Health Insurance for Missionaries?
International travel always comes with a degree of risk, but mission trips can require additional preparation for hazards unique to humanitarian work, such as exposure to stress-causing ethical challenges and limited availability of food, water, lodging, transportation, or medical care.
Here are five reasons to consider missionary medical insurance for your mission trip abroad:
1. Mission travel often leads volunteers to developing countries where there is increased risk of illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 43% - 79% of travelers to developing countries report becoming ill. They’re also at higher risk of diseases due to contaminated food and water.
2. Missionaries may face increased risk of accidents, injuries, and death. Certain types of mission work can require long hours in adverse conditions, which can result in injury. Additionally, the risk of vehicle-related accidents and injuries is higher in developing countries with poorly maintained vehicles and infrastructure.
3. Missionaries can face reduced levels of security and protection. While your mission leader should take all necessary precautions to keep you safe, natural disasters and conflict can be prevalent in areas where humanitarian work is needed.
4. Your regular health insurance may not cover you outside of your home country. The U.S. Department of State urges you to ask your medical insurance company if your policy applies overseas – and if it covers emergency expenses such as medical evacuation. If it doesn’t, mission trip insurance can provide the coverage you need for your time abroad.
5. Your visa may require travel medical insurance or proof that you’ll be able to pay for unexpected expenses (like medical expenses) incurred in your host country. Our Atlas Travel and Atlas Group plans meet the requirements of many visas, including Europe’s Schengen visa. They also provide policyholders with a visa letter you can use to help prove your ability to pay for unexpected medical expenses.