Mondial Assistance UK is putting the spotlight on the soaring cost of simple medical treatments abroad, as it reveals that something as common as ear pain from swimming could cost as much as £285, whilst a bite or a sting from a sea creature could be an additional £260.

Even the simplest problems can see medical attention run into hundreds of pounds, such as conjunctivitis costing more than £180, on average, with a headache costing £580 to treat. In turn, the company is urging travel professionals selling insurance to draw greater customer attention to policy excesses and breadth of cover, highlighting the need for adequate financial protection against the rising cost of medical assistance.  


The company's corporate, travel and health director, Ben Smart, said: “The cost of prescriptions and minor medical treatments can cost a lot more abroad than in the UK, giving travellers a nasty surprise when they get the bill. Illnesses or problems which can ordinarily be treated with over the counter medication for less than £10 in the UK, may require a doctor’s appointment and a costly prescription in another country.

“People who take mild medications with them on holiday for pre-existing medical conditions such as migraines or hayfever should be extra careful.  If they forget to pack them it could be a very costly mistake as medical costs incurred for pre-existing conditions are rarely covered by travel insurers. For example, asthma sufferers should ensure they pack a duplicate prescription and keep it separately in case the original is lost or mislaid.  A replacement prescription could cost as much as £950.”

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