Nothing ruins a trip faster than an unexpected bill, meaning that it is super important to ensure you have correct and adequate travel insurance before jetting off.
Holidaymakers tend to think that travel insurance will provide you with cover for all pre-existing medical conditions, but this certainly isn’t always the case.
In fact, the majority of travel insurance policies only provide automatic cover for a limited number of pre-existing conditions, such as asthma, diabetes or high cholesterol, so it’s critical to let your travel insurance provider know if you have a medical condition they should know about.
That way, if something does happen abroad, you’re able to get the medical attention you need and you won’t be left out-of-pocket.
However, worrying new research by comparetravelinsurance.com.au revealed nearly one in two Australian travellers don’t know which pre-exisiting medical conditions to declare when buying travel insurance.
“These findings show that a vast number of Australians risk travelling without sufficient cover,” Natalie Ball, director at comparetravelinsurance.com.au, says.
“In the event that you require hospitalisation or emergency assistance, travellers who haven’t disclosed their prior medical conditions could be uninsured and therefore liable for tens of thousands in medical costs.”
Not sure if your condition is covered? Here’s everything you need to know:
Generally speaking, a pre-existing medical condition is an injury, sickness or condition, for which treatment, medication, investigation, surgery or advice has been received, Ball explains.
Additionally, if you don’t declare your condition, you’re not just liable for any medical costs you incur overseas, your insurance provider can also choose to cancel your policy altogether.
“The problem with omitting your pre-existing condition is that you risk invalidating your whole policy,” Ball adds.
“You have a duty of disclosure. By knowingly withholding crucial information your insurer may choose not to cover any of your travel expenses, full stop.”
To avoid unexpected healthcare costs, Ball recommends playing it safe and listing any recent condition(s) you can remember.
“Most insurers define a pre-existing condition fairly broadly. In simple terms, if you have sought medical attention for it at any time, it may be worth declaring,” she explains.
“Our best advice would be to speak to your insurer and be as transparent as possible. Answer all questions and check with your doctor if you have to.”
According to comparetravelinsurance.com.au, the following are some of the most common pre-existing medical conditions that will need to be declared:
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