I became terminally ill 4 years ago with kidney cancer, and was given
six months to live. Having said that, the progress of my ilness is
unusually slow and I am, in practical terms, very fit with little in
the way of symptoms. I've never had a serious comprimising health
incident in that time.
Much as I'd like to, I can't visit USA. My insurance would cost ten
times the price of the holiday, maybe 5000 or more.
I booked myself a two day break in Marrakech for 100 thinking "It is
not too far away. I'll do it without any insurance." The holiday is a
bargain, but not if I add on an additional 500 insurance.
But I've now realised that this creates a potential problem for other
people. It is statistically unlikely that I'd get sick for the first
time ever during those two days, but what if i do get seriously ill
during the break, for example if I encountered breathing difficulties
on the outward flight and they had to land the plane and somehow get
me back to the UK. Or what if I die over there and it is necessary to
get the body back? It wouldn't be me who deals with the problem. It'd
be my family who arent particularly aware of the insurance issues.
The chances of these disastrous things happening are minimal, but if
something did, someone in my family would have to finance it and
organise it, and subsequently recover the money from me or my estate.
It could be thousands of pounds.
Any thoughts? It is unfair of me to put such a responsibility on my
family. Should I not go? Should I set up a bank account that they can
access in case of emergency. Does anyone have any knowledge or
experience of emergency return from somewhere like Marrakech? Likely
It depends on many things, including what relatives you have and whether
you have anything to leave to them. You could quite easily wipe out 250,000
on medical treatment and repatriation, so the bigger your estate the more
you or they have to lose. There are other risks than your illness to not
having insurance. What happens if you get hit by a hit and run driver-
requiring a huge amount of medical attention on site rather than being able
to come home?
One thought though if you are determined to go abroad. Stick to the EU and
get an EH1C.
That entitles you to medical treatment on the same basis as a local person
(not often free, but with some or most costs met) throughout the EU.
I know some people go to European countries without insurance relying only
on the EH1C. I never have. We always take insurance, particularly for things
it would not cover, such as repatriation, but it would underwrite a lot of
the medical costs if you choose where you go carefully.
It's your own decision though- you need to research it to see what it offers
and work out whether it is a chance you are willing to take.