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What Travelers Need to Know About Medical Repatriations



April 13, 2020

The Challenges Patients and Providers May Face During Medical Repatriations 

If you or a loved one is considering medical repatriation, you are likely to have some questions about the process. If you’ve experienced a traumatic injury or illness while traveling, you may need to be transferred to a medical facility capable of providing appropriate medical care, or you may just want to get back to your home country to obtain proper treatment. Here’s what you need to know:

What’s Included With the Medical Repatriation

Depending on a patient’s needs, medical repatriation could include the services of a flight nurse. These professionals monitor the patient throughout the entire flight to ensure their wellbeing from the treating hospital to the receiving facility. These types of flights can also include ventilators, IVs, and the ability to accommodate a stretcher.

Medical Repatriation from Foreign Hospitals

There are times when a foreign hospital is not adequately equipped to address your condition, or your travel insurance won’t cover complicated services abroad. In these cases, you will need to be repatriated via air ambulance back to your home country.

Language barriers can often complicate the repatriation process. Coordinating the entire effort might require a translator to work directly with the treating hospital, including staff and doctors, to accurately complete the process. Service providers typically work directly with translators to ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible, certify that the patient is receiving the correct level of treatment and care from where they originated, to where they land.

Medical Repatriating to a Specific Destination  

The destination facility is selected based upon many criteria. Repatriation providers will work with you to determine the best possible facility to receive the patient. Patient and family preference is considered, but your travel insurance coverage could dictate the receiving location, or not offer repatriation services at all. Travel insurance may only cover repatriation to the closest healthcare facility capable of providing appropriate care or require you to foot the bill yourself.

Travel Insurance Coverage for Medical Repatriation

Your plan will determine if the repatriation is covered. Certain policies do not include these services, and you or your family might have to pay for the services required. Every plan is different, and it is vital to understand the coverage you are purchasing before you leave your home country.

Your condition, where you are located, and the services you need will play an important role in whether repatriation will be covered by travel insurance.

About the CAP Travel Assistance Plan

CAP is an international travel assistance plan with travel medicaltravel securitytravel concierge and travel tracking benefits that include repatriation, relocation and evacuation services for mishaps like pandemic outbreaks, natural disasters, criminal violence and so much more.

All CAP Plans come with a free travel assistance app that offers GPS-enhanced tracking, emergency response, a list of vetted medical and dental facilities, and communication capabilities for compatible Android and iPhone devices.

Visit the website for a free quote or to learn more about what a CAP Plan can do for you.