UK insurance firms help record number of sick travellers

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Car Rental News - 19/07/2010


British insurers paid out £5.3 million per week helping Brits who got ill on holiday

New figures from an industry body show the number of UK travellers being helped by travel insurance firms set a new record as the cost of medical treatment while on holiday abroad also hit a record high. The Association of British Insurers (ABI) said insurers are paying out £5.3 million each week to cover emergency medical treatment for UK travellers who get sick on holiday.

Insurance taken out via providers like last year paid out a whopping £274 million to cover the medical costs of British travellers needing emergency medical attention abroad. Over the last five years, the cost of covering the medical expenses of British holidaymakers rose by more than 270 per cent. Over the same period, there was a 300-per-cent increase in the number of claims by Brits for emergency medical treatment overseas. Five years ago, a third of the total cost for claims paid out by travel insurers accounted for medical treatment. That has gone up to nearly two-thirds.

The most frequent ailments suffered by Brits abroad were ear infections, stomach problems, allergies and heart trouble. Some of the claims paid out by UK travel insurers include a £49,000 claim for coronary artery bypass and emergency travel back to the UK for a Brit who fell ill in the USA, and a £16,500 claim for treating back injuries plus extra costs for both hotels and ambulances for a husband and wife who were both injured in different incidents during the same trip.

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