Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Pre-Existing Condition Lesson Learned

The last week of March we had big plans to visit with family and friends in the U.S.  We notified everyone we wanted to be sure to husband's parents, some siblings, dear friends we haven't seen in years, cousins, and most importantly our Japanese daughter, an international student who lived with us for 3 years, who was leaving the country that week.

The boys were thrilled to see Grandma, Grandpa and their cousins, who we really only see maybe 1 or 2 times a year.  We had our bags packed, movies, music, and activities picked out for our long drive down.  We were set to go!

Three hours before departure we received some discouraging news.  My husband's travel insurance, which we previously checked to make sure we had coverage, notified us that they would NOT cover any costs relating to our son's "pre-existing" epilepsy if he had any changes to his drugs in the last 3 weeks.

We had just lowered one of his meds that week!!!!!! In fact, there's almost constant changes to his med schedule!!

Desperately we called several different travel insurance companies, looking for someone who might give us pre-existing condition insurance.  We had NO LUCK!!

The best we could find was a company willing to give us the insurance we were looking for, BUT he could not have had any drug changes in the last 7 days.  Again, we didn't qualify.  :(

The insurance agent also stated another condition that would limit our coverage, "if he has had any symptoms in the last 7 days from his undiagnosed condition".  Well, we know he has Refractory Epilepsy but is undiagnosed as to the cause.  I'm sure that little loophole may prevent us from travelling out of country for quite some time.

I feel a little naive about the whole situation.  I guess we've found our insurance extremely dependable at home, and didn't really ask enough questions for travelling across the border.  I shouldn't have been surprised, but it was still disappointing to call our loved ones and cancel our plans.

What did we do instead???
We did not want to make the scenario any more depressing, so we had some family fun close to home!!  Geocaching, hiking, waterfalls, fire pit picnic, dinosaurs here we come!

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