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Health Insurance

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Jlodes1159
3/6/2018 09:04 EST

I’m trying to decide on a health insurance plan. I saw this advertisement for Cigna. Can anyone give me advice please?

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mgammo
3/6/2018 10:06 EST

We just got switched to Cigna up here in the states. My husband hates it compared to Blue Cross, it is not as good.

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Jlodes1159
3/6/2018 10:22 EST

I had Cigna through work in the USA and liked it. But I wonder what their expat insurance is like.

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CayeCaulker4Me
3/6/2018 10:57 EST

Our research indicated that general health care, as well as minor emergency and "normal" surgical procedures, in Belize is rather inexpensive, compared to US costs and when weighed against the cost of monthly International Health Insurance premiums. We also learned that most clinics/hospitals (public & private) do not accept International Health Insurance, so you end up paying for the services and then have to go through the process of submitting bills, etc. for reimbursement.

We decided to not take out International Health Insurance, keep our Medicare (her) and Medicaid (me) insurance active in the US and go home for regular check-ups and non-emergency health issues.

We did however decide to take out Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance that will transport either one of us back to anywhere/hospital in the US if we require moderate - major medical attention, that is not available at the level of US care, in a foreign country. We went with MedJet and a year's coverage cost us just $724, for the top of the line program (takes us whatever city/hospital we choose to go in the US).

Our research indicated that if we do have a minor medical emergency, we would go to a private hospital on the mainland for service/care. We heard numerous firsthand accounts by folks who needed this type of care, without insurance, and the costs they paid were very reasonable, when compared to the high cost of International Insurance Premiums. One account we heard of was a gentleman that required an emergency appendectomy. He spent 2 days in a private hospital in Belize City, all the Dr's & nurses were American trained and he had a private room. His final bill for room, board, surgery and nursing care for 2 days came to $1,200. Compared to the monthly premium we were quoted for International Health Insurance, we felt it was worth it to roll the dice and pay for any unexpected health care we may require.

On a final note, let me say this. Fortunately, at present time, we are both in fairly good physical health and neither of us have any chronic health concerns/conditions that require constant care or regular Dr's visits. With all the research we did (over 2 years), we realized living on Caye Caulker is not really the best option if one does have any sort of chronic health condition. We feel blessed to be healthy enough to have been able to move here and enjoy this incredible island life!

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bobbyveee
3/6/2018 13:46 EST

We fully agree with CC4Me says, we did exactly the same, except we used our divers medical insurance to medivac us back to USA, we paid less than $300 to do this, This we used up until we left AC in 2015. its the simplest and easiest route to take and effective.

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Jlodes1159
3/6/2018 14:45 EST

That was very informative. Thank you so much for your reply. I think that’s what I will do too. Get my Medicare in the USA and go there for anything major.

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AXA PPP International Health Insurance for Expats

Expat health insurance to suit your needs. Get affordable healthcare cover that gives you more. AXA - Global Healthcare has supported members globally for over 50 years; including professionals and their families, expatriates worldwide, workers in remote regions, and many others embracing life abroad.

Learn More Get a Quote

Jlodes1159
3/6/2018 14:45 EST

That was very informative. Thank you so much for your reply. I think that’s what I will do too. Get my Medicare in the USA and go there for anything major.

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terrific
3/6/2018 19:34 EST

That is the plan for when we are full time in Belize, for day to day problems the local doctors and Hospitals do work out OK just not as smart and techno savvy as in the US/first world countries, so it is emergency ecvacuation insurance that is needed.

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5allan1
3/7/2018 08:41 EST

I agree with terrific about local care for basic medical/surgical. However accidents happen and 911- ER- trauma care services are weak to non existent. I have seen my share of horror stories not reported on expat sites. It seems to make sense to relocate to a country ( Mexico or Costa Rica) where such services are readily available for such care and for chronic conditions or severe acute ones. Living in Corozal however offsets this a bit.

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CayeCaulker4Me
3/7/2018 12:35 EST

LOL, LMAO, ROFL......it's amazing what a monthly check from the Mexican Tourism Board will buy!

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toddwinston
3/7/2018 15:34 EST

..if you go to Mexico better get kidnapping insurance

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toddwinston
3/7/2018 15:34 EST

..if you go to Mexico better get kidnapping insurance

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terrific
3/7/2018 16:22 EST

Allan not everyone wants to live in Corozal, Not everyone is totally paranoid about not being able to get to US style big box stores. so for the one or two people in that (not Corozal) group the evac insurance works quite well. Not even every part of the US can guarantee fast emergency transfer after a big accident, Some folks are willing to accept that living where they want and are happy may not be 100% risk free. Show me a place that is. Mexico and Costa Rica have their own sets of values and problems. This is the BELIZE forum, the question was about insurance IN Belize not other countries. Note I have no commercial interest in persuading anyone to come to Belize over other options they may be considering. Yay be back in my place in less than 3 weeks and counting down, I will have been 8 weeks out of Belize seems longer. I believe April is the best time of the year in Belize.

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5allan1
3/8/2018 07:27 EST

^ That is partly true, but Belize as a whole is many degrees behind the curve when it comes to emergency- trauma help in the case of an accident or catastrophic illness (like a stroke or heart attack.) I had a case ( expat) who suffered an major stroke. She lived out in the sticks close to OW and the closest hospital is Northern Regional. She had to be airlifted to Florida, where she regained partial function, but if there were trained paramedics and a functioning ambulance and a neurologist available, a dose of clot buster might have come in handy if treated sooner. However as you say its a risk but one wannabees need to be cognizant of.
Also there is now a category in the DSM for Home Depot- Sams Aversion Disorder ( HDSAD). Treatment is available
;)
.

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