To want cosmetic surgery insurance

(24 Posts)
jumpercake Sun 28-Feb-16 12:42:20

For my sister? Posting in aibu for traffic, please do ask if this needs to be moved.
Basically my sister has decided to travel to America for cosmetic surgery. She cannot be convinced to do it in the UK. I have tried to help her find special insurance to cover her trip, but no one we've found covers the US for this kind of trip.
Can anyone help point me in the direction of someone who offers cover? I'm full of anxiety at the thought she travels without insurance, just in case something goes wrong.

VoldysGoneMouldy Sun 28-Feb-16 12:48:36

It's her choice. It's stupid, yes, but since when has that ever stopped people? If she's travelling somewhere else, and is sure that's where she's going to go for it, and you can't find insurance for it... That's all there is to it really.

specialsubject Sun 28-Feb-16 12:50:43

....as long as she is fully aware of the colossal bill she could rack up. To be in the USA without insurance as a tourist is insane.

make it clear that you do not have the money to rescue her, or her corpse if the worst happens and that you would have no choice but to leave her to rot.

most unlikely but that is the worst case, and it is not impossible. Doesn't have to be anything to do with the surgery; anyone can get hit by a car, mugged, have a heart attack etc etc.

BitterAndOnlySlightlyTwisted Sun 28-Feb-16 12:59:20

What sort of "special insurance"? Surely, the normal kind of travel insurance would cover her for about a million pounds-worth of medical costs.

Are you hoping that you can find some sort of cover in case the actual surgery turns out to be unsatisfactory in some way? I'm not sure that's possible. The best way to ensure a favourable outcome is to vet the surgeon's accreditation and be confident that the desired outcome is reasonable under the circumstances.

I don't know whether cosmetic surgery is similar in the US to in the UK. Here, any surgeon can carry out cosmetic surgery; they don't need to have undergone any specialist training or accreditation, or have much direct experience to carry out most procedures.

specialsubject Sun 28-Feb-16 13:05:35

I think you'll find that all standard travel insurance policies specifically exclude travelling for medical procedures. That invalidates the WHOLE policy, so my scenarios above apply.

infife Sun 28-Feb-16 13:08:49

"What sort of "special insurance"? Surely, the normal kind of travel insurance would cover her for about a million pounds-worth of medical costs."

Every travel insurance policy I've ever had - and I'm a bit of a tart, so change annual policies every year, has had specific exclusions against medical tourism. Only non-scheduled emergency procedures are covered.

caroldecker Sun 28-Feb-16 13:18:55

I can't imagine any sort of legitimate cosmetic surgery is cheaper in the US - I think that would be my key worry.

jumpercake Sun 28-Feb-16 13:20:40

Hi, yes those are my concerns too- she has regular insurance but it doesn't cover anything to do with her surgery.
She has said that she wants to go to America as she has researched the surgeon and he is the best she can find, but things can still go wrong. She thinks I'm catastrophising, but I'm just trying to prepare her for all eventualities.

specialsubject Sun 28-Feb-16 13:27:40

'researched' - presumably 'read a bit on the internet'

the scenarios I outline would indeed be catastrophic, but are not impossible - that's why you need valid travel insurance whenever you leave the UK. The sums involve will bankrupt her and her family. Goodbye houses, savings, pensions and so on.

is it worth it for whatever she wants done?

perhaps make her sign the list I gave, saying that she agrees to be left to rot if any of those things happen. No legal force but might possibly make her think.

BitterAndOnlySlightlyTwisted Sun 28-Feb-16 13:39:27

"Every travel insurance policy I've ever had - and I'm a bit of a tart, so change annual policies every year, has had specific exclusions against medical tourism. Only non-scheduled emergency procedures are covered."

Crikey! I had no idea. That's a pretty compelling reason not to have this or any other elective procedure done abroad.

OP, your sister needs to think again. How you encourage her to do that, I don't know. Does she realise the risks she could be taking? Does she know that the best plastic surgeons in the world practice here in the UK? The most expensive or the most famous doesn't necessarily translate to the best.

specialsubject Sun 28-Feb-16 13:47:37

of course we don't know what the procedure is, but judging by how rough most hollywood slebs look I wouldn't get anything done there!!

jumpercake Sun 28-Feb-16 14:14:19

I've tried to get her to reconsider- she's not having any of it. We've pretty much fallen out over this as well- there are more reasons than the above why she shouldn't be pursuing this, especially at this moment in time. But she's adamant, and the more I try to reason, the more she closes off. I suppose I just have to hope for the best, and God forbid anything bad happens.

JolseBaby Sun 28-Feb-16 15:49:26

Most travel insurance policies specifically exclude travelling for treatment - and they usually exclude cosmetic surgery.

Getting ill in the US without insurance is no joke - you're looking at $25 for a paracetamol tablet, so try and imagine how much emergency treatment would be if something went wrong. She would be looking at tens of thousands of dollars. What would she do if she didn't need to be an in-patient at hospital but still needed ongoing treatment and was therefore unfit to fly? How would she pay her accommodation and travel costs if she missed her original flight home?

If you have tried to warn her then that's as much as you can do, but I think she's bloody daft.

PortobelloRoad Sun 28-Feb-16 16:02:25

Oh she needs insurance 100%. My DS's ex girlfriend got caught in America with no health insurance, she had a minor accident and the bill was crazy.

Some of the best surgeons in the world are in London, Rajiv Grover (I've had surgery with him) is widely considered one of the best of the best. There are others too, such as Norman Waterhouse, check out the tatler good doctor guide for others. Don't go with Mya or whatever, go direct to surgeon.

I've had 3 different procedures and with one of them I got a post op infection. I went to a wonderful surgeon, did absolutely everything right, had the house deep cleaned before hand and everything. I still got a infection. Nothing is fool proof.

Also in America they are a lot more lax about qualifications in some states, particularly California.

Why will she not be convinced about having it in the UK.

LifeofI Sun 28-Feb-16 16:09:28

op what is she having done that she has to go to the US, If you dont mind me asking.

HopelesslydevotedtoGu Sun 28-Feb-16 16:18:44

Anyone can suffer complications after surgery, even with the best surgeon. Infection, bleeding, blood clots. The bill for anything will be much higher than she expects.

Also if something completely unrelated happens after her surgery- eg being in a car accident- her travel insurer will try and wheedle out of paying for that as much as possible. Eg "you wouldn't have bled so much if you hadn't had that blood thinning injection with your surgery, so we won't pay for your treatment for that'.

I bet she won't listen to you though. Try turning it back to her- how would she pay a 50k bill for a complication?

Or find some good cosmetic surgeons in London and forward her the details.

Or can she ask her us clinic to recommend a medical insurance policy? Such a policy probably does exist, and it probably extremely expensive, which will hopefully make her think again. Or maybe the surgeon will refuse to treat her without insurance- it would be a headache for him if she couldn't pay her bill, or refused essential treatment for a complication on basis of cost.

shinynewusername Sun 28-Feb-16 16:25:02

No doubt she will expect the NHS to sort it out for free if she develops complications hmm

acasualobserver Sun 28-Feb-16 16:29:36

Perhaps she is relying on being able to get back to the UK and letting the NHS pick up the tab for sorting out any problems.

acasualobserver Sun 28-Feb-16 16:30:53

Slow typist - x post!

DamnCommandments Sun 28-Feb-16 16:36:57

You can't insure against stupidity.

This is tough on you, because you're not the one being an idiot... flowers

jumpercake Sun 28-Feb-16 17:14:27

Things is, she doesn't have to have the surgery in the US- it's a cosmetic procedure which she can have done in the UK, but she has said that all of the research she has done has led to this particular US based surgeon being the best.
However as above posters have said, having a great surgeon doesn't mean complications can't happen. I've tried to reason with her again today, spelling out potential cost implications etc, but she's completely glossing over it, saying she doesn't trust any UK surgeons to give her desired results, but ignoring the potential ruinous costs in event of complications in thr US. Arghhhh!

Sallyingforth Sun 28-Feb-16 18:18:05

Your sister is crazy!
Show her this thread, and make it clear that you can't bail her out when it all goes wrong.

caroldecker Sun 28-Feb-16 20:44:23

Will they even do it if she has no evidence of money/insurance to pay for complications? There is insurance available, but read the concerns in this article www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/bills/article-1599560/Cosmetic-surgery-tourism.html

Potatoface2 Sun 28-Feb-16 21:15:35

what if she has major problems post op in the states.....she wont e able to just fly back for the NHS to sort it out....she may not be able to fly at all....she will need a Fit to Fly form from her surgeon, as an airline will refuse her as a passenger if she is poorly.....she sounds really naive....look forward to seeing a GO FUND ME page when she needs to get back to the uk quickly on an air ambulance!

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