What many people are starting to learn is that there are huge range of epilepsies (at least 30 medically recognised forms) and that each of them will have seizures triggered by different events. Gone are the days where all epileptics are warned to “look away now” when scenes featuring flashing lights were imminent on TV – but there is plenty more to be done to prevent this pigeon-holing.
Travelling is one part of life that epileptics can feel more comfortable about. Airline staff are generally very knowledgeable when it comes to dealing with seizures on a flight, should they happen. Most airlines will be able to arrange special seating requirements should you want them and the majority should have the necessary medical equipment to deal with a standard seizure.
A lot of epileptics will find that seizures can be triggered by fatigue, excitement or anxiety and are therefore more at risk of suffering from one when travelling abroad. Whether or not this dissuades anyone from flying is a personal choice – but it is worth remembering that there isn’t much space in which to recover on a plane.
Ideally, epileptics will travel with a friend or a colleague who is aware of how to treat seizures when they occur. If not, it is definitely worth carrying a Medic-Alert bracelet and written details of what to do should a seizure happen. In-flight staff should be more than happy to accept these details and make the flight as comfortable as you would expect.
Although there are a few exceptions, the travel insurance industry generally doesn’t appear to be as clued up about epilepsy as it could be. There are plenty of mainstream insurers who are more than happy to offer policies to epileptics, but the majority of these policies won’t cover customers for expenses incurred as a result of their epilepsy. Others might charge through the nose to cover a range of epilepsy-related incidents.
Thankfully, over the last few years, a small range of specialist insurers have emerged to change all that. These specialist insurers make the effort to learn as much as possible about pre-existing medical conditions so that they can get the right information about them from customers, gain a better view of the risk they prevent and charge them accordingly.
The odds of epileptics requiring hospital treatment abroad will vary from person to person. Specialist insurers understand that epilepsy is a very unique condition which affects everyone differently.
Hopefully, initiatives like National Epilepsy Week will one day help this become the norm across the insurance industry.
About the author: Ervin Palmer is a part-time writer, working in a limited company and loves to travel a lot. Here he mentioned about specific cancer travel insurance for those who are suffering from cancer.