I am at the point that I need to investigate other insurance alternatives. I moved to Panama in 2003 and my age prevented me from looking at Blue Cross in Panama. I wound up going with MAPFRE, which, at that time, appeared to provide the best general coverage.
I have their basic plan. On reviewing my most recent VISA bill, I see that my monthly rate has grown to $845/month. I will be 73 in October and I realize that with age, coverage costs go up. However, I see no evidence that MAPFRE will ever reach a maximum limit and I am ready to start looking at alternatives.
I have only had one claim in 12 years and that was for a couple hundred dollars. Luckily my health has been good, but one never knows what is around the bend.
I consider healthcare one of the biggest risks in moving to Panama, if you don’t have a plan for paying medical expenses. I have seen too many cases of gringos being shipped from Hospital Chiriquí to the Regional Hospital, when expenses got too high, and most never walked out of the Regional Hospital.
So here is what I would like to find out from others living here. What has your research found to be the best cost effective solution? If you think you have a great plan that might work for me, I would appreciate knowing about it.
If you want to have your agent send me a plan to consider, that is great. If I can beat what I have for a better rate, then I will consider it.
I would like a international plan that provides coverage if I am on a trip. MAPFRE would pay if I were outside of Panama, but at Panama rates.
The discussions and comments that come from this post may also open the eyes of some considering Panama as their retirement home.