Millions of people visit the US every year. Some people visit the country for tourism purposes; others visit friends and family members. Either way, among the excitement of travel, people tend to forget that medical expenses in the US are costly. Even though you may not require any medical attention during your travels, having health insurance for visitors gives you security and protection in case something happens.
Additionally, if you tend to get sick often when you travel, or you are over 50 and have a pre-existing condition, you must have a good health insurance plan for your visit to the US.
What Is Atlas America Insurance?
Atlas America is a health insurance plan available to foreign citizens who want to visit the US for various purposes, (visit family and friends, tourism, study, etc). The Atlas America insurance plan is underwritten by Lloyd’s, one of the world’s best insurance and reinsurance markets. It covers many areas, from medical needs to emergency travel coverage.
Should I Purchase Atlas America Insurance Plan?
Here is a list of some of the benefits and drawbacks of the Atlas America insurance plan:
|Comprehensive plan||Maximum coverage for persons over 80 is $10,000|
|Covers acute onset issues of pre-existing conditions||Acute onset of pre-existing conditions is not covered for persons over 80 years|
|Renewable and cancellable||Only acute onset of a pre-existing condition is covered and not the actual pre-existing condition.|
|Maximum coverage: $2,000,000|
|100% coverage within the PPO network|
|50% coverage for the first $5,000 outside of the PPO network, then %100|
|Deductible up to $5,000|
How Do I Purchase Atlas America Insurance?
One of the best and the most hassle-free way to purchase your Atlas America insurance is via a reputable insurance broker such as Insubuy. An insurance broker will offer you the best information regarding your policy and display all the benefits. Plus, since Atlas America is so well known, several insurance brokerage companies offer it— make sure you choose a reliable company.
When is the Best Time to Purchase the Atlas America Insurance Plan?
You can purchase the plan whenever you want and set the date you need the plan to be active. For example, you can buy the plan at the beginning of the year and place the active date when you plan to travel to the US.
How Long Does Atlas America Offer Coverage For?
Atlas America can be valid for a short time (5 days) or long-term (365 days), depending on how long you plan on staying in the US. The policy is renewable, so you can just repurchase the plan when it expires.
Atlas America Insurance Coverage
Here are some of the main areas that Atlas Americ insurance covers:
- Hospitalization and outpatient treatment. Your Atlas America insurance covers hospitalization, including intensive care unit, and other medical expenses. However, you have to check whether your medical costs are covered up to the overall maximum limit; some may only be covered up to 50%.
- Emergency medical evacuation and repatriation. If you find yourself in an emergency, requiring evacuation, either to another hospital, another country, or back to your home state, your Atlas insurance will usually cover the costs.
- Acute onset of pre-existing conditions. If you have a sudden illness that happens suddenly due to a pre-existing medical issue, your insurance will most likely cover it. For example, if you have sudden high blood sugar due to diabetes and you visit a hospital, you can get reimbursed for the costs.
In addition, Atlas America also offers emergency travel benefits such as
- Repatriation, including the return of remains
- Return of a minor child
- Natural disaster emergency accommodation
- Emergency quarantine indemnity
- Trip interruption, and travel delay.
- Lost or stolen items.
- Political evacuation.
- Accidental death and dismemberment.
- Personal liability.
Does Atlas America Insurance Cover Pre-Existing Conditions?
In most cases, Atlas America does not cover treatment for pre-existing conditions, but it does cover the acute onset of a pre-existing condition. What this means is that your pre-existing condition must have manifested itself suddenly and without warning, causing you to seek treatment, consultations, prescription medicine, or medical advice during your trip. A condition is considered “pre-existing” if you have had to seek treatment for it in the two years immediately preceding the date your insurance becomes effective.
To receive coverage for the acute onset of your pre-existing condition, you must seek treatment within 24 hours.
Atlas America will NOT cover your acute onset medical issue due to a pre-existing condition in the following cases:
- The acute onset issue happens before your insurance certificate becomes valid.
- Your pre-existing condition is one of the following:
- A chronic or congenital condition.
- A complication due to a chronic or congenital condition.
- A condition that worsened as time went by.
- Your medical expenses are related to scheduled treatments before your insurance certificate becomes active.
Atlas America Insurance Cost
The cost of your Atlas America insurance policy will depend on several factors such as your age, the number of people covered by the plan, the length of your stay in the US, the maximum policy, and the deductible, and what additional benefits you want. For example, a basic plan (without accidental death and dismemberment, crisis response, personal liability coverage, and other benefits) for two people aged 50, for an eight-day period, with a maximum policy of $50,000, and a $250 deductible costs $68, i.e., $34 per person.
How Does Atlas America Insurance Work?
Here is a summary of how Atlas America insurance plan works:
- You plan to visit the US.
- You buy the insurance plan.
- You need medical attention.
- Your insurance covers you.
You Plan To Visit The US
You may be planning to go to the United States for several reasons. For example, you have children who live there and want to visit them, or you will be going on an exchange program with a J-1 visa. Either way, it’s important to have a good health insurance plan since healthcare in the US is very expensive. Altas America plan will cover you in medical situations lowering the costs you have to pay out of pocket significantly.
You Buy The Insurance Plan
Once you have planned out your trip, i.e., decided when you will go and how long you will stay, it’s time to buy your Atlas America insurance plan. You can purchase the plan months before traveling to the US and set a date when your insurance becomes valid.
You Need Medical Attention
While you are in the US, you may need medical attention. For example, you may have been injured, sick, or experienced more serious medical problems, like a heart attack. For any of these cases, you require medical attention at a hospital in the US. Healthcare services in America are costly; only one night in the hospital can go up to $2,500, not to mention other costs related to your treatment.
Your Insurance Covers You
After receiving the medical care, you have to pay for the services. If you purchased the Atlas America health insurance plan, most of your medical costs would be covered by your policy. Plus, with Atlas America, you have access to hospitals and medical providers in the PPO (preferred provider organization) network. A PPO network is a healthcare management group in the US. Several hospitals, doctors, and other healthcare providers in the PPO have connected with an insurance company to allow reduced rates for insurance holders.
Before you travel, you can check which hospitals and healthcare centers close to you are in the PPO network to get lower rates, and your healthcare provider can charge the insurance company directly. You can still visit healthcare centers outside of the PPO network, but you have higher rates, and you may be required to pay for the medical services on your own initially and then file an insurance claim to get reimbursed.
Atlas America Cancellation and Refund Policy
You can cancel your plan anytime. If you do so before the effective date on your certificate, you’re not required to pay a cancellation fee and receive a full refund. However, if you cancel the plan after the effective date, you have to pay a $25 fee and receive a pro-rated refund if you haven’t filed a claim since your insurance became active.