturbing thing is the lack of pain management drugs. It's so bad that it's documented by the UN as abnormally low on the list of per capita pain medication use by country. You just can't get much of anything other than Paracetamol, or a very mild blend of Paracetamol/Tramadol - anything stronger and you need to be in a hospital where the pharmacist is allowed to dispense to a resident physician. The restrictions are very tight, so forget it at home where most Filipinos die. As a result the pain in the end of life if there is cancer is terrible.

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