As expat numbers continue to increase worldwide, new research shows that the majority of expats living overseas are concerned about local healthcare.
July 31 / CA, USA /
The number of expats living and working abroad has been increasing rapidly over the last decade. An increasingly mobile workforce and better cross-border country relations have set the stage for a global trend towards international mobility.
Studies show that the number of expats has been growing by by around 5.8% since 2013, and new estimates predict that 87.5 million of us will be living overseas by 2021.
This trend has prompted more researchers to look into the challenges of expat life, and one recent study found that one of the biggest challenges related to access to healthcare.
According to research from a global healthcare provider, a whopping 84% of male expats have needed to access healthcare while abroad, but 72% of them are also concerned about healthcare in the country they’re living in.
The study found that the majority of both men and women would go as far as to travel back to their home country for medical treatment.
Researchers also asked participants in the study about the reason for their concerns and found interesting results. 26% of expat men said they were concerned about the quality of medical care they would receive. An equal number said they were concerned about the cost of treatment.
Other concerns related to being away from their families, logistical concerns, and language barriers.
The number of expats concerned about healthcare also varied depending on the country they were living in. Only 64% of expats living in the UK were worried about local healthcare, compared to 94% of expats living in Hong Kong.
While it seems to be normal to be concerned about healthcare when you start a new life overseas, some experts believe these concerns - particularly financial concerns - could be largely mitigated if more expats were to take out appropriate health insurance.
Regular travel insurance policies often don’t provide the right level of coverage for expats that live abroad long-term. Instead, more suitable global health insurance policies are available, which are designed specifically for expats. Companies like Now Health International provide these types of expat medical insurance for those living abroad for more than one year.
Source: Now Health Insurance