One of the biggest traps with travel insurance is that none will cover the birth of a newborn child, whether premature or not (that I know of, please feel free to contact us if you have found a company that does). This can be a real risk for pregnant women travelling overseas, even from the first trimester of pregnancy, as they can go into labor at any time.
Some travel insurance companies will offer a certain level of cover to pregnant women but this is generally limited to a certain date such as the 26th or 30th week of pregnancy and will not cover the actual birth. If you are pregnant and planning to travel internationally it is best to actually ring the different travel insurance companies to inquire about the level of cover. You also need to confirm this in the PDS.
Since travel insurance doesn’t cover the actual birth or the baby it can cause large medical bills, especially if something goes wrong such as a premature baby or a caesarian section.
There was a recent case of an Australian couple who traveled to Canada and she went into labor at the airport on the way home. She was about 26 weeks pregnant and certainly not expecting to have a baby this early. They had travel insurance but as you know now it didn’t cover the birth or the premature baby. A premature baby requires a lengthy stay in intensive care. This can cost in excess of $1000 a day. This resulted in a bill of over 1 million dollars. Unfortunately Australia does not have a reciprocal medical arrangement with Canada, despite them being Commonwealth countries, so the couple had to foot the entire medical bill themselves.
Some countries offers reciprocal healthcare to Australians. A full list can be found on the Medicare website. This arrangement will cover your medical costs.