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Six reasons why international health insurance could give you peace of mind – now and in the future

In times of crisis, certain truths become ever more apparent. The rapid spread of the coronavirus across the world is a stark example of how quickly things can change and the value of being prepared for the unexpected.

Six reasons why international health insurance could give you peace of mind – now and in the future
Photo by Timur Romanov on Unsplash

Nobody can separate themselves from the ups and downs of life. But individuals and families face important decisions about how best to secure some peace of mind. Such choices may loom even larger for expats, as international insurance broker ASN understands.

Here are six reasons why international health insurance could give you greater peace of mind today and in the years to come:

1.     Feeling prepared

All insurance is about protecting against risks. Perceptions of risk change over time and sometimes the unexpected hits you without warning. ASN works with a wide range of insurance partners, many of whom offer coverage for pandemics, including the current coronavirus outbreak.

Find out more about ASN and its international network of insurance providers

Anyone diagnosed with coronavirus who has such a policy will be covered under the normal terms and conditions of their plan. Depending on your level of cover, this could include a full refund for in-patient hospital charges while being treated for COVID-19 or a significant hospital cash benefit.

2.    Personalised plans

Nobody looks forward to a hospital stay. But a bespoke insurance policy could make it easier by enabling you to choose which hospital you are treated in – and whether you will have a private room.

Most people infected with coronavirus simply need to self-isolate at home. But even the fit and healthy face a small risk of complications that require hospital treatment. Many of ASN’s partners work directly with hospitals on a case-by-case basis, building relationships and helping to curb medical inflation.

Photo: Adobe Stock 

3.    Coverage beyond borders

The current crisis has led to unprecedented closures of international borders. Huge numbers of people have either been left stranded or facing difficult choices about whether to cancel travel plans.

Want quality health insurance coverage wherever you are? Find out more

Specialist international health insurance offers you more when you are abroad, whether as an emigrant or a frequent traveller. ASN can select insurance offering global coverage and access to a worldwide network of leading doctors and hospitals to choose from. You can also opt for a policy that offers medical evacuation and repatriation where necessary.

4.    Clear round-the-clock communication

Amid uncertainty and anxiety, clear communication from a trusted source that remains readily available can seem invaluable. Some insurance providers now offer member services 24/7 through contact options such as WhatsApp, phone hotlines and live chat. ASN support officers also remain available by email and phone during the pandemic. The company reminds everyone to follow safe practices outlined by the World Health Organization and to continue social distancing.

5.    Putting family first

Illness can be hugely disruptive to family life. If you suspect you have coronavirus, your first concern might be about the potential implications and impact for your family members. ASN has strong partnerships with providers that offer a wide choice of individual or family-based policies.

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

One has already extended the claim submission period from six to nine months for members with COVID-19, so they can focus on recovering fully with support from their family. It has also pledged faster turnaround times for pre-authorisations of treatment and claims relating to COVID-19.

6.    Facing the future

Healthcare in the 21st century is changing. From ageing populations to the potential of highly personalised ‘precision medicine’, the sector is being reshaped by a range of powerful factors.

Choosing the right insurance policy for you requires careful consideration of both the present and the future. When you establish health insurance with ASN, you are guaranteed lifetime renewability regardless of age or health conditions. True peace of mind depends on taking care of tomorrow as well as today.

Visit ASN's website now for more information on global health insurance solutions.

Conditions may apply.

This article was produced by The Local Creative Studio and sponsored by Advisory Services Network.

 

 

 

For members

HEALTH

How do I get a European Health Insurance Card in Austria?

An European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) provides EU residents with access to public healthcare across the bloc. Here’s what you need to know about getting an EHIC in Austria.

How do I get a European Health Insurance Card in Austria?

A big advantage of living in Europe is the ability to travel to so many different countries.

But sometimes accidents or illness can happen while on holiday or a work trip, which can mean an unplanned visit to a doctor.

READ ALSO: Austria recommends 4th Covid vaccine dose for everyone over 12

Thankfully, the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) provides some protection against expensive medical bills in the form of reciprocal healthcare. 

Here’s what you need to know about the EHIC and how to get the card in Austria.

What is an EHIC?

An EHIC is a form of medical insurance cover and replaces the international health insurance voucher (form E111). It is issued free of charge and allows holders to access state-provided medical care while temporarily in another EU country. 

It works on a reciprocal basis through a country’s social security system and care is provided at the same cost as those insured in the country (which means it can be free, in some cases).

This means that if you have an e-card and are insured with one of the public health insurances in Austria, such as ÖGK, for example, you are entitled to the EHIC and to access public health services (to a certain extent) in other countries.

FOR MEMBERS: What is Austria’s e-card and what do you need to know about it?

The EHIC is valid in all 27 EU countries, as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, Macedonia, Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the UK.

However, the EHIC is not an alternative to comprehensive travel insurance as it doesn’t cover any private healthcare costs, a flight home or lost/stolen property.

Why do I need an EHIC in Austria?

The main advantage of having an EHIC is if you need medical treatment while briefly travelling in another country.

While the coverage is limited to state-provided healthcare, it does mean you will be treated by a doctor and not liable to pay non-resident medical fees.

READ NEXT: How Austria is making it easier for non-EU workers to get residence permits

Austria’s e-card – the national insurance card – is needed for almost all medical procedures. On the back, it contains the EHIC Ecard image: Wikicommons

How do I get an EHIC?

EHICs are issued by the national health country provider of the country where you live. This could be, for example, the ÖGK or SVA, depending on which provider you use in Austria.

In Austria, every e-card (the health insurance card that is used to visit a doctor) already contains an EHIC on the reverse of the card, so there is no need to apply for it separately. 

However, if the data fields on the EHIC on the back of your e-card contains stars (***) instead of personal information such as name and date of birth, further documentation is required to access healthcare in another EU country.

In this case, you need to contact your social security provider in Austria to receive a replacement card before you travel.

The EHIC is only valid on the condition that you are insured or co-insured in Austria.

Useful words 

Social insurance – Sozialversicherung

Travel insurance – Reiseversicherung

Healthcare – Gesundheitspflege

Useful links

European Commission

Austrian social insurance

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