20 Dec Bureaucracy…part 3 Is that covered?
We contact three different private insurance brokers, in hopes of finding an affordable private insurance. Its coverage has to be compatible to the government run insurance, but it has to be available to foreigners, who are seeking a long term visa. Again, it sounds like an easy task, the reality looks very different. Every one of the brokers and private insurance sellers tells us, that legally, they are only allowed to sell us another international travel insurance.
We look the policies over and pick a few out, that seem to have the best coverage and are affordable at the same time. I make another appointment with Herr ‘S’ at the immigrations office.
Armed with the info of a few insurance policies, I head up the hill to the office.
Herr ‘S’ does not seem to be impressed with what we found. In his usual monotone, emotionless manner he states: “Those are travel insurances! I can’t believe they are able to provide good coverage with premiums that low. Let me see what’s all covered.”
I inform him that the government run insurance, if we would have been able to buy it, would have had an even lower premium, and gave him the exact Euro amount…it helps to do your homework, sometimes. 🙂
I also let him know, with a big smile, that these policies are all that the private insurances are legally allowed to sell me, and that I am very happy to give him the phone number of the insurance brokers, should he have any questions about the policies.
He looks over the policy, that I handed him and starts going over every single item:
“Hospital stay..covered, medical treatments…covered when medically necessary, glasses are only covered up to 100 Euros!?”
“Well, I guess, we’d have to buy cheap ones, or pay them out of pocket, but luckily, our eyesight is good.” I answer, while wondering: really, this is the most important item to look for in health insurance?
“Dentures are only covered 60%, unless you lost your teeth in an accident!” He continues to criticize.
“Well, that would be our problem, whether we want to run around with rotten teeth, or want to get them fixed.” Thinking to myself, that this is actually better coverage, than what we had in the states.
“Medications…? What do medications fall under?” he asks.
I look at the policy, it does not specifically mention medication, honestly I tell him:” I have no clue.”
By now I am getting a little frustrated with the whole situation. Ron and I are healthy individuals and have never taken medications. Since I really have not learned how to keep my mouth shut, I add: “Herr ‘S’, it really does not matter whether you like this policy or not. It does not change the fact that this is the ONLY kind of policy I am legally allowed to buy. So if you do not plan on accepting it, then please just let me know, because then it is time for us to get airplane tickets back to the US, before our 90 days are up.”
Hm, note-to-self…next time bring Ron, I usually hold back a little more when he is around.
After a while, he looks at me and says unimpressed: “Can you call the insurance and ask whether medications are covered? You can use the phone right here?”
Really? Didn’t you just hear what I said?
“Sure.” I mutter.
The insurance lady was very nice, informative, and ensured me, that all medications are covered, as long as they were prescribed by a physician.
“Any more questions?” She asks.
I look at Herr ‘S’ and ask: “Any more questions?”
“No.” he says.
I hang up and after a moment of silence he finally looks up from reading the policy again.
“Still, I just find it unbelievable that you are able to get that kind of coverage for that low premium!” he repeats himself.
Really, is that what it’s all about? The low premium!? Sounds like you are overpaying on your health insurance, maybe it’s just time to find a new policy for yourself!
“So does that mean, I can go ahead and buy this insurance to get our year visa and permission to stay?” I ask.
“Sure, just leave me a copy of the policy, so I have some reference for future cases.”
“No problem, keep all the policy copies!”
Now, just pay the fee for the visa and we are official!