Features February 2014 Issue

Comparing Medivac Services


Whether you should subscribe to one of these services depends on a number of factors, not the least of which is how much risk you are willing to take. Those who are coast-hopping in developed nations will likely be served fine by local rescue agencies. And some health insurance policies include evacuation coverage, but you’ll want to read all the fine print to make sure you know what exactly is covered and what isn’t. Companies providing global security as well as remote medical evacuations tend to distinguish themselves from those simply in the business of providing travel insurance. All advised taking a hard look at blanket travel policy provisions and restrictions.

“Look at your travel policy carefully,” Milne said. “Our service can begin in the middle of the ocean and doesn’t end until they get you home or to a hospital.”

Richards was equally emphatic. “We can deploy security personnel to you, evacuate you to a safe location, and bring you home,” he said.

Even if you decide to subscribe with one of these medical services, it is important to remember that there is no assurance that they can reach you quickly in some of the most remote regions of the world, such as the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Sailors looking to venture farther afield need to plan ahead by training in emergency medicine and learning how to operate the satellite communications aboard their sailboat so that a doctor back on land can tell them how to proceed.

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