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International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 07:08 PM   #1
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International Health Insurance

A year ago I left my job that had a good health care plan. I decided to try and enter a semi-retirement phase at the age of 59, but I'm still working full-time in Singapore, and yes, I'm American As worried about health care coverage as anyone, I picked up insurance called "International Health Insurance" based out of Denmark, which is a company owned by BUPA (from Britain). It's actually very good coverage, and costs me $2,500 per year. It covers me for 1.8 million per year and a $1400 deductible. It's international, so if I get hospitalized in any county, including the US, I'm covered. I'm guaranteed for life, or at least until Medicare kicks in at 65.

I'm always curious why US retirees always seem to restrict themselves to insurance companies based in the US. I really believe it's less expensive if you consider European providers. Just a thought.

Regards,
Rob
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 07:28 PM   #2
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Re: International Health Insurance

Another option is host country insurance if you have say a US policy that doesn't cover you overseas. here in the Philippines you can get in-country only Blue Cross for around $100 a year ... cheap enough to carry as extra coverage.

The problem with the policies I see from BUPA is, they die at 65 ... and what will you do then?

The major detriment to US citizens retiring overseas is the money you have invested all these years in Medicare is lost ... medicare pays nothing for retirees outside the US ... so that's a substantial negative factor.

In my case I am relying on my retired military TRICARE coverage ... they are smart enough to welcome overseas retirees since the cost is so much cheaper for them. As it is though when I am 65 I will have to buy medicare part B to continue TRICARE ... $80 a month now and who knows how much later .. and I will never collect a single thin dime in Medicare benefits.

This has been brought up to Congress a number of times, but for some reason the simple economics don't seem to sink in.
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 08:21 PM   #3
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Re: International Health Insurance

BUPA guarantees health coverage for life. I have that in writing. I must admit that IHI (International Health Insurance), which is owned by BUPA, is a little better for me for a couple reasons.

At any rate, I am covered for my life, if I elect not to use my Medicare alll the time. My premiums go up a little every year, but I can handle that.

Regards,
Rob
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 08:37 PM   #4
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Re: International Health Insurance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob
I'm always curious why US retirees always seem to restrict themselves to insurance companies based in the US. I really believe it's less expensive if you consider European providers. Just a thought.
It looks like it doesn't cover those who reside in the USA:

We understand that many people don't need medical insurance for the USA. To make sure you only pay for what you need, we give you the choice of whether to include this country in your cover. Please be aware that we cannot offer BUPA International Lifeline to people usually resident in the USA.
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 08:52 PM   #5
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Re: International Health Insurance

That is the big reason I decided to go with International Health Insurance. IHI is owned by BUPA, but it does cover you in the US.

Regards,
Rob
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 09:17 PM   #6
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Re: International Health Insurance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob
That is the big reason I decided to go with International Health Insurance. IHI is owned by BUPA, but it does cover you in the US.

Regards,
Rob
Ah, I see. I was on the wrong web site. I went to the IHI website, put in that I am a USA resident and got the following response:

Please contact us with further information

You have selected that you have a permanent address in USA or Canada.

Please contact us with further information on residence and citizenship as IHI only issues policies in USA and Canada under special circumstances.



So did you tell them your permanent residence is in Singapore, or did you qualify for the special circumstances?

Thanks!
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 09:27 PM   #7
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Re: International Health Insurance

to Simple Girl-
My Permanent Residence is in Singapore. Therefore, I'm covered in the States and also in Canada. If I move back to the States, they tell me I will still be covered.

Regards,
Rob
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 09:38 PM   #8
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Re: International Health Insurance

Thanks for the details. So it looks like you have to establish residency in another country before being able to qualify. I will keep this info in my back pocket should we end up moving to another country at some point in the future (something we have considered but aren't so sure we want to do).
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Re: International Health Insurance
Old 03-09-2007, 10:38 PM   #9
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Re: International Health Insurance

I don't think any US resident can get a better deal than a US policy for coverage within the US ... especially after 65 when almost all policies just become supplements to Medicare. the gist of the thread was having coverage when living overseas when Medicare won't do. If Rob is confident he's covered great for him, I have several UK citizen expat friends here who were surprised when they were dropped by BUPA so I am not as confident as he is ... hope he's right and I'm not ... anyway, I invested 40 years in earning the coverage I have so I'm happy ... except for the government essentially stealing the money I contributed to Medicare ... say la vie.

By the way, many US policies _do_ cover expats at little or no additonal cost overseas ... it's the over 65 years that pose the problem.
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