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Even for seasoned travellers, the idea of spending time in a hospital abroad can seem terrifying. Let’s face it; many countries deal with hospitalization in different ways. Healthcare services in your chosen destination may be nowhere near what you’d expect at home. In some parts of the world, hospitals even struggle to get essential medication. And, quality of healthcare aside, no one wants to spend time in a hospital during time away. It’s hardly a good way to get a feel for a place.

It’s no wonder, then, that the majority of us do what we can to keep fit and healthy while travelling. All the better for making the most of every moment. But, ignoring the possibility of getting sick or injured while you’re travelling would be naive. Regular travellers especially may need medical care at one point or another. Whether it’s food poisoning, a broken limb, or even a local virus, there are tons of different possibilities you could get ill that you may not be able to avoid. To make sure you’re prepared for whatever situation that may come up, we’re going to look at three steps you can take to ensure a hospital stay isn’t the most challenging thing you traverse during your time away.

Keep a translation app on your phone

Language barriers are one of the main issues with healthcare abroad. Chances are that you didn’t think to learn ‘chest infection’ during your trip preparation. Yet, waiting around for a translator could cost you a day or more. That’s an epic waste of time and could possibly be dangerous when it comes to your wellbeing. Instead, make sure you keep a translation app on your phone. That way, you can communicate what’s happened and understand what the doctor tells you. Options like iTranslate are free, so there’s no reason not to take this step.

Gain some basic medical knowledge

We’re not saying that you need to become versed in medicine before heading away. That wouldn’t be practical or worthwhile. But, it is worth getting a feel for some general knowledge here. If you often react to insect bites, for instance, ask your doctor which injection they use. If you’re worried about breaking bones, research machinery like the oec 9800 x-ray machine before you set off. Knowing what machines are used commonly around the world, you can make sure you get the correct diagnosis when you need it.

Get travel health insurance

Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without mention of travel health insurance. It doesn’t take a genius to work out why this is necessary. Even if you already have a policy, there’s a good chance it doesn’t cover oversea injuries. The last thing you want to worry about is not having enough to cover health bills abroad. Instead, sign up for health insurance before you head off, and rest easy that you’ve got this covered. Then, make sure to take your paperwork with you. Simply hand it over when there’s any mention of payment. All the better for getting out of there in quick time and getting on with your holiday.

Angel Zheng

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