Many travelers assume their Medicare plan provides coverage abroad, however, travel insurance comparison site Squaremouth explains some common coverage misconceptions.
Misconception #1: Medicare provides medical coverage outside of the United States
For the most part, Medicare patients are not covered abroad. However, there are a few very specific situations when a patient may be covered under their Medicare policy:
A Medicare recipient on a direct route through Canada to Alaska when a medical emergency happens could have their injury or illness covered under Medicare if the closest hospital is in Canada.
A traveler has a medical emergency in the U.S. and the foreign hospital is closer than the nearest U.S. hospital.
Misconception #2: I am covered under Medicare on a cruise ship
Typically, Medicare coverage is not available on a cruise ship unless the ship is at a U.S. port when a traveler receives medical services.
Many Medicare recipients purchase supplemental insurance when traveling abroad. Squaremouth recommends checking to see if this provides foreign travel coverage. If it doesn't, it's time to consider travel insurance.
Travelers should look for policies that include Emergency Medical and Medical Evacuation coverage.
Squaremouth recommends purchasing a policy with at least $50,000 for Emergency Medical and $100,000 for Medical Evacuation. Higher amounts are recommended for older travelers and those taking cruises or traveling to remote locations.
Find out more at www.squaremouth.com.