To see a doctor in an emergency, you can go to the emergency room at the hospital included in your insurance company and they will assess how serious your injury or illness is and admit you as time allows. In case of a true emergency, call 911 and an ambulance and paramedics will arrive as soon as possible to take care of the injured person and transport them to the nearest hospital – regardless of insurance.
If you have a doctor you see regularly you might be able to be seen on short notice. This is preferable to going to the emergency room as that usually involves a long wait.
Always have your insurance card with you to fill out the paperwork. When you have established yourself in a neighborhood, research what hospital is nearest and in your network.
Major NYC Hospitals:
In addition to these hospitals, there are free clinics for clients with no insurance or low-income, but there is usually a long wait tobe seen and extra paperwork to be filled out. The New York Free Clinic is an excellent facility that provides no cost health care services including specialty referrals, counselling, patient education, social services, and screening and registration for public health insurance.
In the US, drugs are offered more easily than in Europe. Most pharmaceutical drugs are divided into two categories, over-the-counter and with prescription. Both are available at pharmacies; the difference is that over-the-counter can also be purchased at regular grocery stores. This commonly includes cold medicine, basic pain meds, antihistamines, etc.
Only prescription drugs require a written note to be faxed from the doctor's office or be brought upon pick-up. A co-pay is usually required with your insurance. Many prescribed drugs are covered by the medical insurance but may charge substantial co-pays. You can always ask for generic brands to diminish the cost.
Pharmacies are open long hours and you can find basic meds at grocery stores 24-hours a day. Hospital pharmacies are another option in you need an emergency prescription medicine. You can find the closest pharmacy to you on Google maps, adding your postcode in the search bar.
With so much to deal with before leaving your home country, (taxes, moving house, paperwork etc.) the careful planning of your expatriation to New York City is an essential step. As far as healthcare is concerned, your local social security scheme won’t be accompanying you to your host country and, once abroad, you might be surprised by the care system you find in Usa. So, before leaving, make sure you have appropriate cover!
EasyExpat.com works in partnership with APRIL International to provide specific insurance solutions for travelling or staying outside your country of nationality.
Designed for either short or long stays, APRIL International’s insurance policies offer protection against any problems that might arise before departure or during your time in Usa: cancelling your trip, medical expenses following an illness or accident, needing to be repatriated, causing damage to a third party or losing your luggage.
For more information on expat health insurance in the Usa, visit our partner APRIL International