For anyone who has looked into expat health insurance options, the word ‘wellness’ and ‘wellness cover’ is something which is likely to have come up. The chances are you will have simply dismissed this term, without really looking into what it means.
By way of summary, wellness is any care which is not essential, and would not be classed under the banner of an accident or illness. It may be care which is preventative in nature, or we could say pro-active as opposed to the reactive nature of normal medicine.
Insurance companies like to use the term ‘wellness benefit’ to describe any benefit falling under the above banner. The following paragraphs will look at some of these benefits in more detail.
- Annual health check ups.
Most hospitals in Thailand will have dedicated centers which run annual health checks for patients. The purpose of the annual check up is to make sure everything is in order, and if there are any problems, to catch them early and deal with issues before they become too serious. Whilst the cost of annual check ups varies from hospital to hospital you’ll be looking at around 5,000 THB at the lower end of the spectrum, and up to around 20,000 for a more comprehensive check. Expect to have blood and urine screening done, as well as an EKG and X Ray of your chest. Some hospitals also do Ultrasound examinations. Check ups are completed with a consultation from a doctor who will help to explain your results and recommend any further examinations if needed.
- Cancer screening
Cancer screening is normally included as part of an annual check up. However you may just wish to have cancer screening as stand alone tests. Cancer screening typically consists of blood tests to examine the levels of tumor markers in your blood and may include a combination of X rays and ultrasound. Tumor markers tested for include AFP which can indicate liver cancer, CEA which is a tumor marker for colon cancer and PSA which is a prostate cancer marker. For women testing also includes mammograms and PAP smears.
- Cardiovascular checks
Checking the health of your heart is an important step to prevent heart disease. Cardiovascular checks include blood tests as well as an EKG and may also include stress tests to see how your body responds to exercise. Again these are commonly part of an annual health check up but can be examined on a separate basis.
Vaccinations are classed by insurers as wellness as they are pre-emptive. If your policy does does cover vaccinations, be sure of checking the sub limits as they can be quiet low.
- Preventative dental
Regular trips to the dentist to keep on top of your oral health are a wellness benefit which some insurers provide, typically under dental insurance benefit. By having a 6 monthly check up and clean, you can be sure that any new tooth decay will be spotted by the dentist. Early treatment will prevent serious dental issues and potentially high bills.
- Sight and hearing test
As we get older all parts of our body degenerate. Sight checks ensure your eyes are in good shape and allow you to check for cataracts and other potential issues. Hearing can also suffer as we age so hearing check ups allow us to make sure all is well.
If you want a health insurance plan which covers wellness, contact us and we will help you find the best solution to meet your needs!