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8 important things to ask your insurance broker

By Localiiz Branded | 10 August 2022

Header image courtesy of Kampus Production (via Pexels)

Hong Kong has many great public hospitals, but the fact remains that a majority of the city’s best specialists work in private healthcare with sky-high prices. Without insurance, that is—health insurance helps safeguard your finances during a medical emergency and keeps premium medical care within budget. But with so many insurance companies out there offering different deals and plans, how do you know which one is the best for you?

Introducing the insurance brokerage services to help you compare between plans and make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck! If you’re new to Hong Kong’s insurance scene, there’s a lot of information to process. We asked the experts at Pacific Prime, an award-winning insurance broker, for their must-know tips and tricks before choosing a health insurance plan.

Photo: Gustavo Fring (via Pexels)

“Are you a generalist insurance broker or are you specialised?”

Insurance brokers are not one-size-fits-all. Specialised insurance brokers tailor insurance plans for specific individuals, but comprehensive insurance brokers assist you in a wide variety of insurance plans. It’s important to choose the specialised insurance you need. For example, Pacific Prime, as a comprehensive insurance broker, has the professional acumen to assist in health, life, travel, personal liability, and corporate insurance.

Photo: Mart Production (via Pexels)

“What services do you provide?”

There’s a lot to insurance policies and plans, so much so that it can be hard to wrap your head around them. Insurance brokers do more than just consult on insurance plans—they also answer your questions on insurance policies, as well as assist with renewals.

Pacific Prime has a dedicated team on hand that you can contact for any questions you have throughout your policy duration. Your point of contact can also provide assistance on claims handling and escalation, and minimises any confusion that may arise before and after purchasing a plan. Its team provides advice and services that are free of charge, and any policy premiums purchased through Pacific Prime will never be higher than going directly to the insurance company.

Photo: Ono Kosuki (via Pexels)

“What is the duration of a health insurance plan?”

Your circumstances change as you age, and so does your country of residence, budget, and need for different types of medical aid. That is why the standard contract length of a medical insurance plan is 12 months. If you find that your current plan no longer suits your needs, just wait for a little bit, and you will be able to switch to another. However, a majority of health insurance plans are renewable, saving you the trouble of going through the whole process every year. All international health insurance plans are guaranteed to be renewable.

Photo: Pacific Prime

“What’s the difference between a regular health insurance plan and an international health insurance plan?”

You might be comfortable living in Hong Kong at the moment, but you never know where life will take you in the future. International health insurance travels with you wherever you go, so you’ll remain covered without the hassle of going through the entire process again whenever you relocate to a new country. There’s also the added benefit of guaranteed renewability, so your plan is renewable regardless of your claim history in the previous year.

Photo: Andrea Piacquadio (via Pexels)

“What does an international health insurance plan cover?”

Plans can vary with the type of medical services they cover, such as hospitalisation fees, GP visits, dental care, and more. But what they have in common is the scope of geographical areas they cover. You typically have the choice between an international health insurance plan applicable worldwide, and one applicable worldwide excluding North America. IPMI (international private medical insurance) allows you to select a doctor and hospital of your choice within the covered area. It mainly covers inpatient, outpatient, maternity, dental, and well-being. Some also come with deductible and cost-saving options. With the right cover plan, feel free to travel with the assurance that you’ll be in safe hands wherever you go!

Photo: Karolina Grabowska (via Pexels)

“Do I require inpatient or outpatient treatment coverage?”

Inpatient treatment refers to procedures that are conducted in a hospital where overnight stays are necessary, which will include surgical fees, diagnostic tests, emergency dental, and daycare treatment. Outpatient treatment refers to services that do not necessarily require someone to head to a hospital, covering routine care procedures that can be conducted in a clinic and pharmacies like prescription drugs, vaccinations, and doctor’s appointments. All IPMI plans include coverage for hospital stays and inpatient treatment, as this is mandatory, but outpatient coverage can be added to your plan as a premium benefit.

Photo: Kampus Production (via Pexels)

“What is a deductible/excess on an IPMI (international private medical insurance) plan?”

A deductible or excess is a price for medical fees you pay out-of-pocket before your policy kicks in and you start to be insured by the insurance company. Some plans are zero-deductible, meaning you don’t need to pay anything before the coverage kicks in, but that usually means paying more for the insurance plan. Deciding on the right amount of deductible on a plan can save you a lot of money in the long run, so it is important to choose carefully. At Pacific Prime, an advisor will help you find the best option based on your budget and circumstances.

Photo: Emma Bauso (via Pexels)

“Do international health insurance plans have age restrictions?”

Age limits for applying for insurance plans can differ between providers. Most plans tend to apply to individuals up to 60 and 80 years old. Usually, there is no minimum age restriction, so international health insurance plans can cover children as well.

Now that you know the most important things to ask your insurance broker, it’s time to find a plan that fits your needs, and Pacific Prime is the ideal place to start. Cutting through the noise of the many available health coverage plans available in Hong Kong, the expert insurance broker can help select a plan best suited to your needs and circumstances.

As a one-stop-shop for clients, Pacific Prime provides advice, answers, and services free of charge, and operates 15 offices in major cities worldwide so you can minimise the fuss of going through the insurance process, anywhere, anytime.

Pacific Prime

Pacific Prime is an awarding-winning insurance broker that helps clients compare plans from various insurance providers to secure the right plan at the best possible price, based on clients’ needs and interests. With 20-plus years of experience and 15 offices globally, Pacific Prime offers comprehensive knowledge, free insurance advice and planning, as well as a wide range of insurance solutions, working with local insurers and providing support from its team of experts.

(+852) 3113 1331 (English)

(+852) 3113 2112 (Chinese)

Units 1–11, 35/F, 1 Hung To Road, Kwun Tong