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Hi,

For anyone considering relocating to NZ, you need to be aware of the country's very strict health laws enforced by the private medical insurance companies.

My wife had one benign breast cyst drained in 2008. Every single subsequent visit to the doctor was 100% fine, no more problems. Its now 2015.

We have been living and working in NZ on a Work Visa for 2 years and were considering in getting the NZ Resident Visa, so we started talking to the very few private medical insurance companies here.

All of them have responded in the same way: we will NOT cover your wife's condition, EVER!

We were even willing to pay extra - but they all declined.

Having lived in 8 other countries before (1st & 3rd world), we have not ever experienced this treatment from a private medical insurance company before. We were never rejected like this before.
Some countries have a waiting period, of 3 to 6 to 12 month for pre-existing conditions...but we have never encountered a complete deny clause like in NZ.

We are absolutely in shock at this country's private medical insurance companies, and I am afraid that this negative treatment leaves us with only one choice - we will definitely not be getting the NZ Resident Visa, and will be leaving this country as soon as we can.

No wonder people are leaving NZ and the country is short on skills.

Still in shock.
SK
 

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Hi,

For anyone considering relocating to NZ, you need to be aware of the country's very strict health laws enforced by the private medical insurance companies.

My wife had one benign breast cyst drained in 2008. Every single subsequent visit to the doctor was 100% fine, no more problems. Its now 2015.

We have been living and working in NZ on a Work Visa for 2 years and were considering in getting the NZ Resident Visa, so we started talking to the very few private medical insurance companies here.

All of them have responded in the same way: we will NOT cover your wife's condition, EVER!

We were even willing to pay extra - but they all declined.

Having lived in 8 other countries before (1st & 3rd world), we have not ever experienced this treatment from a private medical insurance company before. We were never rejected like this before.
Some countries have a waiting period, of 3 to 6 to 12 month for pre-existing conditions...but we have never encountered a complete deny clause like in NZ.

We are absolutely in shock at this country's private medical insurance companies, and I am afraid that this negative treatment leaves us with only one choice - we will definitely not be getting the NZ Resident Visa, and will be leaving this country as soon as we can.

No wonder people are leaving NZ and the country is short on skills.

Still in shock.
SK
Wow, that IS terrible to happen after having settled in for 2 years.

I don't want to minimize your frustration, but, I did want to point out that at least NZ *does* have a national healthcare system... which is still much more than what you would get in the US, where I moved from.

Only until last year when the US Affordable Care Act (otherwise known as Obamacare) was rolled out, private insurers could do the exact same thing--deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions (I'm not saying they would have in your case, only that they *could* have if they wanted to), and there is *no* national system to fall back on, wait times or not. Even now that they *cannot* deny coverage, yes, you can get healthcare, but it comes at significant cost--there remains no legitimately "free" or low-cost single payer healthcare system for people to use, which is a shame. And, I say this as a former psychiatric nurse who worked in California for 19 years...
 

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Sorry to hear about the problem you've been having.

The only real advantage to having health insurance in NZ is :
a) You can get in quicker for non urgent conditions
b) You can have elective surgery

If you have a life threatening condition you can get into a public hospital straight away and it is all free, regardless of whether you have insurance. If you have a non life threatening condition, there is often a waiting list, which means you will have to wait longer to get it looked at. For example, you may be waiting years for a hip replacement under the public system (but it will be free), but get in straight away by going private. Other than that, health insurance here is a ripoff anyway IMO. I don't even have any insurance myself.
 

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I agree with you and we will be stopping or private health insurance very soon. I had to go to the doctors for something shortly after we arrived here, before we had setup insurance. Now everytime I claim for something that remotely relates to this they need a questionnaire filled in.

I was speaking to someone recently who old me that he had to go into hospital to have an operation on his stomach, when they opened him up they realised that something else was also wrong (sorry can't remember whole details) however the private insurer then refused to pay for the operation because he hadn't obtained prior consent for the condition they had to fix when they opened him up! Cost him $10k.

My experience of business over here is this:

if I can rip you off I will, if you complain I will just shrug my shoulders and give the attitude 'what are you going to do about it'.

Stick with the public system, the population isn't very big my experience so far has been good (of hospitals) with not a long wait time.
 
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