Health & Protection in South Korea

 

 

Expats know how hard it is to earn money abroad. Aside from the fact that you will be away from your loved ones, there is the fear of stepping into an unfamiliar place that is mostly caused by culture shock and language barrier. Some will be granted “hardship” allowances to compensate in their relocation package.

While you keep your head busy on the relocation and getting back to work, it is important not to forget securing a good level of protection with a new set of insurance at your destination country. Let us walk you through on how you can protect your health and secure your properties as you strive for your future in South Korea.

Getting Insurance 

If you are going to South Korea under a relocation program, you should ensure that your employer provides you with adequate benefit. It should be discussed with you during contract signing by your boss or a representative from the Human Resources office of your company. Make sure to understand what it means for South Korea access to care, what is the network included in the plan and what are the levels of benefits. Check if some of your colleagues at the Korean office are taking add-ons or how are they organizing their protection.

All legally operating insurance companies in South Korea are under the supervision of the Financial Services Commission. It is the sector of the local government that you can contact in case your provider is not complying with your agreement or makes any sudden changes in your policy.

There are also several international and local companies in South Korea that provide different types of insurance products. Keep in mind that choosing the right company is the most important part the process so take your in time and ask questions that’ll help you decide which one can meet your needs. You can consider an international broker of medical care such as AXA PPP International or a local company such as Dongbu Insurance Company, who is the largest non-life insurer in South Korea.

"In my experience, health insurance does not exist, and you simply pay when you see a doctor. In South Korea, however, you get health insurance and doctors are very professional and prices are very cheap for both consultations and medication."- Linda, Expat in South Korea

Importance of Insurance

South Korea is one of the highest industrialised countries in Asia that’s why pollution is now becoming a major health risk. Always wear a face mask during spring because of the respiratory problems that can be caused by of the ‘Yellow Dust’ (dust from China combined with local industrialised pollutants). Malaria is also a common illness especially in the rural areas so make sure to put insect repellent, and your vaccines are up to date before relocating.

Just the thought of being in a foreign country should be enough of a reason for all expats to protect and ensure themselves. Contrary to what most people think, health care can be used even if you are not in an emergency situation. Your policy can cover services or preventive treatments that’ll help you monitor and maintain good health. Vaccinations, routine check-ups, physical exams, laboratory tests and even prescriptions to boost your immune system can be provided by your insurer. So once you sign up for insurance, make sure to read your contract carefully so that you’ll know the full scope and limitations of your coverage.

Local Insurance in South Korea

You will be pleased to know that both the public and private sectors in South Korea are modernised and efficient where hospitals are manned with medical practitioners whose services are affordable. Expats who are holders of the ARC or Alien Registration Card are required to contribute to the compulsory social insurance scheme called National Health Insurance. Having coverage from the NHI means that you and even your dependents will be entitled to the free or subsidised medical services that are funded by the government. You will find most English-speaking doctors and staff in hospitals in the main cities especially in the capital, Seoul. In the case of emergency, expats should dial 119 for ambulance response.

Explore all the opportunities from various products and ask around what others like you are subscribing to. International Private Medical Insurance is often an option that fits the globally mobile employee or “global nomad” needs as it is ticking the boxes for geographical coverage, level of cover and portability (between employer, between countries).

 

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Expat Insurance Services in South Korea