Travel News » April 2009 » Free Health Checks Could Lead To Huge Medical Bills

Free Health Checks Could Lead To Huge Medical Bills


Thousands of Britons who take advantage of the government's offer of free medical check-ups for the over-40s introduced this month could unwittingly end up holidaying abroad without adequate travel insurance.

Anyone who is diagnosed with a medical condition is unlikely to be covered by standard travel insurance as most policies exclude cover for pre-existing conditions. If they become ill on holiday, they could end up with medical bills running into thousands of pounds.

Travel insurance is available to those with medical conditions, but they must declare their condition. Specialist travel insurance providing comprehensive cover is available from insurewithease.

The Department of Health has introduced the five-yearly free medical check-ups for everyone aged between 40 and 74 as part of a series of NHS reforms unveiled in January last year.

Available in doctors' surgeries, health centres, walk-in centres and chemists, the check-ups will test for the risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and kidney disease. Patients will be asked about their health, diet, lifestyle and family medical history and undergo blood tests.

An estimated 15 million people are eligible for the free tests, and it is expected that 2 million a year will volunteer for the medical check-ups.

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