Live Chat
0203 829 3875
Mon-Fri 8am-8pm & Sat 9am-5pm

24/7 Emergency Assistance

What to do in a medical emergency abroad

At Insurancewith we understand that having to seek medical attention abroad can be extremely frightening and stressful, which is why we have created the following guide to help you cope in such a situation, and to understand how our 24 hour emergency assistance service can work on your behalf.

  • Insurancewith‘s appointed emergency assistance team are called Emergency Assistance Facilities or EAF. EAF are a doctor managed emergency medical service, which is available 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. You can contact EAF in an emergency by calling 02038 296 745. For non-emergencies please call 02038 296 558. You can also email them at
  • EAF pride themselves on clinical excellence, with a team comprising of specialists in aviation medicine and medical emergencies worldwide.
  • If you need medical treatment abroad, (unless it’s an extreme emergency,) you should call EAF prior to going to hospital so that they can advise you on the best place to seek treatment. Many private clinics around the world seek to ‘trap’ tourists in need of medical help by charging extortionate rates, sometimes without even providing the necessary care. However if you contact EAF before you go to hospital, they can give you advice and liaise with the treating doctor to make sure you get the necessary care and attention you need, without falling victim to the tourist trap. You can contact an ambulance around the world by calling 112.
  • When you contact EAF you will speak to a member of the operations team who will take down the basic particulars of your case, and allocate a case number. If necessary they will confirm that you are insured and provide the hospital or clinic with the appropriate billing instructions. Your case may be referred to one of the doctors on the team who will, if necessary, contact you to ascertain the exact nature of your injury or illness and then put in place the appropriate strategy to ensure that you receive the correct treatment and, if required, advice on your repatriation.

Below is a checklist of things you should know and do before you leave home;

  • Put EAF’s phone number into your phone before you start your holiday – this should ensure you can contact them at any time, even if you don’t have your travel insurance paper work handy.
  • Make sure that your phone has plenty of credit and charge throughout your holiday.
  • Many people don’t realise that their phones aren’t set up to accept incoming calls or texts abroad – check with your phone provider that your phone will work abroad, otherwise you will have no means of contact.
  • If you’re travelling in Europe please make sure you have a valid EHIC, which replaced the old E111. The EHIC is free of charge and will provide discounted or free medical treatment and medication in most state European facilities. If you use your EHIC we will wave your medical excess.
  • Make sure you have declared any medical conditions to us, to make sure you’re fully covered – if your health or medication have changed since you purchased the policy, please contact our traveller’s health check line on 02038 296 745.
  • PLEASE NOTE you should never provide a medical facility with your credit card details or surrender your passport to anyone.

More information can be found in your policy wording or in the tabs below.

Get a Quote


What can EAF do for you?

Our first priority is always the safety and wellbeing of our customers, followed closely by excellent customer service. To make sure we meet your expectations it is important that you know what EAF and your policy can do for you;

  • It will not always be possible for the 24 hour emergency assistance service doctor to call you back straight away, this could be due to time zone differences or because he is awaiting further information from the treating doctor or hospital. This does not mean that you have been forgotten, and wherever possible a member of the operations team will keep you regularly updated.
  • Although the local doctor might discharge you from hospital and suggest that you can return home, there are regulations imposed by airlines regarding when you can, and cannot fly following a serious accident or an operation. Our 24 hour emergency assistance service are experts in aviation medicine, and the decision as to when it is safe for you to fly home should be left in their hands.
  • EAF will take the appropriate action necessary to ensure your safety and wellbeing, this could entail:
    • – Moving you from a private facility (if you have not been admitted to a state registered hospital) where the standard of treatment might be inadequate or the price of treatment inflated for tourists.
    • – Recommending an extended stay in the hospital (or a local hotel) until your condition has stabilised sufficiently to allow your safe return home.
  • Always remember that your travel insurance does not cover the cost of private medical treatment unless it has been approved by our 24 hour emergency assistance service.
  • Unfortunately due to the emergency nature of their work, EAF do not have time to discuss your condition with or update multiple people. Therefore we suggest that you nominate one person to be the contact point for the 24 hour emergency assistance service, this will ensure that they are not trying to explain matters to numerous people, which simply causes confusion and delay for everyone concerned. This person can then keep the rest of your family updated.
  • If you require treatment as an out-patient (usually involving minor ailments which entail a visit to the local chemist, doctor or clinic) you should pay any bill less than £500, obtain an itemised receipt and contact our claims department on your return home for compensation. If the bill is over £500 make sure you have contacted EAF, who will liaise with the hospital. If you cannot afford to pay the bill, contact EAF immediately.


Frequently asked questions

What happens if I miss my return flight due to illness or injury?

Don’t worry, provided you have contacted our medical assistance service your policy will be automatically extended to cover you until it is agreed that you are fit to travel home. Our medical assistance service will liaise with you and, where necessary, with your treating doctor to decide when you are fit to travel.

What if I want to come home early?

This policy covers you to come home early due to illness or injury, only if medical treatment is not available locally. If you are thinking of cutting short your trip because you are not well then you must contact our 24 hour emergency assistance service on +44 (0) 2038 296 745 for advice first.

If you need to come home for any other reason, such as the illness of a close relative in the UK then you should make your own arrangements, bearing in mind your duty to act at all times as if uninsured. If you are not sure whether your circumstances are included in the cover then call Travel Claims Facilities on + 44 (0) 2038 296 761.

What is the tourist trap?

The ‘tourist trap’ refers to certain privately owned medical clinics around the world who seek to ‘trap’ tourists by inflating medical bills in the hope of getting paid by the tourist or their travel insurance. These clinics usually pay taxi drivers, hotels and hostels to send any injured tourists to their clinics, they then charge extortionate rates without providing appropriate care for their patients. To protect yourself against falling into the trap, always make sure you visit a state facility if possible, and under no circumstances should you ever give your credit card details or surrender your passport to anyone.

I’m travelling to Europe, why do I need insurance if I have an EHIC?

The EHIC should never be a substitute for travel insurance, although it should offer you free or discounted medical treatment and prescriptions in most state EU facilities, it will not cover the cost of repatriation – for example if you have missed your return flight home due to illness or injury and need to book a new one.

Share this page:
InsuranceWith Awards
Get a Quote Retrieve a Quote