Which type of health insurance do you need in Thailand?

PHOTO: Freepik

There are numerous different types of health insurance available in Thailand to meet your needs. But with so many options, choosing a health insurance plan can be complicated, especially if you are a foreigner living in the country.

When the question arises as to what type of health insurance you should get, you’ll need to make a decision based on your personal situation; how healthy you are, your age, whether you’re planning to move abroad, and whether you frequently travel, among others. Below, we’ve listed the most common types of health insurance in Thailand and who they’re best suited for.

1. Local private health insurance

Health insurance in Thailand
PHOTO: Freepik

As the name suggests, local health insurance will only cover your medical care in Thailand. Some local private health insurance plans, such as AXA SmartCare Executive and SmartCare Optimum, will cover you while travelling abroad. Keep in mind, however, that it’s only for emergency medical treatment in case of accidents. It also typically lasts for a limited amount of time. This means that you might be denied coverage if you’d like to get non-urgent treatment outside of the country.

One of the biggest benefits of a local health insurance plan is the price. The premium is comparatively lower than international health insurance. However, there’s usually a strict limit on covered benefits. For example, there might be a limit on the coverage for certain diseases. This may ultimately force you to spend a sizable amount of money out-of-pocket.

Still, there are numerous advantages that local private health insurance offers. It gives you more freedom to choose your own doctors and hospital compared to the public health insurance for working expats in Thailand. It’s typically adequate for most expats who want more convenience but don’t have a big budget. Local private health insurance is also an excellent option if you don’t need the opportunity to be treated elsewhere or aren’t planning to move out of Thailand any time soon.

2. International Health Insurance

Which type of health insurance do you need in Thailand? | News by Thaiger
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International health insurance essentially covers you wherever you are in the world. These include Thailand, your home country, and any countries you travel to abroad. This means that you don’t have to purchase coverage every time you go to another country. Local health insurance can only cover emergency medical treatment in case of accidents when you’re abroad. However, international health insurance can cover a wide range of eventualities. These may include sudden illness, treatment of injuries, evacuation, and repatriation. AXA International Exclusive, for example, allows you to search their global medical network and connect to the care you need when you need it.

Aside from providing coverage wherever you go in the world, international health insurance plans also have one of the highest levels of coverage in the market. Aside from the main medical coverages, it may also offer additional services in the country you live in. With the AXA International Exclusive, you can get access to the most extensive direct billing medical provider network in Thailand, coverage for pre-existing conditions, and essential health screening and vaccination, among others. Moreover, the premium is highly stable. It doesn’t increase when you have a severe injury or illness that requires expensive treatments.

Since international health insurance is globally portable, it’s suitable for expats who frequently move countries or plan to move back to their home country at some point in the future. If you’re moving to a new country, you won’t have to take out a new health insurance plan. Taking a new health insurance plan when you move can be an issue if you’ve developed a medical condition or suffered a serious illness. In this case, the new insurer in your new home may treat it as a pre-existing condition. Thus, excluding it from coverage.

3. Health Insurance for Retirees

Health insurance in Thailand
PHOTO: iStock

Our health risks and healthcare costs can increase as we age. Therefore, having health insurance is essential for our financial security. Specifically designed for older people who have or are planning to retire, health insurance for retirees will give you adequate medical coverage for any uncertainties regarding your health. The health insurance plans are available for people from the age of 51 up to 80 years old. However, they’re typically renewable until 90 years old.

Those planning to spend their retirement days in Thailand need to apply for a Thai retirement visa (Non-Immigrant O and Non-Immigrant O-A visa). One of the requirements is to have health insurance. The health insurance must not be less than 400,000 baht for inpatient and 40,000 baht for outpatient medical fees. In addition to ensuring that you will be taken care of when you get ill or get into an accident, the health insurance for retirees offered by The Thaiger’s partners also meets these government requirements.

Whether you’re an expat living in Thailand, planning to relocate to the country for a job or to retire, or are simply seeking comprehensive health insurance to cover the cost of healthcare, The Thaiger’s expert advisers are ready to assist you in finding the best health insurance plan. For more information on the health insurance plans, click HERE.

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Cita Catellya

Cita Catellya is an experienced journalist and writer who covers a range of topics from medical and property to leisure and tourism. Her career began as a copywriter 5 years ago, where she worked with several brands in Indonesia to help them increase their online presence. Cita writes in both English and her native Bahasa Indonesia