N49WA
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Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:14 am

My sister in on vacation in Milan. A couple of days ago she slipped and fell in the hotel and broke her leg. She now has a full, ankle to hip cast on. She called the airline to see if there was anything she should know regarding travelling with a cast back to Los Angeles and was bluntly told that "they could not accommodate her". The doctor over there has cleared her to fly.

Any suggestions as to where she can get travel advice/assistance for getting home? She is panicky about being stuck overseas until the cast comes off. Is her health insurance responsible for getting her back? She can't afford an air ambulance from Italy to California.
Thanks in advance.

Richard
N49WA
If it's new and quiet, I don't want to fly it.
 
vegas005
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:27 am

From BA website. I am sure other airlines will have similar policies.

Other conditions
Broken bone If you have broken a bone and have been fitted with a plaster cast:
you cannot fly for 24 hours (if your flight is less than two hours)
you cannot fly for 48 hours (on longer flights)
if you have a full leg cast, you will be accepted into our First and Club World cabins. We will also accept full leg casts in our Euro Traveller and Domestic cabins provided you purchase an extra seat for elevation purposes (subject to availability of moveable armrests).
All these requirements can be lifted in certain circumstances following discussions with the PMCU.

Please contact our reservations department on 0844 493 0787 to make provisions.

Any queries please contact Passenger Medical Clearance Unit on 020 8738 5444.
 
Tobias2702
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:36 am

Quoting N49WA (Thread starter):
She now has a full, ankle to hip cast on.

Even though she has been cleared to fly, there is a high risk of getting a deep vene thrombose on long flights. As cabin air pressure is below normal ground pressure, there may be increased swelling under the cast. So maybe your sister just don't want to take that risk and fly at all.

Quoting N49WA (Thread starter):
Is her health insurance responsible for getting her back?

That obviously depends on her contract's terms and conditions.

edit: there is an old thread on this subject : Flying With A Broken Leg (by FlyingNanook Dec 11 2005 in Civil Aviation)

Quoting N49WA (Thread starter):
was bluntly told that "they could not accommodate her

She will need a wheelchair and a seat in a bulkhead row (maybe even several ones). As the total number of disabled pax onboard as well as bulkhead seats is limited, it may be that the airline cannot accomodate her. She might think about upgrading to higher class (still cheaper than having private transport back to the US).

Hope she will recover well.

Tobias

[Edited 2010-01-28 03:37:23]
PA, AF, UK, BA, AB, DL, LH, FR, BD, A3, EZY, DY //// A319/320/346, B733/735/73G/738/744/763, AT4, 146, CR2, DH4
 
N49WA
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:52 am

Many thanks for the replies so far. Good info to follow up on. I guess my insurance query should have been: is it customary for health insurance to have a provision for getting a person back home ?

[Edited 2010-01-28 03:54:42]
If it's new and quiet, I don't want to fly it.
 
AustrianZRH
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 12:02 pm



Quoting N49WA (Reply 3):
is it customary for health insurance to have a provision for getting a person back home ?

Again, it depends on the insurance. The basic, normal health insurances normally do not cover repatriation transports, the more expensive high end contracts sometimes do. I guess the biggest problem will be to fit into an economy seat without being able to bend the knees. So she'll probably have to upgrade to J class or buy one or two extra seats in Y.
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PanHAM
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 12:10 pm

Check if your sister paid the ticket with a gold or similar credit card. Very often insurances which cover against such risks are included in upgrade credit cards. Overseas health insurance should be covered, the costs are usually not that much. but this is, of course wise-cracking. after a mis-hap. Most important, the US consulate in Milan is there to help citizens.
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N49WA
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 4:13 pm

My heartfelt thanks to all who replied. The airline has arranged for a bank of seats for her at no extra charge, so all is well. It's great to know that the a.net community has people so willing to help out.

Richard
N49WA
If it's new and quiet, I don't want to fly it.
 
UALWN
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 4:35 pm



Quoting N49WA (Reply 6):
The airline has arranged for a bank of seats for her at no extra charge, so all is well.

It's great to see everything is well. I wonder if you could let us know which airline is she flying.
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frmrCapCadet
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 5:29 pm

Travel insurance for this sort of thing is often available (in my case through my pension), and it fairly inexpensive. It does not include incidents caused by 'dangerous' activities - mountain climbing, scuba diving, see individual policies. It includes assistance (but not the cost) of replacing medications, treatment (limited) abroad, repatriation costs. The maximum is about $25K. Recommended is about $75K as air transport can be very expensive.
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blueflyer
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Thu Jan 28, 2010 7:24 pm

In addition to comprehensive travel insurance, several companies sell medical-transportation only insurance. They're available either on an annual or per-trip basis and cover the cost of appropriate transport from a foreign hospital to any US hospital, whether that involves getting a business-class seat for extra leg room or a medically-equipped private jet. Some throw in transportation within the US if you're hospitalized more than x miles away from home or if you need to be moved from one hospital to another to receive specialized care.
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N49WA
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Fri Jan 29, 2010 4:04 am



Quoting FrmrCAPCADET (Reply 8):
FrmrCAPCADET From United States of America, joined May 2008, 682 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted Thu Jan 28 2010 09:29:26 your local time (10 hours 31 minutes 16 secs ago) and read 193 times:



Quoting BlueFlyer (Reply 9):

Excellent info on insurance. I'm going to read up on it before my next flight.

The airline is Continental. Thanks again to all.


Richard
N49WA
If it's new and quiet, I don't want to fly it.
 
AFGMEL
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Fri Jan 29, 2010 10:31 pm

Reading this thread it seems as if Americans don't know about travel insurance. Is this so? You may be interested to hear that travelling to the US is more expensive than other places, particularly Europe. We have bi-lateral agreements with many countries for medical. Getting sick in the US with no travel insurance could cost 100s of 1000s potentially. I wouldn't dream of going without.

I know somebody personally who was skiing in Aspen and got taken out by another skier. She spent weeks in ICU and months recuperating, before she could fly home. Cost her $100,000+ - and this was more than 20 years ago as she had no insurance.

Getting sick overseas could make you lose your house. Beware people.
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N49WA
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Mon Feb 01, 2010 2:31 am

Very good advice. This incident with my sister has make me rethink my "It won't happen to me" attitude. Thanks for the post.


Richard
N49WA
If it's new and quiet, I don't want to fly it.
 
airtrainer
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Mon Feb 01, 2010 5:56 am



Quoting N49WA (Reply 12):
This incident with my sister has make me rethink my "It won't happen to me" attitude.

This is exactly what I was thinking. I'm also glad to read that everything finally went ok for your sister. All the best for her recovery.
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coachclass
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RE: Advice Needed - Injured/stranded Overseas

Tue Feb 09, 2010 3:50 am

For those of us on Medicare, no health insurance coverage outside the USA.

I'm told some countries require proof of coverage. Insurance seems to run $35-59 and up for about two weeks. There are several web sites that talk about the what to look for specifically when buying travel insurance.

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