In the event of a medical emergency, could you trust the medical care you would receive in a third-world country? Could you be safely transported back to the hospital of your choice in the United States?
Medical emergencies overseas happen more often than you’d think. What if an accident or sudden illness landed you in a hospital bed far from home? If you can’t sit in your assigned seat, commercial airlines aren’t obligated to let you board. Your premium credit card may not get you home, and you can’t always count on travel or health insurance.
U.S. Department of State policy dictates that if you become seriously ill, a U.S. consular officer can assist you in locating appropriate medical services, informing family and friends about your medical situation and transferring funds, but payment for medical and other expenses remains the responsibility of the traveler.
The State Department suggests that before going abroad, travelers verify what medical services their health insurance will cover overseas. If your health insurance policy provides coverage outside the United States, carry both your insurance policy identity card and a claim form. Although many health insurance companies will pay “customary and reasonable” hospital costs abroad, very few will pay for your medical evacuation-easily $10,000 or more-back to the United States.
The State Department Web site lists medical information resources at www.travel.state.gov/medical.htm. One I have found extremely helpful for the busy traveler is AirMed International LLC. As a critical-care nurse, I am impressed with AirMed’s professionalism, experience and dedication to the patients in its care during transport to the United States. AirMed’s mission is to provide a level of patient care in flight that rivals that of the finest American hospitals. It is the only U.S.-based medical air-transport organization with its own fleet of custom-designed medical jets.
If you’re an AirMed Traveler hospitalized more than 150 miles from where you live, AirMed International’s health-care air transportation team will fly you to a hospital anywhere you choose in a medically equipped jets. With one phone call, AirMed’s expert medical staff will handle your arrangements from hospital bed to hospital bed, including ground ambulance service on both ends and streamlined Customs clearance. AirMed’s specially trained medical teams consist of physicians, ICU nurses and respiratory therapists.
AirMed membership costs $225 a year for an individual, $325 for a family. For more information, call 800 356 2161 or visit www.airmed.aero.
TAP Air Portugal is adding 15 new weekly flights from the United States and Canada by summer 2020, a new record for the carrier of 71 weekly flights between North America and Portugal.
Alaska Airlines recently debuted its new Pixar-inspired, special-edition aircraft livery. On both sides of the Pixar-themed Boeing 737-800 aircraft, travelers spot recognizable faces from the Toy Story franchise, including Buzz Lightyear, Woody and Jessie. Rex the Tyrannosaurus appears on the boarding door and the little green aliens show up on the aircraft’s winglets.
Chef Philip Guardione used to spend his days and nights on Manhattan’s Prince and Spring streets, where his popular restaurants Piccola Cucina Enoteca and Piccola Cucina Osteria attract locals and tourists who love his Sicilian-inspired cuisine as well as the street scene in the vibrant SoHo neighborhood.
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The New InterContinental San Juan is officially reopening next month. The opening marks the completion of the property’s first major renovation in more than 20 years.
Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok completed renovations on its River Wing, concluding the hotel’s most extensive renovations in nearly 150 years. The River Wing redesign followed restorations of the hotel’s Authors’ and Garden wings. Newly renovated guestrooms and suites feature updated facilities, but maintain the hotel’s signature Thai elegance. The renovations also increased the number of suites in the wing, as well as enlarged guestrooms with views of the Chao Phraya River.
United Airlines’ environmentally friendly efforts lessen the impact on local U.S. communities.