What are Eligible medical expenses?

Photo By: Hui Quan Yang

Eligible medical expenses

The medical services covered for the treatment of an accidental injury or unforeseen illness during your trip (found in the summary of benefits section). Insurers pay for emergency expenses according to the standard costs of other medical facilities in the same geographic area.

Examples: Hospital accommodation, physicians’ bills, nursing care, diagnostic tests, ground or air transportation, prescription drugs, emergency dental care, medical equipment, evacuation, repatriation of remains, and allowances for bedside companions.


Some procedures like MRIs, CT scans, surgeries, and biopsies need to be pre-authorized by the plan administrator. Also, if you need to be hospitalized, the attending doctor in consultation with the plan administrator can determine when your condition is no longer an emergency and further care will not be covered by your plan. It’s no longer an emergency if you are able to continue your trip or return home unassisted.


Can I get emergency care by a psychologist, psychiatrist, physiotherapist, chiropractor, chiropodist, podiatrist or osteopath?

Learn more in IAMAT’s Guide to Travel Health Insurance
  • Did you know?

    You are not covered if you need medical care or hospitalization as a result of drinking alcohol.

    The majority of travel health insurance plans exclude injuries resulting from alcohol consumption. Some plans do cover injuries related to alcohol use but you cannot exceed the maximum allowable blood alcohol levels.

  • Did you know?

    Your travel health insurance plan is a legal contract. When you purchase a policy, you have to adhere to the terms set out within that specific policy for the insurer to fulfill their obligation to provide coverage.

    Remember that insurance only covers you for unforeseen and unexpected events – an unstable pre-existing condition or participating in activities that can increase your risk for personal harm or injury put your coverage at risk.

  • Did you know?

    Medical questionnaires are required to be completed at the time of purchase if you are over a certain age (typically over 60) or have a pre-existing condition. These forms can be complex and include medical jargon. If you need help, ask the insurance provider for clarification. Many insurers also want your doctor to sign off on the medical questionnaire.

    If you file a claim, insurers will look closely at the answers on your medical questionnaire to see if they match your medical file before accepting your claim.

  • Did you know?

    Mental health coverage is excluded from most standard travel health plans.

    If you have a first time mental health event or need care for a pre-existing psychiatric condition, you will have to pay out-of-pocket for medical services and prescription medication you need abroad.

  • Did you know?

    If your existing insurance benefits plan or credit card (primary coverage) doesn’t fully or adequately cover you for your health condition, you will need to get supplemental or secondary coverage (also known as excess insurance).

    This additional plan pays for medical expenses after your existing or primary coverage has reached the payout limits. The secondary insurer pays the balance of your medical costs.

Photo By: Sharif Hossain Sourav