Before You Go
Bring all prescription medications you may need with you, including enough for an extra day or two, in case flights are canceled or travel is delayed for any reason. Wear a medical-alert bracelet if you have a health problem, to help medical staff treat you properly in an emergency. Eyewear prescriptions and meds, left in their original containers for ease through customs, are best packed in carry-on luggage in case bags go missing. Keep a detailed written list in your purse or wallet as a backup. Meds are often the last thing packed, and therefore frequently forgotten; put them in an obvious place as you pack so you don’t overlook them as you leave home.
Travel and Medical Insurance
Any industry veteran will tell you travel insurance—while often deemed unnecessary—is a prudent investment, particularly if your regular health insurance does not cover overseas expenses or treatment. As well, primary insurers can sometimes take up to two weeks to verify a patient’s policy details—an unworkable delay in an emergency. Bermuda’s hospital cannot treat overseas patients who are not covered by insurance, unless they are able to pay on the spot. In an emergency, traveler’s health insurance avoids logistical nightmares, allowing for confirmation of an overseas hospital bed and immediate air-ambulance transport. Take time to review your health care plan before leaving home to find out exactly what is covered, as well as any restrictions that might affect the choice of hospital in an emergency. Remember, it’s not just the patient who may need help in an emergency but also relatives or companions who may have to find accommodation or make other travel plans while a patient is in the hospital.
© Rosemary Jones from Moon Bermuda, 2nd Edition