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Travel insurance

If your insurance doesn’t cover medical expenses abroad, consider supplemental insurance. See the US State Department website (www.travel.state.gov/travel/tips/brochures/brochures_1215.html) for medical evacuation and travel-insurance companies.

Find out if your insurer will pay providers directly or reimburse you later for expenditures. You may prefer a policy that pays doctors or hospitals directly rather than requiring you to pay up front and claim later. If you have to claim later, keep all documentation. Some policies ask you to call collect to a center in your home country, where an assessment of your problem is made.

Check that the policy covers ambulances and an emergency flight home. Some policies offer lower and higher medical-expense options; the higher ones are for countries such as the USA, which have extremely high medical costs. There is a wide variety of policies available, so check the small print.