Expat health insurance may rise with Grexit

Published:  15 Jun at 9 AM
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British expatriates in Greece may see their medical insurance doubling in cost if the country leaves the euro and medical institutions do not cut their charges.

Even if Greece’s hospitals do reduce charges substantially, expatriates holding international cover would still collect claims beyond Greece’s borders, which would surely trigger premium hikes.

Financial issues for expats in Greece – along with Spain – are making many Britons sell their properties and leave. HiFix, a leading foreign exchange broker, says that 33% of British-owned properties in both countries are up for sale. This is supposedly twice the normal turnover, said the group.

However, the majority of potential sellers are not getting their asking price. They are continuing on, hoping for a restoration in the single currency and a pick up in EU economies.

Medical insurers are not detecting much fall-off in sales in Spain. Kevin Melton, a sales and marketing director with Axa PPP International, says that, sales have generally not gone down.

However, there may be an aspect of disguise in the figures since the group has been increasing its presence in Spain, he added.
Mr Melton said the company has lost some groups, especially in Greece, due to the economic downturn. People have found alternatives or downgraded to domestic cover, he explained.
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