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Expat Exchange - Do I need Health Insurance When Moving to Nigeria?
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Lagos, Nigeria


Do I need Health Insurance When Moving to Nigeria?

By Betsy Burlingame

AGS Worldwide Movers
AGS Worldwide Movers

Summary: Is health insurance a requirement when you are moving to Nigeria? This article explores health insurance requirements for newcomers to Nigeria.

Moving to Nigeria as an expat or digital nomad comes with a myriad of considerations, one of the most critical being health insurance. While Nigeria does not have a universal health care system that automatically covers expats, it is essential to ensure that you have adequate health insurance coverage upon arrival. The Nigerian healthcare system consists of both public and private facilities, with the latter generally offering a higher standard of care. It is not mandatory for visitors or those seeking residency to have health insurance, but it is highly recommended due to the potential high costs of medical treatment and the varying quality of healthcare services. There are no specific minimum coverage amounts or length of coverage required by the government for residency purposes. However, having a comprehensive health insurance plan can provide peace of mind and financial protection against unforeseen medical expenses.

Does Expat Health Insurance Meet the Requirements?

Since Nigeria does not impose specific health insurance requirements for expats seeking residency, most international health insurance plans designed for expats should be sufficient for your stay in the country. It is crucial to ensure that your chosen plan covers medical treatment in Nigeria and includes provisions for medical evacuation, should it be necessary. Additionally, it is advisable to check for any exclusions that might affect your coverage, such as pre-existing conditions, and to confirm that your policy is renewable and can cover you for the entire duration of your stay.

Which local health insurers offer this type of insurance?

In Nigeria, there are several reputable local health insurance providers that offer plans catering to expats and digital nomads. These insurers typically provide a range of plans, from basic coverage to more comprehensive options. Some of the well-known local insurance companies include AXA Mansard, Leadway Assurance, and Hygeia HMO. These companies offer various health plans that can be tailored to individual needs, including outpatient care, inpatient care, maternity coverage, and emergency services. It is advisable to compare plans and read the fine print to understand the extent of coverage, limitations, and the network of hospitals and clinics available under each plan.

Advice from Expats in Nigeria about Health Insurance

Experienced expats in Nigeria often stress the importance of obtaining a robust health insurance plan before relocating. They advise newcomers to look for policies that offer a wide coverage network, including access to reputable private hospitals and clinics. It is also recommended to ensure that your plan covers medical evacuation, as this can be critically important in emergency situations. Expats suggest that you should consider the geographical area of coverage, ensuring it aligns with your travel or living plans within Nigeria and neighboring countries if applicable. Lastly, it is wise to look for plans with straightforward claims processes and reliable customer support, as navigating the healthcare system in a new country can be challenging. By taking these factors into account, you can select a health insurance plan that provides comprehensive coverage and peace of mind during your stay in Nigeria.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


AGS Worldwide Movers
AGS Worldwide Movers

AGS Worldwide Movers
AGS Worldwide Movers

Lagos, Nigeria

SJB Global
SJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
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SJB GlobalSJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
Learn More

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