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Medical insurance for Americans living in France

Medical insurance for Americans living in France

Old Sep 21st, 2007, 10:58 AM
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Medical insurance for Americans living in France

I live in France about 6 months each year. I go back and forth between the US and France 3 times per year. I have residency (Carte de Sejour). As I will soon be on Medicare which does not cover me out of the USA I will no longer have medical coverage in France. Does anyone know of a basic medical insurance that can be purchased for 1-3 months at a time that provides coverage while in France? If it makes a difference my official address in France is Paris.

Thanks for any help.

Larry J
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 11:15 AM
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Buying individual private health insurance in the US is really expensive. HOwever, if you are entitled to Medicare, go to the Medigap policy description page (such as on AARP's website) and there are some of the more expensive policies that cover costs outside the US. Now those are meant to be supplementary, such as people traveling, so I don't know how it would work for someone living in France half the year. But it's a start as to where to look. Plans C-J do cover foreign travel emergencies, but I assume that's what you want if you are abroad only half the year. Any routine care or planned procedures could be done when you are at home.


Aside from that, I think many BCBS plans cover costs abroad, and they even have some provider networks set up in foreign countries. So, find your local BCBS plan in the US and what kind of policies they have.
Those are regular policies, not travel policies, though.

I really don't know about buying one for 1-3 months at a time, though, that is really unusual. That is pretty much solely a travel policy. Insurance companies can't cover at the same price people who are going in and out of the system routinely, as those kind of people tend to be high cost and unpredictable (I do consulting to insurers, including Medicare and other govt. programs), and that's often why they go in and out of the system.

I just checked policies on www.insuremytrip.com, assuming you mainly want the medical, so leave off air and make it a very low amount otherwise -- it seemed to have no problem giving me a quote for a six month policy at a much cheaper rate than a regular US policy would be. Did you try that?
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 11:20 AM
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Most travel policies will cover for up to three months at a time.
Not sure how the health care system works in France but maybe you can make voluntary contributions to their system to be covered there as you have residency.
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 11:27 AM
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Most Medicare supplemnts only cover up to a certain amount out of the USA. Try this Americans in Paris website for heath insurance questions and other tips for expats

http://www.americansinfrance.net/Qan..._in_France.cfm
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 11:43 AM
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You will probably want a medigap plan anyway.

BC/BS Preferred Provider Plan does cover you outside the US for emergency care.

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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 11:54 AM
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I believe that at least some of the Senior Advantage plans cover you overseas. Kaiser (of Northern California) Senior Advantage does.
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 11:57 AM
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You might also check out BUPA, a UK based company - we've been insured with them for years and they provide excellent coverage for us here in France... as well as when we travel anywhere in the world.

www.bupa.co.uk

PB
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Old Sep 22nd, 2007, 06:30 AM
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I like most Americans am going to buy a Medigap or Medicare supplemtary plan to cover medical expenses not paid by Medicare Part A and B and I have found a plan from Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield that covers emergency services outside of the USA. Since I spend so much time in France I am still hoping to find something with a little more benefits when in France. Thanks very much PBProvence for your recommendation of Bupa. I have e-mailed them for information and a price quote.

For anyone else with a similar situation you will find that having residency in France (Carte de Sejour) does not entitle you to participate in the French national health system. A requirement for obtaining French residency is to show written proof of independant medical insurance and assuring the French government that you will not be a burden to their health system. Residency is not at all the same as citizenship.

Thanks to those who offered suggestions and I would much appreciate suggestions from other Americans living in France.

Larry J
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Old Sep 22nd, 2007, 08:23 AM
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There are other companies that can provide US style insurance at excellent expat rates.
I am presently insured with SRI (now Seven Corners). As an expat with a CdS spending 6 months here and 6 months there, I have also been insured by Alptis a French company providing hospitization only insurance. The rate for SRI was a little better, but with the USD/euro rate of exchange, it became a whole lot better.
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