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Travel insurance after a stroke

Travel insurance after a stroke

Over 100,000 people a year in the UK suffer a stroke – an affliction that can make finding travel insurance a challenge. We’ll compare a range of providers to help you find the cover you need.

Patrick Ikhena
From the Travel team
4
minute read
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Posted 9 OCTOBER 2019

Can I get travel insurance if I’ve had a stroke?

The short answer is yes. When you run a travel insurance quote with us, you’ll be asked to provide details of any pre-existing medical conditions, including whether you’ve ever suffered a stroke.

If you’ve had a stroke, you might be quoted a higher premium than would otherwise be the case. Depending on the severity of your condition, you might only be able to find cover with a travel insurance provider that specialises in pre-existing medical conditions.

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

On 7 September 2020, the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) updated the list of countries that are exempt from its ongoing advice against all non-essential international travel.

If you choose to travel overseas to a destination where the FCDO is advising against non-essential travel at the time of your departure, then your insurance policy will be invalid, and any claim likely to be rejected.

For domestic travel, please check the local public health rules for the destination you wish to travel to within the United Kingdom.

For more information, please see our coronavirus and travel insurance page.

What do insurance providers need to know?

You’ll have to let your provider know how many strokes you’ve had and how long ago they were. You’ll also be expected to say whether you’re awaiting any surgeries or scans relating to your condition and if you’ve had any transient ischaemic attacks (TIA), also known as a mini-stroke.

If you take any medication to thin the blood, you’ll have to declare how much you take and how often.

Will an insurance provider approve my application?

Once you’ve disclosed your medical history, a travel insurance provider may decide to cover your pre-existing conditions at a higher premium or with a higher excess, or offer cover with very specific restrictions.

A provider may refuse to cover your pre-existing conditions but provide cover for any new issues that arise while you’re away. When you compare with us, we’ll return quotes on insurance providers that are willing to provide cover on the basis of the information you give in your quote.

How can a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) help?

The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)** is free via the NHS and provides you with free or discounted treatment in state hospitals in European Union countries and in Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. It will also cover you for any treatment for pre-existing conditions, not just ones that have occurred when you were abroad.

However, it doesn’t carry the same range of benefits as travel insurance and it won’t cover you for treatment at a private hospital.

**UK residents can use their EHIC after the 31 January during the transition phase of the UK leaving the EU. This means that the EHIC can continued to be used in the same way until the 31 December 2020. What happens to the status of the EHIC after the transition phase will be decided as part of the negotiations on the future UK-EU relationship.

What should I consider before travelling if I’ve had a stroke?

Check with your doctor that you’re fit to fly before you book your holiday. You may be asked to avoid flying for the first few weeks after a stroke to avoid any further complications.

If you need to travel with medication, make sure you pack it in your hand luggage and take enough with you. Carry a letter from your GP stating the medication that you need. It’s always a good idea to get to the airport early to avoid any delays caused by issues around carrying your medication.

Check with your airline when you book, or a few days in advance of flying, to confirm any requirements relating to the equipment you’re taking. Most airlines will allow you to carry two mobility items for free. However, if you have a wheelchair, it will need to be checked in.

Keep your travel insurance provider’s details with you in case you need to contact them while you’re away.

Does it matter where I travel to?

When travelling after a stroke, it’s important to consider where you’re going to. If it involves taking a long-haul flight, this can slow the blood flow around the body, making it more likely to clot. Ask your doctor for advice about how to avoid a deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Those who have had a stroke or over 60 are at a higher risk of developing DVT.

It’s worth finding out about medical facilities at your destination in case you need care while you’re away.

Compare travel insurance

We compare policies from some of the market’s leading travel insurance providers. Once you tell us about any pre-existing conditions, where you’ll be going and how long for, we’ll be able to show you what policies are available.

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