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New rules set to help travellers with medical conditions access insurance

New rules set to help travellers with medical conditions access insurance

Travel insurance firms may have to direct customers with medical conditions to providers that can cover them, under new rules proposed by the financial regulator.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) estimates that up to 14.1 million consumers with pre-existing medical conditions look to buy travel insurance every year. It says that 0.7% of these consumers are denied cover, and 11% buy a policy that excludes their condition. 

Some travellers are also cancelling trips or paying over the odds for their policies, according to the FCA, and it wants consumers to be offered a directory of providers that cover those with existing medical conditions. 

It also wants to improve understanding of travel insurance for those with medical conditions, including the implications of travelling with exclusions and the cost of medical care in different countries. 

See our Travel insurance for those with pre-existing conditions guide for more info on how to find affordable cover.

What are the proposals?

Under the proposed rules, firms will need to point consumers to a directory of travel insurance providers that are able to offer cover to those with more serious existing medical conditions. 

Firms would need to direct consumers in the following situations: 

  • When a consumer is refused or not offered cover, or their cover is cancelled during their insurance term, as a result of an existing condition. 

  • When a consumer is offered cover that excludes their condition, and the exclusion can't be removed

  • When a consumer is offered cover that has an extra charge due to their condition, on top of their premium. 

The FCA will consult on these proposals until Sunday 15 September.