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  #1  
Old 08-15-2007
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Health / Medical Insurance for Cruisers

Hey all~

I have done due diligence and searched both this site and SSCA, and found nothing truly helpful on this topic. I really need some help, and I know from doing lots of searching that I'm not alone in this dilemma. We're quitting jobs soon and moving onto the boat, planning to start cruising asap. The present obstacle, a serious one, is health insurance. We're in our early 50's (yikes! that sounds old!) and quite healthy, at least so we thought until we started looking for insurance. Long story short (you're welcome! )-- of the thousands of companies in existance, all of them would be happy to "insure" our healthy 19 yr-old son, and there might even be a few who are willing to receive a monthly donation of $500-$1000 from us, but we're not at all convinced that, if we need any help from them in return, they'll be there.

So here's the question, which sounds oh so much simpler than it is~~ can anyone recommend, from personal experience, a reasonably priced, dependable health insurance plan that works in both US and abroad?? I know that everyone is different, and that we might all pick different variations of an ideal plan, but give me somewhere to start-- give me a name. Thanks.

Last edited by SuzySailor; 08-16-2007 at 06:24 AM. Reason: literary
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Old 08-15-2007
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suzy

Good luck, I am in my early 50's no major illnesses to date, but went back to work just to get insurance. I used a full 18months of COBRA, that at better than 1200 a month, and have found NOTHING for less than $2K that will actually cover anything and with a very large deductible.

Let us know what you find....this is surely going to be the biggest problem I will ever face as I get old...it is not a matter of premiums...NO ONE will willingly insure an active 50+ year old...

dave

Last edited by kd3pc; 08-15-2007 at 08:46 PM.
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Old 08-15-2007
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You don't need health insurance. Take the $1000 a month and invest it. If you truly are healthy, then your only real needs will be minor. If it's major, cash in the investments and pay it off. If it's catastrophic, make payments, (to the hospital and doctors, not the insurance companies) or file bankruptcy. But don't pay $1000-$2000 a month to the insurance companies.

Last edited by LeftyI36; 08-15-2007 at 10:47 PM.
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Old 08-15-2007
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I would look for a major medical plan with a high deductible and bank the rest.



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Old 08-16-2007
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Suzy, the SCCA discussions really have covered all the options. "Reasonable" no longer exists, forget about that. "Affordable" usually means "major medical only" and you'll have to deal out of pocket with anything except being hit by a truck. And even then, the annual and lifetime policy coverage limits are incredibly low.

US insurers may not cover you overseas, and overseas policies may require that you not be in the US. Again, lots discussed in the SSCA forums. You may have to cast an eye towards where you will be going, and whether you think the medical care there is good enough, or whether you also want medevac insurance back to the states. That's another catch: Many policies cover only the injured party, and many airlines requires someone to accompnay you. If you look for medevac, look for a policy that allows a partner to accompany you.
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Old 08-19-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SuzySailor View Post
Hey all~

I have done due diligence and searched both this site and SSCA, and found nothing truly helpful on this topic. I really need some help, and I know from doing lots of searching that I'm not alone in this dilemma. We're quitting jobs soon and moving onto the boat, planning to start cruising asap. The present obstacle, a serious one, is health insurance. We're in our early 50's (yikes! that sounds old!) and quite healthy, at least so we thought until we started looking for insurance. Long story short (you're welcome! )-- of the thousands of companies in existance, all of them would be happy to "insure" our healthy 19 yr-old son, and there might even be a few who are willing to receive a monthly donation of $500-$1000 from us, but we're not at all convinced that, if we need any help from them in return, they'll be there.

So here's the question, which sounds oh so much simpler than it is~~ can anyone recommend, from personal experience, a reasonably priced, dependable health insurance plan that works in both US and abroad?? I know that everyone is different, and that we might all pick different variations of an ideal plan, but give me somewhere to start-- give me a name. Thanks.
I can't directly answer your question but I can talk about an alternative; if you are cruising to Canada, Costa Rica, New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa I found medical care so inexpensive and good that insurance isn't the problem it is here. Even South Africa provided good care at a reasonable cost although it isn't as available to the masses; only those whose income is substantial but that is far different that what is substantial here.
Wishing you well.
Mary
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Old 08-19-2007
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If I were you I'd seriously consider moving to Vancouver, where you can sail year round and work for a few more years until you can get Canadian citizenship. Our health care plan covers you around the world, but you only get it if you pay taxes here.

I honest to God don't understand how 300 million people have been cowed into submitting to the wills of 150 odd insurance companies, or paying the insanely inflated charges associated with mediacl care in your country.
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Old 08-20-2007
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Sailormann-
If Suzy and her husband are not both college graduates (or higher) with jobs already contracted in Canada, they probably cannot qualify the 65 points needed to emigrate and become residents. Unless they divorce and marry other Canadian citizens. Or, declare themselves to be stateless refugees and sneak in that huge secret entrance.

Canada ain't so easy to get into.

Suze, if you think $1000 per month for a married couple is UNreasonable for a company that will provide globalcare--surprise! I'd call that CHEAP for a policy that was offering "major medical" alone, and astounding for a complete medical insurance package with realistic annual and lifetime coverage limits.

That's where insurance is at in the US today. Every alternative has some pretty strict limits, so check them out carefully. The old fashioned "covers anything anywhere" policies won't exist for less than the price of a luxury car per year.
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Old 08-20-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailormann View Post
If I were you I'd seriously consider moving to Vancouver, where you can sail year round and work for a few more years until you can get Canadian citizenship. Our health care plan covers you around the world, but you only get it if you pay taxes here.

I honest to God don't understand how 300 million people have been cowed into submitting to the wills of 150 odd insurance companies, or paying the insanely inflated charges associated with mediacl care in your country.
Your BC insurance covers you around the world?? It's not like that in Ontario.
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Old 08-20-2007
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OHIP covers you for emergency medical care and transport back to Canada (not perfect but better than nothing)

Quote:
For people travelling outside Canada, the ministry pays a set rate for emergency health services. Emergency health services are those given in connection with an acute, unexpected condition, illness, disease or injury that arises outside Canada and requires immediate treatment. Ambulance services are not covered. Ontario residents are encouraged to purchase supplementary insurance when traveling outside Canada as many emergency health services provided outside the country cost more than OHIP may pay.
http://www.health.gov.on.ca/english/...ravel.htmlmuch

Last edited by Sailormann; 08-20-2007 at 09:16 PM.
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