Moving to the USA, while suffering from health issues implies more than facing cultural differences. Aside from speaking a new language (if English isn’t your mother tongue) you also need to learn what’s the difference between Medicare and Medicaid and find a doctor who can treat your condition. The USA has a different approach to healthcare than most of the states of the world. Moving there means you no longer pay a Medicare income tax, but you need a private insurance to cover for your healthcare expenses. The best way to get private insurance is through your employer, but this solution is available only to full-time workers. So, don’t be surprised when the ambulance medics ask you for your insurance information before they take you to the hospital.
Here is some basic info for expats with health conditions who plan to move to the USA.
Medicare vs Medicaid
USA residents pay for their medical insurance, and even when they get one, they still pay for doctor visits. So, when moving to the USA, the best solution is your employer to pay for your insurance in full. Some companies pay only part of their employees’ medical insurance.
The state doesn’t require mandatory insurance for residents, but it’s advisable to get private medical insurance because healthcare costs can be pricey. If you work in America, you can benefit from a company healthcare scheme that can cover for you and family members.
The healthcare system combines state-funded and private insurance. Medicare and Medicaid are two federally-found insurance programs for different groups of individuals.
Medicare – a federally administered health insurance for people over 65 years old or people with disabilities and end-stage renal disease.
Medicaid – health insurance program for low-income residents (older people, disabled, families with children and pregnant women).
You Can Use Natural Remedies Like Medical Marijuana To Treat Your Health Issues
In 26 states, medical marijuana is legal because it has many therapeutic uses. You can find it in various forms, from oils to pills and powders. Medical marijuana relieves pain, reduces stiffness and muscle spasms (especially when suffering from multiple sclerosis). As more and more dispensaries open up nationwide you’ll probably find a store close to your house. Most of the states that allow medical marijuana require doctor approval, so make sure you apply online for one.
Some Health Issues Can Make You Inadmissible From Entering The USA
Common health conditions don’t stop you from getting a visa or green card, but some disorders do (especially if they’re communicable). You cannot enter or remain in the USA if you:
- don’t have required vaccines
- have a communicable disease
- have a medical disorder that causes you to commit to behaviour dangerous to yourself or other people
- have a history of addiction or drug abuse
When you apply to enter and reside permanently in the USA, the Department of State undergoes a medical examination. Check the Centres for Disease Control’s list of communicable diseases that stop you from entering the US.
I hope you enjoyed reading: Moving To The USA – A Guide For Expats Dealing With Health Issues.
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