Healthcare Insurance

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Emergency Evacuation & Repatriation Service

Nine people were injured after a tour boat crashed into London's Tower Bridge a few years ago. On the same day, New York subway riders were trapped in a smoke-filled train. A fire in a bus terminal and shopping complex in South Korea caused death and injuries. All these disasters occurred at popular travel destinations, which shows that there is always a certain amount of risk involved in travelling abroad and you never know when you may require emergency assistance due to an unexpected incident.

An unfortunate case concerns Mr and Mrs Hui, who went to the Philippines on a diving holiday. After diving, Mr Hui rose to the surface and started to feel sick. Eventually he became so ill that he died in the Philippines. Mr and Mrs Hui did not have any travel insurance but Mrs Hui remembered that Mr Hui’s medical insurance did provide emergency assistance service, so she phoned her insurance agent but discovered that, while her husband’s medical insurance did provide an emergency assistance hotline, it did not cover evacuation and repatriation. Mrs Hui ended up having to pay for this herself.

We understand that some people do not buy travel insurance for their overseas trips as they do not care about the trivial coverage such as “Travel Delay and Trip Cancellation”. Their major concerns, such as personal accident and medical cover are already covered by their personal insurance and medical insurance which provide worldwide cover.

However, most people may not be aware of their own insurance coverage. Some emergency assistance services under medical insurance only provide a 24-hour emergency assistance hotline service but not the evacuation or repatriation service. It is vital to have the evacuation or repatriation protection because, in the event of urgent medical needs, the emergency evacuation service could transfer the insured person to the nearest centre of medical excellence if the treatment the beneficiary needs is not available locally. Also, if the insured person unfortunately passes away while abroad, the repatriation of remains benefit will cover the costs associated with returning the insured body to the home country. It could safeguard your family’s financial stability even if the worst happens.

It is true that not all kinds of assistance services would provide the emergency evacuation and repatriation service. As evacuation and repatriation services involve high costs, for some basic plans, this service might be excluded from the policy. Therefore, customers should examine the details of their insurance policy and ensure it provides sufficient protection. If you require all-round protection for your trip, we highly recommend that you take out travel insurance after confirming your itinerary as travel insurance is specifically designed to provide protection for overseas trips.

At MSIG, we offer a wide range of products that fully cater to our clients’ needs. Customers can choose the right product for themselves, based on their needs. For example, in the tragic case of Mr Hui, if he had purchased our MediSure Plus – super plan or executive plan – Mrs Hui would not have been left in such a predicament.

Learn more about our insurance plans:
CriticalCare 1.0
MediSure Plus

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