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Medical emergencies, how to behave

Tallinn, Estonia
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6 posts
2 reviews
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Medical emergencies, how to behave

Hi

I've read few topics about this but still not so clear what to expect.

If there happens to medical issue, then is the best choice Cira Garcia if you are close to Havana.

What should a tourist expect in ER? Is english understood? Also what about ambulances if smth happens? Is the number really 104 for ambulance as I can see on many pages? Or is it wiser to have a taxi and get to the ER

I have chronical condition which can worsen at the time nobody can predict. Not critical though and I can't let that stop me travelling. We are travelling mostly our own, not staying in resorts and hotels to ask assistance. And yes, of course insurance does cover everything, european credit card as well.

Really appreciated if someone gave a short overview of real practical things one should know.

Thanks

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Melia Cayo Coco
Melia Cayo Coco
#1 of 12 hotels in Cayo Coco
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
#1 of 18 hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Toronto, Canada
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1,309 posts
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11. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

We dealt with a minor incident last week. Stitches to close a cut done at the doctor's office on the resort. It's not possible to call collect from Cayo Coco hotels, however our insurance required us to call them. Our front desk charged 2.10CUC per minute. The insurance company said to turn in the receipt from the phone call for review, so not sure if it's covered. TIP: I called the insurance company and gave them the resort number and room number to call me back in 5 minutes. That worked well for us and most of the conversation was on their dime, however we racked up about 12CUCs in 6 minutes.

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Cayo Coco
Cayo Coco
Jardines del Rey Archipelago, Cuba
NJ
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25 posts
58 reviews
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12. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

I have several medical conditions that are unfortunately, part of my life (pre-existing condition arguments aside). I always take out travel insurance and I always have information for medical emergencies handy. It is definitely good to know these particular tips for Cuba. I did know that the medical care in Cuba was very good, but thank you all for this specific information.

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Cuba
Cuba
Caribbean
Palm Desert...
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137 posts
10 reviews
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13. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

I have a question - what does the required insurance for entering Cuba cover?

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Cuba
Cuba
Caribbean
Whipsnade, United...
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1 post
105 reviews
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14. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

Pt S's reply below makes a lot of sense. Key points are:

1. Cuba is an underdeveloped country.

2. Facilities are basic.

3 Doctors are pretty good but if you have a complex condition which is also life-threatening you need a back-up plan. There is a fledgling "health tourism" industry but it's limited.

4. Make sure you have enough cash to tide you over. Bear in mind that there are two, parallel economies " The CUC or the international economy for tourists which is not cheap and the Peso economy for locals.

5. Make sure you find someone wo speaks both Spanish and English.

6. If you need electrical equipment such as a nebuliser for asthma make sure you have the right plugs and adapters: you need both European ( for hotels) and American.

7. Discuss your trip with your insurer before you go to make sure you understand the emergency procedure.

8. If you take meds make sure you have more than enough. Cuban pharmacies are extremely basic. I ran out of blood pressure pills and in due course found one strip of 14 tabs in a hotel-based pharmacy. Read the labels carefully.

Having said all that Cuba is an extremely friendly country with lovely people who are (almost) invariably helpful.

Slowlfyer

Edited: 1:59 pm, February 13, 2017
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Cuba
Cuba
Caribbean
Toronto, Canada
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1,309 posts
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15. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

@#13 - read your travel insurance policy carefully, there are exclusions. For example - an incident while you are under the influence of alcohol may not be covered. This is a common exclusion, and most people traveling at All Inclusive resorts are usually consuming alcohol. Pre existing conditions can pose a problem as well. Depends on the policy.

Palm Desert...
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137 posts
10 reviews
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16. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

#15 there is no actual insurance policy. I am referring to the insurance that is included in US airline tickets.

Toronto, Canada
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1,309 posts
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17. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

if there's insurance, there's a policy. ask the question. I'm not sure how it works from the U.S., but we (Canadians) usually get a card with phone numbers to call in case of an incident. That would have a policy number on it, and usually the name of the company that underwrites the insurance.

18. Re: Medical emergencies, how to behave

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