William Russell on the alarming costs of overseas healthcare

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Emphasizing the importance of purchasing international private medical insurance (IPMI) coverage when planning to work or live abroad, William Russell published a set of data that shed light on the astronomical costs of treatments. abroad for expatriates during the period 2019 to 2020 (a subject that Hospitals and healthcare recently covered in a special article).

At least one international health insurance claim made during the period totaled more than US $ 390,000, notes William Russell. And the firm says the most expensive claim made for a medical evacuation in 2019-20 was $ 31,125.02.

Global supplier IPMI also notes that infant immunization costs for expatriates living abroad can be as high as £ 800 (in Hong Kong and UK) and maternity treatments for expatriates abroad can reach up to £ 40. £ 000 (in Hong Kong).

Beware of the growing number of chronic diseases

As any healthcare professional will tell you, cancer is increasingly one of the most diagnosed chronic diseases, it is the second leading cause of death worldwide (and breast cancer has recently become the form of most commonly diagnosed cancer), and with the global pandemic causing delayed patient referrals and an increasingly aging population causing an increase in the prevalence of chronic diseases such as cancer, healthcare appears to be a expensive business.

Indeed, William Russell points out that the highest claims paid for overseas medical treatments during the period 2019-2020 were for cancer treatments, with 25 claims valued over $ 100,000, including five over $ 300,000 (by the way, all of those claims were in the Asia-Pacific region, with the four most expensive of those five claims in Hong Kong – we see a bit of shaping up here).

Diabetes, another chronic disease associated with aging and poor nutrition, also carries the highest treatment costs; William Russell cites the highest claim for diabetes for the period at $ 6,806.91 (in Thailand). What’s more, a poor diet and unhealthy lifestyle can also lead to heart disease, which according to the World Health Organization is the leading cause of death worldwide.

The cost of health care is increasing year by year

“These numbers cover the period 2019-2020,” commented Inez Cooper, CEO and co-founder of William Russell, “but at a time when the cost of global healthcare is increasing year by year, it’s unclear what they can look like. as in 2020-21. This only underscores how vital it is for families already living or considering moving abroad to urgently seek international health insurance from a trusted provider. Families may also consider adding medical evacuation insurance, which will cover them if they need to travel to another country for medical treatment. “

Control costs in assistance operations

Hopefully this will be enough of a warning to convince mobile individuals around the world to purchase appropriate IPMI coverage, but what about the flip side? If the price of healthcare increases, what can international insurers and assistance providers do to control the costs of their operations?

As many will tell you, it will all come down to preventative health measures – the use of remote patient monitoring technology that helps detect health issues early in policyholders, and the use of health care offers. Innovative assistance that encourages policyholders to maintain a healthy lifestyle will all help to be the key to keeping people out of emergencies.


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