What is a Pre-Existing Condition? Does It Affect My Travel Insurance Premium?
What Is a Pre-existing Condition?
Pre-existing conditions are ailments you had before your insurance policy became effective. This can be something you've lived with for a long time, or it could be a new diagnosis. Examples of common pre-existing conditions are diabetes, heart disease, cancer, asthma and pregnancy.
Some insurance policies exclude coverage for any and all pre-existing conditions, while others may only provide limited coverage. If a pre-existing condition isn't managed properly, treatment for it might not be covered under some policies. Make sure you understand the terms of your policy before buying it.
How Do Travel Insurer Define a Pre-existing Condition?
A pre-existing condition is defined as any medical condition that existed with reasonable medical certainty usually at least 180 days prior to the start date of coverage. However, it is important to read your plan document carefully for a full explanation of all terms and conditions.
If a tourist becomes ill, is diagnosed with something new, or changes their prescriptions in any way during the travel period, that illness will be considered pre-existing.
Are You Still Able To Buy Travel Insurance With a Pre-existing Condition?
Although you may still be able to buy travel insurance if you have a pre-existing condition, understand that your premium will probably cost more, and the coverage is likely to be not as extensive as someone who does not have any health concerns.
When applying for travel insurance, you will be asked to disclose any pre-existing conditions that you have. Being honest when answering this question is crucial, as if you are not, your claims could be denied.
Research various travel insurance policies and make sure to compare them before you purchase if you have a pre-existing condition. By doing this, you guarantee that not only will you get the coverage needed, but also at an affordable price.
Pre-Existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver
With most travel insurance policies, any medical conditions you had before getting the policy are not covered. But some policies will make an exception.
If you want a pre-existing medical condition exclusion waiver, generally speaking, you can only get one within 14 to 21 days of making an initial deposit for your trip. You have to insure the full nonrefundable costs of the trip as well. The best thing to do is buy travel insurance immediately after booking your trip--just make sure that your policy includes the exclusion waiver.
The Importance of a Waiver
Failure to get a waiver means your travel insurer won't foot the bill for any medial bills or coverage claims related to your recent medical history, such as high blood pressure or asthma. So if you have a heart attack while on vacation and didn't obtain a waiver, emergency care costs and evacuation fees must all be covered by you.
The best way to avoid issues is to understand the pre-existing condition waiver exclusion and purchase your policy as soon after booking your trip as possible.
Pre-Existing Conditions Not Eligible for a Waiver
A waiver is ideal, but note that not all medical conditions will be covered by travel insurance, such as:
- Illness or injury related to alcohol or drug abuse
- Complication-free pregnancy or childbirth
It is important that you check with your provider on their terms and conditions.
How Does a Pre-existing Condition Affect Your Travel Insurance Premium?
If you have any medical conditions prior to buying a policy, your premium may be higher. That's because people who have pre-existing conditions are more likely to claim their travel insurance.
If you have a waiver, your insurance company will still cover you even if you have to cancel your trip due to a pre-existing medical condition.
Always scan through your travel insurance policy before your trip to see what is included in the coverage. This way, you will not be taken aback by any extra charges on pre-existing conditions. In addition, be informed of the limit regarding medical evacuation and travel medical insurance to steer clear of unwanted surprises.