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nkped

U.S. Embassy on health insurance requirement

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Received an e-mail from the U.S. Embassy about the widely reported requirement for health insurance for certain long stay visas.  It doesn't say anything about extensions which is at least a good sign.  Knowing a bit about the mind set, if the Thai police order didn't mention extensions, they were not going to say anything either way.  Since it specifies O-A and O-X visas, I looked at the original transitional in-country visa I got as the first step to the retirement extension.  It was an O.

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New Health Insurance Requirement for Long-Stay Visa Applicants (November 8, 2019)

Location:  Thailand

Event:  As of October 31, 2019, Thailand requires all long-stay (O-A and O-X) visa applicants to carry health insurance.  Per Royal Thai Police Order Number 548/2562 dated September 27, 2019, foreign nationals who have been granted a nonimmigrant O-A or O-X visa must purchase health insurance which covers their length of stay in the Kingdom of Thailand.  The coverage must be no less than 400,000 Thai Baht per policy year for inpatient care and not less than 40,000 Thai Baht per policy year for outpatient services. 

U.S. citizens can present proof of existing insurance (U.S.-based or otherwise) that covers them in Thailand or they can purchase an insurance policy via the Thai General Insurance Association’s website at http://longstay.tgia.org. 

U.S. citizens will need to download the Overseas Insurance Certificate and have it completed, signed, and stamped by their insurance company if using a non-Thai insurance policy to qualify.

Actions to Take:

·        Visit the Royal Thai Embassy website to review visa requirements.

·        Learn more about Thai health insurance policy options.

·        Learn more about Insurance Providers for Overseas Coverage.

 

 

Edited by nkped

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It's best to assume you will be required to get medical insurance

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8 hours ago, Greg_B said:

It's best to assume you will be required to get medical insurance

In the longer view I believe that too. I am concerned all retirement extensions will be impacted, but please note, at the moment that is not the case!

We should all be aware that the Non-Imm-O-A Visa now requires insurance when one applies for it in one's own country, since Oct 31st.The O-X has always required it. But it is  more ominous, almost as if they want to kill off the O-A. People who got the Visa pre Oct 31st, and are returning/coming to Thailand after (remember it is a one-year validity multiple entry), are also being asked to show insurance at the airport. People who have retirement extensions, based on an initial O-A Permit to Stay, are being asked to show insurance at domestic immigration on Extension renewal.(The O-A could be from many years ago!). And lastly, if one is on a retirement extension based on an original O-A, and has left Thailand and is returning on a Re-Entry Permit... yes, I hear insurance will be mentioned. This seems wrong as  the police order explicitly states existing permissions of stay will not be affected.

 

I can't say this is always the case, lots of second and third hand reports here. It is a heads up. So far, the basic and more common Non-Imm-O is not included. Some immigration offices may vary in their implementation too.

What a mess. 

Edited by jacko

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12 hours ago, nkped said:

U.S. citizens will need to download the Overseas Insurance Certificate and have it completed, signed, and stamped by their insurance company if using a non-Thai insurance policy to qualify.

Imagine having to go through that nonsense.  I've got insurance that I know is good in Thailand, and yet getting some form "signed and stamped" by the insurance company sounds like trouble.  

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While indeed 2cd hand info my friend , an agent in Bangkok said the health insurance requirement is coming for everyone. I have good insurance but as js has just said is the company going to complete this ridiculous form?.  I posted before that i cancelled my December trip to the PI worried i might void my O-A.  Also put on hold buying a condo until i see where this goes.  Even though  he is a good friend and pretty clued in i dont like using agents. I love Thailand . Maybe ill just marry the girl in Roi Et. Need to research that.

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2 hours ago, js007 said:

Imagine having to go through that nonsense.  I've got insurance that I know is good in Thailand, and yet getting some form "signed and stamped" by the insurance company sounds like trouble.  

Chances are good the insurance company wouldn't sign it as they already provide a confirmation of coverage document. I see the Thai form as nothing more than a ploy to force you into buying expensive insurance from a Thai company.

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I’m on retirement from a Non-OB visa and hoping they forget about us.

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There have been other differences in the requirements for retirement visas and retirement extensions for some time, police clearances and medical certificates for visas but not extensions.  That said, the logic of the insurance requirement would apply to all of us.

I took the option of the certificate of foreign insurance as a moderately good sign.  I had seen suggestions that it would have to be Thai insurance across the board.  Of course, it may not help if/when I actually have to ask Blue Cross/Blue Shield to execute the form.

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2 hours ago, RhinoTusk said:

I’m on retirement from a Non-OB visa and hoping they forget about us.

That in itself, while  OK,  sometimes doesn't suit some regional IOs... they want you to change to a Non-Imm-O. If retirement extensions join the throng, I would expect it to be for all. Heads down in the meanwhile.

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58 minutes ago, jacko said:

That in itself, while  OK,  sometimes doesn't suit some regional IOs... they want you to change to a Non-Imm-O. If retirement extensions join the throng, I would expect it to be for all. Heads down in the meanwhile.

They may assume that upon retirement all kept paying for the health insurance that was provided while employed. I don’t recall what the coverage was, but I worked several years, paid taxes, and contributed.  Hence, I’m hoping I’ll remain exempt.  I’ve been extended 8 times and can’t recall hearing of anyone being forced to change their visa, so maybe they’ll reward me for my contribution.

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Anyone been thru swampy yet? Just wander what they want for proof this form?

If can not prove insurance just 30 day stamp is the rumor. As it all  is

until someone transits thru it. not sure how you would get USA medicare to fill it out.

 

 

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2 hours ago, aj said:

Anyone been thru swampy yet? Just wander what they want for proof this form?

If can not prove insurance just 30 day stamp is the rumor. As it all  is

until someone transits thru it. not sure how you would get USA medicare to fill it out.

Thought Medicare only covers you in the US, in which case you would need a policy that covers you in Thailand.

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4 hours ago, forcebwithu said:

Thought Medicare only covers you in the US, in which case you would need a policy that covers you in Thailand.

Some people have insurance that's good al over the world, including Thailand.  Still, you have to find some part of the insurance company bureaucracy that will deal with the insurance certification form in a way that will satisfy the Thai authorities.  And you're right.  Medicare will not pay for treatment outside the USA.

 

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Just finish with bcbs director in kcmo. usa.took about

30 mins to have done. their exact words is this is

bullshit forum. i am paid thru age 65 so it should be a one time deal.

if not they put on file for me and will just change dates if have to show every time i

travel in and out of Thailand just e-mail and print it. i am thru swampy in 3 weeks so will know

for sure then😎.

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Aj, not understanding  but sounds good , what is kcmo?  Why is the forum bullshit. ? i have bcbs , would be very good if someone would complete the form. I do spend to much time on Soi LK drinking  the demon Rum so be gentle but it is a serious issue for me, 

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Sounds like he was in Kansas City, MO, and that the Blue Cross people thought that the form was bullshit.  But they did complete it for him, apparently.  I'm not sure what a guy already in Thailand would do.  BCBS has a Thailand coordinator, I think.  Maybe they could help.  

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As far as I can glean from the ThaiVisa Forum, immigration at the airport have had their behaviour corrected and people using a Non-Imm_O-A  Visa issued pre-Oct 31st are no longer being  forced to show insurance and stamped in for a year. Anyone stamped in prior, still using the same permission, are OK too. As far as Retirement Extensions at domestic immigration, those on an original O-A Entry, are being asked to show insurance, notices have been pinned up in a few IO's. 

This thread is more focused on someone applying for a Visa in the USA, I realize, but implications are wider.

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I'm glad now I screwed up my non-OA visa nine years ago. At the time I made the noob mistake of not understanding the expiration date of the visa was different from the re-entry permit. Result was I re-entered Thailand after my re-entry permit had expired and thus invalidated my visa. Got that sorted in country with a new non-O, so can now avoid the hassles those on an OA are enduring.

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7 hours ago, sailingbill said:

Aj, not understanding  but sounds good , what is kcmo?  Why is the forum bullshit. ? i have bcbs , would be very good if someone would complete the form. I do spend to much time on Soi LK drinking  the demon Rum so be gentle but it is a serious issue for me, 

Pretty sure we have the same flavor of bcbs.  Found this on their website.  

Overseas Assistance Center
Available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
 
For calls from the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, call:
For all other calls from outside the U.S., call:
Email the Overseas Assistance Center at:

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Thanks nkped, i will give it a try, if it works will save me 30k i  may pay my agent friend .I will report back. Im aware of the contact but didnt know they would complete the form.   

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Just went thru swampy 00:30 last night. Did not ask for insurance health. person ahead of me finger prints

the usual things. did not have to finger print i had them ready for scan the immigration said  already have on

visa. anyone hear that before i always thought they erase them when departing. anyway did

not ask for proof of med ins

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1 hour ago, aj said:

Just went thru swampy 00:30 last night. Did not ask for insurance health. person ahead of me finger prints

the usual things. did not have to finger print i had them ready for scan the immigration said  already have on

visa. anyone hear that before i always thought they erase them when departing. anyway did

not ask for proof of med ins

Take your word for it, but that's weird about the fingerprints.  A major reason for the fingerprint scan should be to determine if the person at the counter is the same one who got the visa.  If they erase fingerprints upon departure, how will they catch people who come back with new and improved passports after having had problems previously?

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