Case Study - Medical Emergency in Italy

Published on Wednesday, November 25, 2015
A stroke in Italy cost one family almost $90,000.

Imagine you have a client who decided to give his mom a birthday surprise with a vacation to Italy! The whole family is excited and the trip has been going exactly as planned. Then something happens that you’ll never forget: The mom has a stroke and is hospitalized. What would you do?

No travel insurance? That’s a problem.

If your client didn’t buy travel insurance for the trip, he may have to deal with situations like these:

  • He doesn't know how to find the best hospital nearby (and neither do you).
  • He must stay in Italy with his mom while the rest of the family flies home. How much will it cost to stay in a hotel while his mom is in the hospital? What about extra food, transportation and incidentals?
  • He doesn’t speak Italian and the language barrier is tough to break through. It's hard to communicate with the doctors and nurses.
  • He is unsure when and how his mother will return home. How will he pay for that transportation? In this case, transportation costs alone were more than $85,000.

When you consider these expenses, they seem unbearable. How will he afford it all? Options include maxing out credit cards, and possibly mortgaging his home. (While it seems extreme, as a travel insurance company, we’ve seen it happen!)

Travel Insurance Makes It Easy

If your client had travel insurance from RoamRight, the situation would look like this:

  • He could focus on his mom and her recovery, not worry about the costs involved. He’s talked to his travel insurance provider and knows his policy will cover the extra hotel stay, as well as incidentals that he’ll have to buy while there.
  • On Call, RoamRight’s 24 hour assistance provider, will communicate with the local doctors and report any new information. This, in addition with the translation tool available in the RoamRight app, cut through the language barrier.
  • On Call will also set up transportation for him and his mother to return home safely. The travel insurance policy will pay for this transfer home.

This specific situation happened to one of RoamRight’s customers. They planned their dream trip and it was interrupted by the unfortunate stroke their mother had while in Italy. She needed to stay there for 3 weeks longer than expected to get the proper care before being well enough to fly home and her son was able to stay with her. This was all covered under their RoamRight travel insurance policy and they were reimbursed for all unexpected expenses that were accrued over the extra 3 weeks overseas.

The Case For Travel Insurance

The best way to summarize this traveler’s experience is through a quick calculation:

Cost of Medical Care and Air Ambulance Evacuation $85,000
Cost of Family's Interrupted Trip and Additional Expenses $2,600
Total Unanticipated Costs $87,600
Cost of Travel Insurance For The Entire Family $223

Now that’s an investment that’s worth it! Would you travel without travel insurance and take the risk? We’d love to hear from you in our comments below.

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