Accidents Abroad- What Can You Do To Get the Best Treatment?


Having an accident abroad can be a traumatic experience for you and your family, but there are precautions that you can take to ensure that you get the best protection and treatment available to you.

Over 45 million residents in the UK jet off overseas each year. With people taking longer holidays more frequently, prioritising healthcare for you and your loved ones if you have an accident abroad is becoming increasingly important.

The Cost of Accidents Abroad

If you are a UK resident and travelling to Europe, a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) in additional to your travel insurance is a worthy asset. However, it is important to note that it will only cover you within the 31 countries of the EU and EEA (European Economic Area).

The EHIC entitles you to receive state medical care in these countries. However, standards of state medical care across the EU may be different to those you are used to in the UK. Often, the level of service across the EU is comparable to that of the NHS. However, don’t be surprised if you are asked to pay for bedding or food, as other residents in that country are asked to.

Accidents often lead to unforeseen medical costs, so in addition to the EHIC card travel insurance is a must; whether you or travelling to the EU or outside of the EU.

According to the Association of British Insurers (ABI) the average cost of medical treatment overseas can total more than £2,000, with that figure rising rapidly for treatments outside of the EU. It is of paramount importance to take out the best travel insurance you can afford, to avoid paying these costly fees.

Additional costs like being flown home by air ambulance, or treatment for a serious accident or injury would not be covered by the EHIC. As a result, the EHIC is insufficient as a substitute for travel insurance.

Where can you get accident cover?

Since 2008 the Financial Services Authority (FSA) has regulated all sales of travel insurance. However a travel agent may still be able to sell you insurance or at least advise you of a suitable insurer.

Travel insurance entitles you to be treated in a private hospital abroad, which may be more appropriate than using public healthcare. Additionally, all of your medical expenses resulting from the accident or illness are covered up to the limit of your policy.

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