When it comes to medical transportation, medical flights are not something that you often consider. In many cases, medical transportation can be covered through an ambulance ride. However, in cases where it's a life and death situation and the right medical care is hundreds of miles away, a medical flight is often the best option. Medical flights may also be needed if you are traveling or live in a remote area. Here are three things that you should know about medical flights.
The first thing that you should be aware of is that medical flights can be very expensive, especially if you are uninsured or your insurance does not cover the flight. Without health insurance, the cost of a domestic medical flight can be anywhere from $2,000 for a short trip to $50,000 for a longer flight. International flights can be extremely expensive. A medical flight from a different country can cost upwards of $200,000 depending on the distance traveled. Costs can also vary depending on what type of medical staff are needed on board the flight. Even with insurance covering part of the cost, medical flights can still cost tens of thousands of dollars. They are certainly worth it if it's a matter of life and death, but don't be caught off guard by the cost.
Your Insurance May or May Not Cover It
Another thing to consider when it comes to medical flights is that your insurance may or may not cover your flight. The coverage for a medical flight can vary from state to state and depending on your insurance policy. Many insurance companies will cover at least part of the cost of a medical flight if it is deemed medically necessary. However, prior approval will often be needed, and you will need to check to see if the flight company is within your insurance network. You may also be on the hook for your insurance deductible as well as co-insurance. It's important to check on your insurance's policy regarding medical flights.
There Are Membership Programs
Another thing that you should be aware of is that there are membership programs that can pay what your insurance company doesn't. These programs are with medical flight companies and are a great option in certain situations. One situation where this may be a great option is if you live in a remote area where transportation may be difficult in the case of a medical emergency. They cost as little as $65 per year. However, these programs only pay off if the medical flight that you need is being provided by the company whose membership program you participate in.
Medical flight is likely not something that you have spent a lot of time considering. Be aware that without insurance, medical flights can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Even with insurance, not all of the costs may be covered. Membership programs can offset some of the costs, but there are limitations.