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Travel Insurance Post Diagnosis

Do I Need Travel Insurance?

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The two basic reasons to purchase travel insurance are:

  • To reduce or eliminate your out-of-pocket costs if the trip is cancelled or interrupted for reasons beyond your control, such as the tour operator goes out of business. 
  • To cover the expense, and make arrangements, in case you need medical care while traveling.

To determine whether you need travel insurance, and if so, what coverages, check all your insurance policies to determine what coverage you already have. For example, check your:


  • Homeowners Insurance to see whether your belongings are covered while traveling.
  • Health insurance.
    • Private Insurance
      • Typically, you have to pay out of pockeet and submit a claim when you return - if your policy provides coverage at all.
      • A managed care type policy generally does not cover when traveling, even in the U.S.
    • Medicare generally doesn't cover health care costs outside the U.S., although some Medigap policies do provide limited coverage.
    • Medicaid programs generally refuse to pay for anything other than life-or-death emergency room visits and emergency hospitalizations in other states. (Medicaid can also pay for regular care in state border areas such as Washington, D.C., and New York City where patients could get care in adjoining suburban states.) Medicaid does not pay for care outside of the United States.
    • State programs for the needy generally require participants to be a resident of the state and assume that a long absence (such as 30 days) indicates a loss of residency.
    • Veterans: see below.

If you do not already have health insurance that will cover while traveling, it is generally recommended that everyone with a pre-existing medical condition purchase travel insurance. 

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