If your health insurance does not cover you for medical expenses abroad, consider supplemental insurance. Find out in advance if your insurance plan will make payments directly to providers or reimburse you later for overseas health expenditures. (In many countries doctors expect payment in cash.)
Really serious illness or injury may require evacuation, eg to Auckland; make sure that your health insurance has provision for evacuation. Under these circumstances hospitals will accept direct payment from major international insurers but for all other health costs cash up-front is the usual requirement.
New Zealanders may have free access to public but not private facilities in the Cook Islands.
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