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Medical Information for Americans Traveling Abroad


A note from The field of medicine is constantly evolving. As a result, parts of this article may be outdated. Please keep this in mind, and be sure to visit other parts of our site for more recent information!

If an American citizen becomes seriously ill or injured abroad, a U. S. consular officer can assist in locating appropriate medical services and informing family or friends. If necessary, a consular officer can also assist in the transfer of funds from the United States. However, payment of hospital and other expenses is the responsibility of the traveler.

Before going abroad, learn what medical services your health insurance will cover overseas. If your health insurance policy provides coverage outside the United States, REMEMBER to carry both your insurance policy identity card as proof of such insurance and a claim form. Although many health insurance companies will pay "customary and reasonable" hospital costs abroad, very few will pay for your medical evacuation back to the United States. Medical evacuation can easily cost $10,000 and up, depending on your location and medical condition.

The Social Security Medicare program does not provide coverage for hospital or medical costs outside the U.S.A.

Senior citizens may wish to contact the American Association of Retired Persons for information about foreign medical care coverage with Medicare supplement plans.

To facilitate identification in case of an accident, complete the information page on the inside of your passport providing the name, address and telephone number of someone to be contacted in an emergency.

A traveler going abroad with any preexisting medical problems should carry a letter from the attending physician, describing the medical condition and any prescription medications, including the generic name of prescribed drugs. Any medications being carried overseas should be left in their original containers and be clearly labeled. Travelers should check with the foreign embassy of the country they are visiting to make sure any required medications are not considered to be illegal narcotics.

A listing of addresses and telephone numbers of U.S. embassies and consulates abroad is contained in Key Officers of Foreign Service Posts. This publication may be obtained through the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402. Also available from the Government Printing Office is Health Information for International Travel by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This contains a global rundown of disease and immunization advice and other health guidance, including risks in particular countries. For additional health information, the CDC maintains the international travelers hotline at 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747), an automated faxback service at 1-888-CDC-FAXX (1-888-232-3299) and a home page on the Internet at

For detailed information on physicians abroad, the authoritative reference is The Official ABMS Directory of Board Certified Medical Specialists published for the American Board of Medical Specialists and its certifying member boards. This publication should be available in your local library. U.S. embassies and consulates abroad maintain lists of hospitals and physicians. Major credit card companies also can provide the names of local doctors and hospitals abroad.

Some countries require foreign visitors to have inoculations or medical tests before entering. Before traveling, check the latest entry requirements with the foreign embassy of the country to be visited.

Several private organizations will provide medical information and insurance for overseas travelers. Most charge a fee for this service. The following is provided FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY and in no way constitutes an endorsement, expressed or implied, by the Department of State.

Air Ambulance/Med-Evac

U.S.-Based Companies

Acadian Ambulance & Air Med Service, Inc.
Lafayette, LA
800-259-1111; 318-267-1111; 504-267-1111

Advanced Air Ambulance
Miami, FL
800-633-3590; 305-599-1100

AAA -- Air Ambulance America
Austin, TX
800-222-3564; 512-479-8000

Air Ambulance Care Flight International, Inc.
Clearwater, FL
800-282-6878; 1-727-530-7972 (international)

Air Ambulance Network
Sarasota, FL
800-327-1966; 813-934-3999

Air Ambulance Professionals
Fort Lauderdale, FL
800-752-4195; 954-491-0555

Phoenix, AZ

Air Medic -- Air Ambulance of America
Washington, PA
800-321-4444; 412-228-8000

AIRescue International
Van Nuys, CA
800-922-4911; 818-994-0911

Air Response
Orlando, FL
800-631-6565; 518-993-4153; 407-384-6100

Air Star International
Thermal, CA
877-570-0911; 800-991-2869

American Care, Inc.
San Diego, CA
800-941-2582; 619-486-8844

American Jet Air Medical
Houston, TX
888-435-9254; 713-641-9700

Critical Air Medicine
San Diego, CA
800-247-8326; 619-571-0482

Critical Care Medflight
Lawrenceville, GA
800-426-6557; 770-513-9148

Global Care/Medpass
Alpharetta, GA

Inflight Medical Services International Inc.
Naples, FL
800-432-4177; 941-594-0800

Intensive Air Ambulance
Morganville, NJ
800-543-3759; 908-946-1200

International SOS Assistance
Philadelphia, PA
800-523-8930; 215-244-1500
Also provides travel insurance services.

Life Jet
Baltimore, MD
877-LIFEJET; 877-543-3538

Med Escort International Inc.
Allentown, PA
800-255-7182; 610-791-3111

Medex Assistance Corporation
Timonium, MD
800-537-2029; 410-453-6300 (call collect)

Medjet International, Inc.
Birmingham, AL
800-356-2161; 205-592-4460

Medway Air Ambulance
Lawrenceville, GA
800-233-0655; 770-934-2080

Mercy Medical Airlift
Manassas, VA
800-296-1217; 703-361-1191
(Service area: Caribbean and part of Canada only. If necessary, will meet commercial incoming patients at JFK, Miami and other airports.)

National Air Ambulance
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
800-327-3710; 305-525-5538

Alexandria, VA
800-730-3170; 703-379-8645
Provides a range of travel medicine services.

Travel Care International, Inc.
Eagle River, WI
800-524-7633; 715-479-8881

Travelers Emergency Network
Durham, NC
800-275-4836; 800-ASK-4-TEN

Foreign-Based Companies

AEA International
U.S. Phone: 800-468-5232
Service worldwide, also provides travel insurance services

Austrian Air Ambulance
Vienna, Austria

Euro-Flite Ltd.
Helsinki International Airport
Vantaa, Finland

Johannesburg, South Africa

German Air Rescue (DRF)
Filderstadt, Germany

Jet Flite
Vantaa, Finland
358-0-822-766; 358-0-6996 (after hours)

Paris, France

Medical Rescue International
Auckland Park, South Africa

Tyrol Air Ambulance
Innsbruck, Austria

Travel Insurance Companies

Access America, Inc.
Richmond, VA

American International Group, Inc.
New York, NY

ASA, Inc.
International Health Insurance
Phoenix, AZ

Axa Assistance
Bethesda, MD

Seabury & Smith
Washington, DC
800-282-4495; 202-457-7707

Health Care Global
(also known as Medhelp or Wallach & Company or Healthcare Abroad)
Middleburg, VA
800-237-6615; 540-687-3166; 540-281-9500

Highway to Health
Fairfax, VA
(Also provides destination-based travel health information for cities worldwide.)

International Medical Group (IMG)
Indianapolis, IN
800-628-4664; 317-655-4500

Medex International
Timonium, MD

MultiNational Underwriters, Inc.
Indianapolis, IN

Mutual of Omaha
Tele-Trip Company
Omaha, NE

Petersen International Underwriters, Inc.
Valencia, CA

Omaha, NE

Travel Guard
Stevens Point, WI

Travel Insured International
E. Hartford, CT

Travel Insurance Services
InterMedical Division
Walnut Creek, CA

Tripguard Plus
Northridge, CA

Unicard Travel Association
Overland Park, KS

Universal Service and Assistance
Alexandria, VA
800-770-9111; 703-370-7800

Worldwide Assistance
Washington, DC
800-821-2828; 202-331-1609

Executive Medical Services

Health Quest Travel Inc.
Wexford, PA

World Clinic
Burlington, MA

A note from The field of medicine is constantly evolving. As a result, parts of this article may be outdated. Please keep this in mind, and be sure to visit other parts of our site for more recent information!

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This article was provided by U.S. Department of State.
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