We often find our customers asking, "one of the visitors I am expecting is pregnant. Do you have travel insurance that covers pregnancy- and maternity-related expenses while visiting the U.S.?"
Very rarely do short-term visitors medical insurance plans provide coverage for pregnancy and childbirth while traveling abroad.
Avoid International Travel During Pregnancy if Possible
It might be unavoidable for some women to travel while they are pregnant for both business and personal reasons. However, unless it is absolutely necessary, it is best to avoid traveling during pregnancy. Pregnancy is considered a medically high risk period. You may face minor problems to serious complications, including morning sickness or pre-term birth, while you are traveling abroad. While there is every possibility of such a situation taking place at home, the possibility and complexity of the whole situation increases with the stress of international travel.
Pregnancy and Visitors Medical Insurance
Since pregnancy is viewed as a medically high risk period, insurance companies do not usually cover it for short term customers. Typically, international health insurance plans are designed to provide coverage for unforeseen illness, injuries and accidents while traveling. Most travel medical insurance plans do not cover maternity, pregnancy, or childbirth. Even the few plans that do provide little coverage, like Safe Travels USA Comprehensive and Atlas International, often impose many restrictions. It is not a cost-effective option for insurance companies to offer coverage for pregnancy and related issues for visitors.
Be Prepared to Pay Big Bills for an Emergency
If you cannot avoid foreign travel during pregnancy, it is important to be aware of the coverage limitations. Expect to pay significant medical bills for pregnancy-related complications or childbirth. It is important to be both emotionally and financially prepared to deal with any unforeseen pregnancy complications while traveling abroad.
If you or your sponsor cannot bear the financial burden of these medical costs, especially in the U.S. where healthcare is extremely expensive, one of the few solutions that you have in your disposal is to contact local charitable hospitals or government-sponsored programs to find out if you are eligible for some benefits through them.
Responsibility of the Sponsor
If you are planning to sponsor a pregnant woman in the U.S. without having sufficient financial means in case of an emergency, you may be legally responsible to pay the bills incurred by her for a hospital stay, emergency room visit, ambulance ride, or any other public utility service. So before sponsoring a pregnant woman, it is important to be sure that at least one of you is capable of handling the financial burden of pregnancy-related medical costs.
Buying Visitors Insurance for Other Emergencies
Some of our customers often question, "though the visitor is pregnant, she has had no complications so far and has no plans of giving birth in the U.S.; is there an insurance policy that would offer medical coverage for her?"
While it is true, that travel medical insurance usually has very little or no coverage for maternity or pregnancy, you can still purchase a medical insurance plan that could protect you against any other sickness or injury unrelated to pregnancy.
You can compare, get quotes & purchase one of the comprehensive visitors insurance plans that would provide coverage for unforeseen sickness and injury, unrelated to pregnancy or any other pre-existing condition.
For more information about traveling while pregnant and some helpful tips if it is unavoidable, see our infographic Travel Tips for Expecting Mothers.
If you need more information on insurance or have a specific question, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Our licensed insurance experts will be happy to assist you.