Your Travel Insurance Benefits and Coronavirus

Eligible employees of Western are covered under an Emergency Travel Assistance Plan, administered by Global Excel Management through Manulife Group Benefits. No changes have been made to this coverage as a result of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak. Here are some questions and answers that may help you to understand your coverage.

What travel benefits have changed as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak?

The Government of Canada has provided an informational website about travel outlining the latest advice.

The Emergency Travel Assistance plan is intended to provide coverage while outside of Ontario - should you become injured or unexpectedly ill while travelling. This coverage is in place and remains unchanged. Manulife offers these tips about coronavirus and travel.

Travel currently comes with the added risk of being unable to receive medical attention while abroad due to the existing strain on medical systems, and the risk of having to remain outside of Canada for a prolonged period due to border disruptions, travel restrictions and/or medical inability to travel.

Would I be covered if I became ill with coronavirus (COVID-19) while travelling?

If you are planning to travel outside of Ontario, it is important to be aware of the details of coverage for medical emergencies (COVID-19 or another illness) that is available to you and your family through the Emergency Travel Assistance plan. Manulife and Global Excel Management provide excellent information to help you plan ahead and understand your coverage. Resources are listed below.

An example of important information you should know: Your travel plan provides coverage for emergency medical treatments. A medical emergency is a sudden, unexpected injury, a new medical condition, or a specific medical problem or chronic condition that was diagnosed but medically stable before you began your travels.

Medically stable means that in the 90 days before your departure, you have not been treated or tested for any new symptoms or condition; have not had an increase or worsening of any existing symptoms; did not change treatments or medications (other than normal adjustments for ongoing care); were not admitted to the hospital for treatment of the condition; and do not have any appointments or tests planned after your return home.

Where can I get details about my Emergency Travel Assistance coverage?

If you are planning to travel, we suggest reading the following information to get a comprehensive overview of your coverage, and understand any exclusions that may apply.  For help with questions before you travel call Manulife at 1-866-896-8515. For emergency numbers while travelling, see the links below, or confirm in advance by contacting Global Excel Management at 1-800-363-1835.

What happens if I am placed in quarantine by a medical doctor or public health official while I am travelling?

If you or a family member experience a medical emergency and get sick while travelling and are quarantined (example: diagnosed with COVID-19), you would be eligible for coverage under your Emergency Travel Assistance benefit. In addition, your trip interruption coverage will cover your costs for food, accommodations, and return transportation home (example: if you miss your originally scheduled flight).

Note: If you are placed under medical quarantine while travelling but are not sick or having a medical emergency, your plan would not provide any coverage for trip interruption costs. This is because Emergency Travel Assistance is intended to protect you if you have a medical emergency or get sick.

Do I have trip cancellation coverage?

Trip cancellation coverage is not part of Western’s Emergency Travel Assistance coverage through Manulife.

If you have privately purchased trip cancellation insurance, you are encouraged to contact the insurer of the coverage for further details.

Where can I learn more about COVID-19? I’m getting worried.

  • Manulife offers tips about coronavirus and travel. If you have specific questions about your coverage you can reach Manulife by calling the number on your Manulife benefits card.
  • Your Employee (and family) Assistance Program (EAP) is provided by TELUS Health (formerly LifeWorks). They can provide information about the coronavirus, and about how to cope with the stress that some people may be experiencing because of the outbreak. 

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