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Having a child is a huge responsibility that along with its joys and challenges often brings financial burden. The cost of having a child overseas as an expat can be very high. Pre-natal visits, labor and delivery cost, post natal care and unforeseen complications, can often add up to more that USD15,000 in an international hospital. Many expats who are used to state sponsored health care systems do not anticipate the implications of having a child abroad.

In the event of a child being born with complications or congenital birth defects, the cost can prove to be astronomical. Unless insured correctly the financial implications for the family can be devastating.

Fortunately, most international insurance plans have a maternity option. The coverage understandably has restrictions on the total amount that can be claimed and applies waiting periods before you can claim. Most international insurance policies assign at least 10 months waiting period before accepting any claims for maternity related costs.

Normally maternity cover would include costs related to:

  • Pre- and Postnatal treatments.
  • Normal delivery or delivery with complications.
  • Home delivery costs.
  • Medically prescribed Caesarian.
  • Delivery following fertility treatment.

More comprehensive maternity plans will also cover:

It is important to plan ahead when having a child overseas, to identify the right medical facilities for delivery as well as pre and post delivery care. When the child has been born they normally should be added on to the plan within 4 weeks to give 'continuous cover'. Most insurers charge an additional premium to add the new born child to the cover but some plans offer discounts for families and additional children so if you are planning to have a large family look for a plan that offers discounts.

New Born Care

In many cases, if a plan has a maternity cover option, it will also offer coverage for a new born child. A new born child benefit is usually subjecting to a waiting period of 10 months from the start of the plan, meaning that from the start of a policy, you must wait 10 months before you can make a claim related to a new born child.

In regards to covering a new born child there are usually only two options. These are:

Born into the Plan

When the child is born into the plan you can be assured that no matter what the child's state of health, coverage is guaranteed indefinitely. To have the child born into the plan it is necessary to inform the insurer soon after the birth so that you can ensure continued coverage. If you have a child born into the plan, the policy premium will normally increase.

Free benefit for the Child

Many plans will offer free cover for a new born child. The child is usually entitled to cover for a period of 30 days or up to $ 30,000 in cash benefits. To continue coverage after the limits have been reached an application must be sent to the insurer. A free new born benefit is usually directly linked to a maternity benefit.

In the situation that a child is born with any medical conditions, it is referred to as having a congenital birth defect. Congenital birth defects can be benign (birth marks, minor skin conditions) or life threatening, in some cases congenital birth defects can be extremely costly to treat. It is important to protect yourself in the event that your child is born with a costly medical condition.

Congenital birth defects can be characterized as being in one of four areas:

  • Genetic.
  • Structural or metabolic.
  • Congenital infections.
  • Heart and circulatory system defects.

When having a child, the last thing that any parent should worry about is being able to cover the expenses. An international medical insurance plan can help provide the protection that you need. For more information about an international medical insurance plan, or to receive a free quote, please contact us.