product launch | Sanitas health plan complete breaks new boundaries by limiting country cover to britain and spain only
Bupa International has teamed up with Spanish company Sanitas to create a new health insurance product to suit the lifestyles of the one million expatriates who live in Spain.
Sanitas Health Plan Complete is designed to bridge the gap between Bupa International, which specialises in global medical insurance cover and Sanitas, which provides medical insurance cover mainly in Spain. It is the first product to give cover for only two countries, which helps to keep the cost of the policy competitive in comparison to other policies offering cover all over Europe.
Many expatriates in Spain divide their time between a Spanish property and their home country. Previously, local policies only offered cover in Spain or global cover that was normally in excess of their requirement.
There are around one million properties in Spain owned by non-Spanish nationals, 50% of these are owned by Britons and 28% owned by Germans. People from any part of the world can join Sanitas Health Plan Complete so long as they select a second European country for cover in addition to Spain.
Sanitas will pay all medical bills for treatment in Spain within the company"s approved network of 20,000 doctors and 520 hospitals and clinics. The network covers the entire Spanish mainland, islands and Gibraltar. Bupa International will pay 90% of all medical bills for treatment in the second European country and the patient pays the remaining ten per cent. Members will be issued with a list of approved hospitals in both countries, together with details of doctors in Spain who speak English, German or another language.
Bupa International customers will receive a swipe card containing their details that will allow them to access treatment without having to pay for it at point of delivery in Spain. All of their documentation will be in English and they will have access to a healthcare helpline operated by English speakers from Sanitas while in Spain.
In order to facilitate treatment, new technology has been put in place so information can be updated and transferred between Bupa International in the UK and Sanitas in Spain to ensure quick access to medical services in either country.
There are also benefits available within the Spanish network, including a child health programme, colorectal cancer prevention programme, coronary risk prevention programme, family planning, contraceptive pills, IUD implant, sterilisation, dental services, vasectomy, six months of speech therapy and five sessions of chiropody per year.
Bill Ward, managing director of Bupa International, said: "Our customers told us that they wanted insurance products that matched their local needs. In Spain, this meant taking the best of our global infrastructure and combining it with local knowledge. We also had to ensure the price reflected specific Spanish and home country risks."
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