Is it Worth Paying More to Have $500,000 Medical Coverage?

by Steve Dasseos on August 20, 2023

An update on my being healed from Long Covid: I am still free of Long Covid and I explained how it happened it in detail here on April 12, 2023. Since then, dozens of people have contacted me telling me that they’ve been taking 5 – 20 grams of Glycine every day with positive results. I take it and also give 1 gram a day to my little dogs.

And, by the Grace of God, TripInsuranceStore.com has been busy. That’s why I haven’t written anything here since April 12, 2023.

Hi Steve, Thanks for sending me the quotes, but we only want to see Travel Insurance plans that have at least $500,000 Primary Medical. We know it’s very expensive to be hospitalized here in the USA, and are sure it’s even more expensive outside the USA. We’re on Medical with plan G Medigap plans. Why do you only have one plan with $500,000 Primary Medical? Thanks, Peter and Lynn

Hi Peter and Lynn,

I only have one plan with $500,000 Primary Medical because you don’t need more medical. I often say, “If you have a medical claim outside the USA for more than $100,000, you don’t need to worry about doing the claim paperwork.” In my opinion, the high medical limits are a gimmick to induce someone to pay more for Travel Insurance coverage they will never need.

You’re right about medical care being expensive here in the USA. Howver, it’s the opposite outside the USA. The most expensive medical claim I have ever seen was $74,000. The guy had a heart attack in Singapore in 2015. Accounting for inflation, it’s a still lot less expensive to get ill or injured in other countries.

And, the most expensive medical transportation / evacuation I helped arrange was $127,000. It was on medical jet with a team of six doctors flying from Johannesburg, South Africa to the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. Using a medical jet for a long distance transport isn’t very common. The majority are done on commercial airlines with medical escorts. The $127,000 transport was paid by someone who didn’t have any travel insurance.

In fact, MedjetAssist states they “maintain a global network of authorized affiliates that provides access to medically equipped aircraft as well utilizing commercial airlines with medical escorts”.

As for the cost of medical care outside the USA, prior to the Covid pandemic, the fastest growing travel segment was Medical Tourism, aka Health Tourism. The CDC defines it as “Medical tourism is the term commonly used to describe international travel for the purpose of receiving medical care.” https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2024/health-care-abroad/medical-tourism

I recently had a customer who, as he was walking around Panama City, had a heart attack. He was in the hospital for 10 days until he was stable enough for a medical transport to a hospital close to his South Carolina home. In addition, his wife was provided a room and meals in the hospital. The final bill was just over $31,000 while the transport was about $40,000!

Since 2001, I’ve have hundreds of medical claims where the medical and transport costs were substatially less expensive than they would have cost in the USA.

In my own experience, I lived in Mexico and Guatemala from August 1985 to July 1986. I never even thought about getting travel medical coverage which was dumb because it would’ve been inexpensive for a 28 year old. In January 1986 I went to the dentist in Antigua, Guatemala for a lot of cavities and a much-needed cleaning. He profusely apologized to me because he had to charge me triple because he knew I could afford it as a US Citizen. The bill came to US $71.


I hope this makes sense. If you want the right travel insurance advice, call us at 1-888-407-3854 and we'll help you figure it all out.

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