Moving abroad is a big decision to make. You’ll be leaving behind all of your friends and family and stepping into unknown territory. There are a million things to deal with from packing to selling your old house. But one thing that often gets overlooked is your health. If you’re emigrating to a fairly exotic country, there are all sorts of health implications that you don’t usually have to deal with at home. If you aren’t prepared for it, you won’t end up having the experience that you had hoped for. Before you set off, make sure you’ve considered all of these things.
Getting vaccinations is the first thing you should do. There will be all sorts of illnesses that you haven’t been exposed to at home and if you don’t get vaccinated properly, you put yourself in a lot of danger. Most of the time you won’t be allowed into the country if you can’t prove that you’ve been vaccinated anyway. Use this handy form to find out which vaccinations you need. Make an appointment with your doctor and tell them about your plans to move and they will set up appointments for you. Once you’re all done, make sure you get all of the necessary paperwork from them so you can prove that you’re safe. Leave enough time to get them done because some of them need more than one cycle.
Have a Contingency Plan
If the worst does happen and you get seriously ill, you need to decide on a plan. One of the biggest considerations is whether to go home or not. If you are seriously ill you may want to be close to your family. Look into hiring a medevac service that can take you home at short notice if needs be. Or, you could stay out there but, depending on the situation, you may want to be closer to your loved ones. For your family, you need to work out what is going to happen to them if you are unable to look after them.
Get a Checkup
While you’re still at home and you have your health insurance, you may as well take advantage of it. Go to the doctors and get a full medical checkup, you’re probably due one anyway. They can identify any problems and if there’s anything a bit more serious, you could consider putting off the move. If you don’t get a checkup, you might arrive, only to find that you’ve got lots of health issues that need sorting out. That’s going to be a huge hassle on top of everything else that you have to sort.
Understand the Healthcare System
The biggest mistake that people make when they’re going abroad is thinking that the healthcare system out there is going to be the same as it is at home. Healthcare and insurance is an incredibly complex thing to deal with, think back to the first time you tried to sort out your insurance. If you don’t get to grips with it before you go, you’ll have a hard time trying to set it up while you’re dealing with the language barrier.
If you move abroad without making these preparations, you’ll get a nasty shock when you get out there.