According to research published by international healthcare group Bupa, of the one million Australian expatriates living overseas, as many as one fifth relocated without first securing adequate levels of health insurance.
The research findings, which were published in a recent press release, also reveal that 1 in 4 Australians expatriates do not consider international healthcare insurance to be important and many of them believe that they will be cared for overseas in the event of an emergency, whether they have health insurance or not.
Discussing the results of the survey, Bupa’s Director of human resources, Penny Lovett, expressed concerns that expatriates who relocate without sufficient insurance run a real risk that they could be left without treatment in the event that they fall seriously ill. She also disclosed that companies who relocate Australian citizens overseas for work purposes should take responsibility for ensuring that they employees are fully informed of the importance of securing adequate health insurance: “Taking a ‘no surprises’ approach helps build a foundation for an effective working and transitional experience,” she said.
In a press release, Lovett suggested four tips for Australian organizations that planned on sending their employees abroad for work purposes:
- Ensure that the HR team is fully aware of the need for securing healthcare insurance and that they have the appropriate knowledge and tools to assist employees who are relocating.
- Compile an information pack that contains all the information relocating employees need to make an informed decision about the products and services they secure before moving abroad.
- Recognize the importance of providing accurate advice about international health cover and ensure that company policies and procedures fully support relocating employees.
- Consider providing healthcare cover as part of a relocation package.
If you are relocating overseas and are unsure as to the levels and types of insurance you will need to ensure that your stay abroad is safe and your interests are protected, you should check out our free guide to expat insurance. It contains everything you need to know about insurance coverage, including a medical insurance glossary and a free insurance checklist.