International Travel Medical Insurance to the Middle East

Traveling to the Middle East for a long term work assignment, or for study, or as a contractor working abroad.

The Policy

International Travel Medical Insurance protects you in many ways.  It offers access to quality medical professionals regardless of where you are in the world.  The coverage benefits are typically better than some of the best domestic ACA plans.

Quote:   GeoBlue     Cigna Global

You have 24 hour access to a team of specialists waiting to help you through your situation or provide you with information pertaining to where you are.

Your plan can provide long term coverage for you and your family, who need coverage for a year, several years or up to permanent protection.

You have custom phone and tablet apps that allow you to search for doctors and hospitals in your area and view their profiles.  Fill prescriptions, schedule appointments, forward you ID card or show proof of insurance.

GeoBlue                 Cigna Global

Also, make sure your policy includes “emergency medical evacuation.” This coverage provides air evac services to a medical facility that can properly care for your illness or accident.  The air transport can take you to another city, country or back to your home country for care.  Many parts of the world have limited medical services.  If you find yourself in one of these area and need medical attention, you can be assured your international medical coverage will pay for the emergency evacuation services so you can be cared for by medical professionals.

Quality long term international medical companies like Cigna Global and GeoBlue, use a contracted doctor network which has been established around the globe.  These network doctors offer direct payment from the insurance company so you don’t have to pay for the services.  These companies also allow you to see out of network doctors and hospitals with no out of pocket penalty.


If you enroll into a long term (more than 6 months) individual or family international plan yo will need to answer some medical questions pertaining to your current and past health status. After the review the company will either approve your enrollment or decline it.

Medical underwriting review at the time of application prevents the company from scrutinizing every claim and looking back at your pre-existing conditions. Most other companies will have very limited underwriting at the time of application, but will thoroughly review every claim that is submitted and may determine the claim was the result of a pre-existing condition and decline the claim.

Please contact me anytime so we can discuss which company will work best for you.

John Conner

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Travel Insurance Pre Existing Conditions and Exclusions

I am often asked; “why is there such a big difference in premiums between companies and their long-term international medical plans?

Long-term policies will have some type of medical underwriting or approval based on your health status. One of the primary differences is how a company determines, excludes and or covers “pre-existing” conditions.

First Example:  Some companies offer plans with very good benefits coupled with low premiums.  In this example the company most likely undergoes very limited medical underwriting or review at the time of application.

In this case the company will most likely underwrite and investigate every claim to determine if the medical services provided are from a “pre-existing condition.”  The verbiage below is the actual wording of an International medical insurance company:

Any medical condition, sickness, injury, illness, disease, mental illness, or mental nervous disorder, regardless of the cause, including any congenital, chronic subsequent, or recurring complications or consequences related thereto or resulting therefrom that with reasonable medical certainty existed at the time of application or any time during the 12 months prior to the coverage start date of this policy, whether or not previously manifested, symptomatic, known, diagnosed, treated or disclosed.

This specifically includes but is not limited to any medical condition, sickness, injury, illness, disease, mental illness, or mental nervous disorder, for which medical advice diagnosis, care or treatment was recommended or received or for which a reasonably prudent person would have sought treatment during the 12 months immediately preceding the coverage start date of this policy.

The above verbiage is very unsettling. This is an example of a company who can dispute or deny just about any claim that is reviewed.

Second Example:  more reliable companies will go through a bit heavier underwriting and review before the application is approved.  If approved the new member knows they will not be scrutinized every time they have a claim.

The GeoBlue Xplorer long-term medical plan does not cover services for treatment of a medical condition for which medical advice, diagnosis, care, or treatment was recommended or received during 180 days immediately preceding the member’s eligibility date.

Although, the 180-day pre-existing conditions period can be reduced or eliminated if you have been covered by a creditable group or individual health insurance plan.

The GeoBlue clause above is much more reasonable and fair.

Ultimately, how a company views pre-existing conditions will determine the quality of a policy.

The last thing you want as a policy holder is to have a claim declined when you need them the most.  Only to find out, they determined the claim was a pre-existing condition you didn’t even know you had.

For a person or family needing a long-term international medical plan, be sure to look into, or ask about the pre-existing condition coverage and exclusions clauses and definitions. It will help with your decision.

Also, companies who do not medically underwrite at the time of application, will generally go through a medical review at the “time of claim,” which means they will look at your health history and determine if the current claim is the result of a pre-existing condition.  It they believe it is, the claim will most likely be denied.

On the other hand, companies that underwrite before the policy is approved, generally to not go through a medical review at the time of claim and the claims are typically processed quite quickly.


Please feel free to contact me anytime with questions regarding international medical companies, plans, or any of the above mentioned clauses and definitions.

John Conner

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