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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone[U[/U]. Today I found out a huge problem. I'm pretty devastated. Ive been trying to get my visa. Everything was going well till I applied for health insurance which is Required.
I was told by Sanitas that because I had cancer in 2011, I cannot get insurance.
They said that NO company in Spain would insure me.
I want to add that I was not hospitalized and had no surgery, just out patient chemo and radiation. My doctor told me this year that I was cured and would need in further monitoring.
Sanitas said the rule is no cancer for 10 years. I had been in touch with them for several months but there had been no mention of this before. I asked if cancer could just be left out of the policy but they said no.
Has anyone had this experience and found a solution. I'm about to cry!:confused:
Imelda
 

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The medical cover: If one is applying for residence status they are required to have full medical cover.

If no company will provide that cover for you, I do not know any way that can be avoided.
 

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I'm not surprised. Hopefully someone will have a solution for you
 

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Having spent decades working in the insurance industry and knowing it inside out. If you need insurance, just accidentally forget you ever had cancer (ie don't disclose it)... !

If the insurance company finds out at a later date (usually through a claim IF it investigates), the insurance company will likely void the policy in cases where it would not have issued cover under full disclosure, and refund premiums paid. Alternatively it may go for a change of premium or other contractual change, but point is if you need insurance for immigration purposes, just don't disclose.

If you wanted to have a clean conscience later, once you have residence just call the insurance company and says 'whoops, forgot to mention something...', and the policy will be voided and you get your premiums back.

You didn't hear it from me.......
 

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Hi everyone[U[/U]. Today I found out a huge problem. I'm pretty devastated. Ive been trying to get my visa. Everything was going well till I applied for health insurance which is Required.
I was told by Sanitas that because I had cancer in 2011, I cannot get insurance.
They said that NO company in Spain would insure me.
I want to add that I was not hospitalized and had no surgery, just out patient chemo and radiation. My doctor told me this year that I was cured and would need in further monitoring.
Sanitas said the rule is no cancer for 10 years. I had been in touch with them for several months but there had been no mention of this before. I asked if cancer could just be left out of the policy but they said no.
Has anyone had this experience and found a solution. I'm about to cry!:confused:
Imelda


Ditto to above poster.

As someone who's mother died of breast cancer just 4 years ago at 65, I would like to give a huge f#$% you to Sanitas on your behalf. People only care when it happens to them and it shouldn't be that way.

I learned about preexisting conditions a few years ago because I have asthma. I learned to momentarily have amnesia when it comes to obtaining insurance, and I also made sure to communicate to my doctor (in the US) to put down a different medical code, so that I would be covered. IE., "I have a history of asthma, but do you mind putting down that I came in for spontaneous wheezing and give me a script for Advair?". Most all doctors will have no problem doing so.

I was just diagnosed with Lupus and Sjogren's in July. I am sort of in the same boat as you. I knew from past experiences that I would never get coverage if I listed Lupus on my application. So I was approved. The problem now is that I now need to figure out a way to obtain prednisone and Plaquenil in the next couple of months. That is when I'll run out of medication.

My advice to you would be to apply to another private insurance company--there are many--and get a case of momentary amnesia through omission. Yes omission. It sounds wrong, but who's more wrong? An insurance company that won't insure a cancer survivor, or "having amnesia" to get coverage that you could never get w/o omission? It's a catch 22 and I no longer feel guilty about it. And before anyone tries to talk you down from their moral high horse ask them if they suffer from a preexisting condition like cancer or Lupus. Don't feel bad. Apply again with other companies if its possible. You'll get covered.

The only issue you'll have is trying to get your visits/meds covered if related to cancer. But there are ways around that too. You just have to communicate with your doctor. It's all about how they notate everything. If a condition is "discovered" then it's not a preexisting condition. And there's no way an international insurance company can pull your medical records. At least they can't if you're from the US. It's all about how the doctor "processes" your claim. Best of luck to you.
 

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If you wanted to have a clean conscience later, once you have residence just call the insurance company and says 'whoops, forgot to mention something...', and the policy will be voided and you get your premiums back.

You didn't hear it from me.......
No offence to your previous occupation, but at least in the US, insurance companies are pure evil, caring only about $$$ and viewing sick people as liabilities, and "things" that need to hurry up and die. Medical insurance companies in particular truly disgust me and I have no qualms about "forgetting".
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Amnesia

No offence to your previous occupation, but at least in the US, insurance companies are pure evil, caring only about $$$ and viewing sick people as liabilities, and "things" that need to hurry up and die. Medical insurance companies in particular truly disgust me and I have no qualms about "forgetting".
What you are saying is so true. Sanitas was so nice to me for over 6 months and then suddenly hit me with this news. When they were interviewing me today they did not bring up recent cancers. Their only question was about hospitalization. I was not hospitalized for the 2011 cancer. I was treated out patient with chemo and radiation. I WAS hospitalized for a totally unrelated cancer in 1997. That, they were ok with cause it was over 10 years ago and there was no reoccurrance. But me, I thought I would bring up this 2011 cancer, just to be a good girl ( aka "Idiot")
Their application did not ask for cancers just hospitalization, like I said. When I pointed this out to them , they got quite annoyed! But at least I had the sense to ask if they reported their findings to other insurance companies and they said no.
So I may try get amnesia next time.
 

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I would be very careful about not giving full disclosure. It may work in USA but in Europe there has been many newspaper and TV reports of insurance companies refusing to pay out on trivialities. One woman who was hospitalised in Spain for a serious asthma attack was refused payment just because she hadn't informed them her medication had changed. Someone I know was given a huge bill for a by-pass because they failed to disclose they had had treatment for blood pressure in the past.

Why not take a look at other expat insurance, we did BUPA worldwide when living abroad. On this forum page there is an ad right now for some companies.

Compare International Health Insurance - Get Free Quotes - ExpatFinder.com
 

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I would be very careful about not giving full disclosure. It may work in USA but in Europe there has been many newspaper and TV reports of insurance companies refusing to pay out on trivialities. One woman who was hospitalised in Spain for a serious asthma attack was refused payment just because she hadn't informed them her medication had changed. Someone I know was given a huge bill for a by-pass because they failed to disclose they had had treatment for blood pressure in the past.

Why not take a look at other expat insurance, we did BUPA worldwide when living abroad. On this forum page there is an ad right now for some companies.

Compare International Health Insurance - Get Free Quotes - ExpatFinder.com
I agree. I would not risk not disclosing something, as if you reeived treatment and the insurane company investigated subsequently, not only would your cover be void but you would be left with a huge bill, as you say.
 

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I agree. I would not risk not disclosing something, as if you reeived treatment and the insurane company investigated subsequently, not only would your cover be void but you would be left with a huge bill, as you say.
If disclosing, OP is informed they cannot get insurance, so there will be no coverage for the huge bill anyway.

Someone mentioned the US. Don't know if its the same in Europe, but there are a number of required contractual clauses in the US, one of which is the incontestibility clause. This only allows the insurer to void a policy on misrepresentation for a period of 2 or 3 years after a policy is issued.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Obama care

If disclosing, OP is informed they cannot get insurance, so there will be no coverage for the huge bill anyway.

Someone mentioned the US. Don't know if its the same in Europe, but there are a number of required contractual clauses in the US, one of which is the incontestibility clause. This only allows the insurer to void a policy on misrepresentation for a period of 2 or 3 years after a policy is issued.
As you know, there have been many revisions of our health care here in the US. Obama care ended the pre-existing clause so that everyone was eligible for insurance. Before I retired I was paying over $1000 per month for insurance through Obama care. But that is because I chose the most expensive policy. I AM paranoid about cancer and that policy covered me completely when I got another cancer at 62 Yrs. I now pay approximately $110 to Medicare and another $300 for the best supplemental coverage. Cigna international is about $750 per month. That's a lot. Not sure if I can afford that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I would be very careful about not giving full disclosure. It may work in USA but in Europe there has been many newspaper and TV reports of insurance companies refusing to pay out on trivialities. One woman who was hospitalised in Spain for a serious asthma attack was refused payment just because she hadn't informed them her medication had changed. Someone I know was given a huge bill for a by-pass because they failed to disclose they had had treatment for blood pressure in the past.

Why not take a look at other expat insurance, we did BUPA worldwide when living abroad. On this forum page there is an ad right now for some companies.

Compare International Health Insurance - Get Free Quotes - ExpatFinder.com
Thanks Isobella, I will check them out. You've been very helpful and supportive. Ill keep you all informed.
 

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No offence to your previous occupation, but at least in the US, insurance companies are pure evil, caring only about $$$ and viewing sick people as liabilities, and "things" that need to hurry up and die. Medical insurance companies in particular truly disgust me and I have no qualms about "forgetting".
No offence taken. My experience in the insurance industry enables me to confirm is just as bad on the inside as it looks from the outside.....

When my step-father died I made a claim with 11 insurance companies in a situation where he had died in Spain on holiday (but was living in UK). For reasons I can't remember, Spain didn't issue a death cert., so the claims had to be made without one. I had a Grant of Probate issued from a UK court and made the claims along with all the required documentation (Grant of Probate overrides need for a death cert.). Only TWO of the companies understood that my claim applications were correct under the circumstances, while the other 9 gave versions of 'you need a death cert' (not true).

Eventually they all caved once I pointed out how and why they were wrong, but fact was I had 9/11 insurance companies telling me my claim was invalid when it was anything but - lesson being if ever there is even a slight complication, decisions are made by lower level admin staff who frequently (usually) don't know the law and just work of a simple script sheet, so denying claims if they don't tick the boxes.
 

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Thanks Isobella, I will check them out. You've been very helpful and supportive. Ill keep you all informed.
Ifn,

I don't agree with that posters advice. Even when you choose expat insurance the requirement is to disclose "preexisting conditions". And while you may get coverage by disclosing, your monthly premium will be so astronomically high as to prevent you from getting coverage in the first place. FYI, I just read my policy and sure enough it says that "preexisting conditions" are not covered. I probably would've been denied if I had disclosed Lupus, or been given a super high premium.

10 years ago the insurance company wanted to charge me an extra US $300 per month for having asthma (with no hospitalisations or ER visits to speak of). I just wheezed a lot. This was when I was 23. I can only imagine what that would've been today at the age of 33. Remember the older you are, the more "expensive" you become in their algorithm.

I wanted to "do the right thing" once. And that's how I remained uninsured for 3 years in my early 20s too. Please don't feel bad. The medical insurance sector is a booming business. It's a money maker and for good reason. What most don't know is that these companies have all sorts of backroom contracts w/hospitals and doctors so that they end up paying only 30% of what a hospital or doctor would charge someone who's uninsured. That is why most private insurance companies are so willing to accept 30-40% of the bill if you pay in "cash".

I know way too much about this because I had to sue my insurance company and eventually settled. They will get you with "vague" language and "gotcha" clauses. I'm paying €110/month for being 33 and in "perfect health". It's really just there for emergencies like breaking a leg or some type of accident. Not to treat my lupus. My lupus isn't bad enough that I need to be hospitalized. I just need cheap meds.


PM if you have any questions.
 

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I'm paying €110/month for being 33 and in "perfect health".
That seems high. We're currently paying €62 per month each -my husband turns 68 next month and I am 61. I now have a heart condition (which I genuinely didn't have or at least didin't know I had when we took out the policy, and only found out after we'd had the policy for about 7 years) and the company have been fine about it.
 

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That seems high. We're currently paying €62 per month each -my husband turns 68 next month and I am 61. I now have a heart condition (which I genuinely didn't have or at least didin't know I had when we took out the policy, and only found out after we'd had the policy for about 7 years) and the company have been fine about it.
Do you have a deductible/excess? It's so high because I have no deductible and no restrictions on prescriptions. The no deductible/excess was required by the consulate in Los Angeles. I presented insurance the first time, but they denied it because it had a deductible/excess.

If no excess what company do you use. I am open to switching to something cheaper as I think mine is too expensive also for what I'm getting.


Thanks,
 

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If it's only there for breaking a leg why bother taking out insurance, just ring fence yourself.
It's a requirement for a student visa. You cannot get a student visa without it. So that's primarily why I have it.

And then secondly, because sometimes [email protected]! happens. You just never know. I've heard to many horror stories of people paying €4000-5000 euros for a broken leg out of pocket.
 
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