Travel medical and crisis response | A global safety net

Heading into the unknown is not something you take lightly. Does your insurance?

But for every plan and checklist you create, a dozen unexpected crises can throw your careful preparations into disarray.

It might be a sprained ankle halfway up the north face. Or it may be a kidnapping.

Either way, you don’t want to deal with it alone.

That’s why obtaining appropriate cover matters. That means diverse issues stemming from injuries, climatic conditions, civil unrest or targeted violence can be dealt with by people who have spent their careers doing exactly that.

These may sound like complicated situations – and they can be – but preparing for them is nowhere near as complex as you may think.

Risk versus recklessness

Risk and recklessness are not synonyms. Informed travellers avoid being reckless in precarious situations through research. That’s why the travel medical insurance company battleface created Words + Images: to provide travellers with essential information about safety and specialty insurance. Informed travellers are safer travellers, even in the world’s most dangerous places and situations.

Unconventional travellers need an insurance provider that specialises in remote, underdeveloped, politically volatile or downright violent parts of the world. That means – unlike many products offered by more mainstream insurers – cover isn’t be invalidated by an FCO warning.

Assessment

From the moment a claimant gets in touch, it’s essential for the insurance team to assess the current status as well as ongoing risks to those involved, and work quickly to stabilise the situation.

In practice, that could involve everything from facilitating medical treatment in-country, arranging evacuation by air, or instructing hostage negotiators to communicate with armed groups on your behalf.

Insurance companies don’t work alone. For example, battleface collaborates with assistance and claims company Tangiers International and security risk management company MS Risk.

Services

A good insurance company is only as good as the services it provides to people when they need it.

Tangiers International operates in 192 countries, works with more than 40,000 specialist medical providers and has more than 100 on-the-ground field agents or medical case managers in many of the world’s hot spots. This means that local teams can liaise with medical staff and local communities, obtain visas for evacuation by air or land and overcome any bureaucratic hurdles that may arise.

Though no two situations are the same, you can read some recent case studies here. 

Security in a rapidly changing world

Many Words + Images readers travel to regions where personal safety can be compromised. That’s why it’s important to consider crisis response services before hitting the road.

Crisis response services are activated once a crisis occurs. For example, if you’re kidnapped, impacted by terrorism or civil unrest, extorted or simply unsure of the best way of safeguarding yourself or your group in a hostile environment.

This may involve deploying to where your party is in order to negotiate with politically-motivated groups or criminal gangs, devising a security plan to stem any further risks, and/or extracting those still facing danger.

battleface uses MS Risk. The company’s international consultant network enables it to provide support domestically and abroad – utilising local knowledge as well as industry-approved best practices.

For more details, head over to MS Risk’s website for case studies in some of the crisis management operations it has been involved in.

Bottom line

No matter which travel medical insurance company you decide on, make sure it covers your needs. Does the company cover the region you’re travelling to? If it’s an unstable area, are crisis response services available? If you don’t speak the language, are there agents on the ground who can communicate for you?

Conclusion

  • reduce risk by doing research
  • find a travel medical insurance company that suits your needs, including 24/7 access, local field agents, and medevac
  • if going into an unstable region, consider crisis response services
  • for more information, get in touch: contact@battleface.com