Health Care and Retiring Out of Country

Jun 24, 2019

  1. somarco
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    somarco GA Medicare Expert

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    Medicare doesn't cover most out of country claims. What do tell your clients who want to retire out of country?

    Should they keep Medicare coverage or drop it? Which countries have the best health care providers? Which should be avoided?

    Can ex-pats purchase permanent health insurance or are their only choices the international travel plans?
     
    somarco, Jun 24, 2019
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  2. Mike Siegal
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    Mike Siegal Super Genius

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    Go with Dual Citizenship (its my hunch)
     
  3. LostDollar
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    LostDollar Guru

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    Sometime back I was on a plane with a guy who had retired in Honduras.

    That was before I "got involved" with retiree insurance, so I didn't know to ask that question. I think most of the conversation was involved with his problems in getting Honduran construction done to American code standards instead of Honduran ones.

    I think the health conversation covered two things, He came back to the states once each year for a thorough checkup and he liked the medical system because Honduran doctors still made house calls.

    Considering that many of the private residences had guards with machine guns, I'm not sure what I think of the concept of retiring to Honduras. I about got shot by one of those guys at 10-11 at night and then exchanged a friendly greeting with him around 7 the following morning when he was walking home!

    Looks like a pretty big split, wealthy and poor there. (And I can't think of why I would want a dual US Honduran citizenship.)
     
  4. LewB
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    LewB Expert

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    I have a friend who is looking to retire in Costa Rica. His plan is to keep his Medicare and keep his Medicare supplement until he is sure he wants to spend the rest of his life there.

    In the meantime, he told me he could sign up for a regular health plan in Costa Rica without giving up his US citizenship.

    Not sure, what paperwork was involved but if you want, I can contact him to find out.
     
    LewB, Jun 24, 2019
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  5. somarco
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    somarco GA Medicare Expert

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    Thanks, but looking for guidance.

    At this point I don't have any clients (that I am aware of) who are thinking of moving out of the country but you never know.

    I have clients who travel out of country from time to time and I always suggest international travel medical coverage.

    LMGTFY generates 143 MILLION results, so must be a bunch of folks at least thinking about that.

    I found these links. You might share with your friend and see what he/she has to say.

    Healthcare in Costa Rica - International Living Countries

    8 Important Tips about Healthcare for Expats in Costa Rica

    A Healthcare Guide For Expat Retirees In Costa Rica

    People who like the idea of "free" health care may not be a fan of the wait times.
     
    somarco, Jun 24, 2019
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  6. LewB
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    Thanks for the info I will pass it on to him.
     
    LewB, Jun 24, 2019
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  7. Mike Siegal
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    Mike Siegal Super Genius

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    Let me ask you a question BOB (If i may...i'm no expert on medicare).

    How long do you have to 'reside in the states' (how many mths out of the yr) to qualify for Medicare ?

    Anyone know?
     
  8. somarco
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    somarco GA Medicare Expert

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    5 years for foreign nationals
     
    somarco, Jun 24, 2019
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  9. justsayinisall
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    This came up when I worked at UHG and it was regarding a supplement with the foreign travel emergency benefit. I was told that as long as the person returns to the US every 60 days the time frame would be re-set. They went as far to say that the person wouldn't even have to de-plane, just touch down in the US every 60 days.

    It wouldn't help for non-emergent situations though.
     
  10. somarco
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    somarco GA Medicare Expert

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    Thanks.

    The reason for this post was two-fold.

    One, to determine if anyone here had first hand experience with clients moving out of country. Also to see what others have found in these situations.

    I know travelers to certain countries have proof of insurance requirements. I believe this mostly applies to those with a Schengen visa but there could be other situations. Especially if you are going to take up residence.

    Secondly, I was wondering if there were a product I could market to those folks. Even then, probably doesn't happen enough to pursue.
     
    somarco, Jun 25, 2019
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