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Frequently Asked Questions

Would testing for Coronavirus be covered under your policy?

The Medical section of the Latitudes as well as the cruise vacation medical schemes would cover medically necessary treatment of a Covid-19 infection per the usual terms and conditions (incl. the applicable policy deductible). To the extent that the treating physician deems it medically necessary to test a Covered Person for Covid-19 due to the observed symptoms of the Covered Person, the associated costs would be covered as normal. Where a Covered Person is tested for other reasons (e.g. as a precaution because they have spent time in a high-risk area), those costs would not be recoverable under the Medical section of the policy. For groups that have selected the Health Plus benefit, such costs for precautionary testing could be submitted under the Class 1 – Preventive Medical section of that benefit. This would of course erode the policy limit for the Health Plus benefit and therefore reduce the cover available for other routine/preventive medical, dental and optical expenses but the option is there.

Would the insurance company require medical records in order to adjudicate the claim as payable?

Where testing costs are being claimed under the Medical section of the cover, the claimant or medical provider would need to demonstrate the medical necessity of the testing. Where the testing costs are being claimed under the Health Plus section of the cover (where this has been selected by the employer), no documentation evidencing medical necessity would be required.

Are there any co-pays or deductibles that should be applied in these circumstances?

All Covid-19 related expenses would be subject to the usual policy deductibles.

In the event that pandemics are a policy exclusion, please help us understand what organization (WHO, CDC, ECDC) must deem the outburst a pandemic before the policy exclusions apply?

Pandemics are not a policy exclusion under the Latitudes or the cruise vacation medical schemes. It is important to clarify, however, that these products do not include a trip cancellation / trip interruption element so it would not be possible to seek reimbursement for flights or accommodation that have been cancelled due to the pandemic or indeed for any other reason. This is the case regardless of whether the cancellation is due to the Covered Person’s own decision, the Employer’s decision or a policy or travel advisory issued by a governmental agency. Various airlines are waiving rebooking fees and even permitting flights to be rebooked on a completely different itinerary so we would suggest that this avenue be explored in the event of travel disruptions due to the pandemic.

In response to the incorporation of travel bans in some regions, is your corporation suspending the sale of travel insurance products to the US or other countries? If so, can you please share the time frame for which the suspension would apply?

The Latitudes products are year-round annual policies and are not intended to provide cover just for specific trips. The cruise vacation medical schemes, for their part, provide cover while signed off the vessel on vacation (i.e. typically in home country). All of these products are only available to maritime sector employers, not individual seafarers or the general public.

If someone has to go into quarantine or cannot return to the yacht because of travel restrictions are their salaries covered? They won’t be sick but they won’t be able to return. Would any extra costs be covered (accommodation, replacement crew etc.)?

The policy would respond if a crewmember actually falls sick (in this case with COVID-19). If the crewmember is not sick but has been in a region where there have been several cases and is therefore being quarantined (voluntarily or otherwise), e.g. for 14 days, to make sure that they don’t have the virus, there are no medical expenses to cover and there would be no cover under the crew insurance for their salaries either. If they had to be put up in a hotel before they could join the vessel or before they could continue their travels, this would again not be covered because they are not actually sick themselves.

Are the costs of having to quarantine new joining crew if tested and found to be showing positive for the virus covered by the policy?

In the event that a crew member who is employed with the yacht is found to be medically unfit for duty due to the virus, the sick pay benefit would pay out subject to the usual parameters of the cover. It would not pay quarantine costs or subsistence benefits, and the sick pay benefit would not respond unless the crew member is actually sick – if they’re just self-isolating or quarantined because they’ve been around someone who’s sick for example but are not sick themselves, the sick pay benefit would not respond. Medical expenses for those sick with Covid-19 would be covered in the normal way.