Many international hospitals in China are accredited by the Joint Commission International (JCI), which is recognized as a mark of quality for healthcare organizations worldwide. These hospitals offer comprehensive medical care for foreign nationals living in China, and some of them also have branches in other cities around the country to ensure you can get quality healthcare no matter where you travel within the country. China Access Health is an insurance broker that is licensed in China. Healthcare in china for expats are located in Shanghai and hold the license to provide services to clients throughout China in all regions. Good example of such can be:
Beijing United Family Hospital
Beijing United Family Hospital (very often referred to as BJU by those living in the capital) was the first international hospital in China to be accredited by the JCI. It provides a full range of medical services, including emergency care, primary care, specialty care, and surgery. BJU has a team of international doctors and nurses who are fluent in English, and it also offers Chinese language classes for foreign patients.
Shanghai United Family Hospital
Shanghai United Family Hospital (SHU) is another JCI-accredited international hospital in China. It offers a wide range of medical services, including emergency care, primary care, specialty care, and surgery. SHU has a team of international doctors and nurses who are fluent in English, and it also offers Chinese language classes for foreign patients.
When dealing with such level of hospitals it is important to remember that medical expenses in those can sometimes be hefty. Healthcare in China for expats in such medical facilities can bring you unexpected medical bills of well over USD 500 per regular outpatient consultation. Which brings us to our next important topic of discussion in the article.
How can foreigners in China choose a good health insurance?
Word of mouth is always a good way to start when looking for anything in China, and health insurance is no different. Try asking friends, family, and co-workers for recommendations on good health insurance providers. This in particular is good option since most of your friends are in similar situation as yours: living in a same city, going to similar level of medical facility, perhaps even have family and have identical insurance protection requirements as you. You can also search online for forums and reviews of different insurance providers. Finally, make sure to compare prices and coverage before choosing an insurance provider. This has become pretty easy since humankind entered digital era and all of such can be done online simply by filling out several forms online.
Talking from experience, it is good to outsource comparing hundreds of insurance plans on the market to some expert. Now this can be either some financial agent or even a broker. Either of those don’t work or represent any particular insurance company but rather all of them. So the more detailed requirements you can get them concerning your insurance premium budget and level of protection you need – the more tailored insurance plans they can present to you to choose from. Now it also worth mentioning that as per China law all these intermediaries cannot charge you extra fee on the insurance products and your payment shall always be directed to insurance provider of your choice. This can slightly vary depending on the insurance product you purchase but vast majority of regular health insurance plans do follow those rules.
Top list to bare in mind when shopping for a good health insurance policy in China as a foreigner:
- Level of cover you need, will this be only for major medical care or you need more comprehensive plan that can include outpatient and maybe even things such as dental or wellness;
- Check on the terms and conditions, request your sales to provide you exact policy wording documents so you can skim through it to make sure on what terms of coverage you will be getting;
- Does your insurance provider offer any value added services? Examples of such can include second medical opinion or even direct billing – cashless services with certain medical institutions;
- Does your policy have any out of pocket expenses? Examples of those can include copayments on certain bills or medical treatments, deductibles or excess. Last ones can either be a general amount which you will need to pay by yourself throughout the year before insurance company covers any medical bills, or on the other hand it can be applied with a much smaller amount but on each outpatient visit.