How to Obtain International Health Insurance with   Pre-existing Conditions   

Just like domestic health insurance, international health insurance requires you to also disclose your pre-existing conditions. Although these conditions may not prevent you from obtaining insurance, they will affect which plans you are eligible for. If any of the following applies to you, you may need to check for pre-existing condition clauses or exclusions, or seek special international health insurance that covers pre-existing conditions:
  • Pregnancy
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol 
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Cancer
  • Asthma

Note that if you have any other long-term health conditions or chronic health conditions, those may qualify as pre-existing conditions.

How to Obtain International Health Insurance with Pre-existing Conditions

Pre-existing Conditions and Exclusions

Exclusions are quite standard in insurance policies. Careful attention should be paid to the exclusion list in order to ensure that expats do not pay for coverage of a medical condition they don’t have (or for any medical service they do not need).

When filling out the insurance application, be sure to include all pre-existing conditions. Any claim related to an undeclared pre-existing condition can be rejected, even abroad. This can lead to expensive out-of-pocket medical bills. It is always better to declare pre-existing conditions when obtaining a policy than to leave it off and hope for the best. Although most plans do not cover pre-existing conditions, pre-existing condition exclusions can be removed if you have been treatment free for 18-24 months.

Typically, short-term travel medical plans will likely have more exclusions than long-term plans. Long-term plans may also offer expiration dates on their exclusions. For example, some plans only offer maternity care after 12 months of continuous coverage. Other plans may offer maternity care after a shorter waiting period, while some plans exclude maternity care completely.

All international health insurance plans will have a list of exclusions for risks they cannot specifically insure. These generally include acts of war and terrorism (even in countries where war has not been declared), and nuclear explosions. Recreational activities (such as skydiving and scuba diving) are often not covered by insurance. If individuals are traveling to areas where high-risk exclusions may apply, they may obtain war and terrorism, and medical evacuation extensions to their policies. Typically, immunizations, vaccinations, and inoculations are not covered.

Sometimes, there are age limitations on obtaining an international health insurance policy as they may not offer coverage for people over a certain age. So, you may need to do considerable research to fit the criteria for the policy that you need. 

Can I Obtain International Health Insurance that Covers Pre-existing conditions?

If you have pre-existing conditions, you will likely incur one or more of the following when trying to obtain international health insurance:

  • Higher rates for international insurance premiums
  • The need for additional forms or medical screenings before you are approved for a plan

If you have pre-existing conditions, you are still eligible for expatriate health insurance. You simply need to be aware that your pre-existing condition may not be covered. Additionally, pre-existing condition exclusions can be removed if you have been treatment free for 18-24 months. Contact Clements today for more information, and health insurance specialists will help you find a plan that works for you and your family.

Learn More about International Health Insurance

Call us today at +1.202.872.0060 or 800.872.0067 or e-mail request@clements.com to discuss your insurance needs.