Medical Care

If an American citizen becomes seriously ill or injured abroad, a U. S. consular officer can assist in locating appropriate medical services and informing family and friends. If necessary, a consular officer can also assist in the transfer of funds from the United States. However, payment of hospital and other expenses is the responsibility of the traveler. U.S. embassies and consulates abroad maintain lists of hospitals and physicians. Here is a list of U.S. Embassy and Consulate Websites from around the world. For more medical information while abroad, visit

Read through the Country Background Notes and Country Specific Information on the country you plan to visit to make sure you are aware of prevalent illnesses, water and food conditions, and current travel warnings

All travelers should familiarize themselves with conditions at their destination that could affect their health (high altitude or pollution, types of medical facilities, required immunizations, availability of required pharmaceuticals, etc.). The key resource for health information is the Travelers’ Health page of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website. The CDC Website also provides general guidance on health precautions, such as safe food and water precautions and insect-bite protection. The CDC also maintains an international travelers' hotline at 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747) or, by fax, at 1-888-CDC-FAXX (1-888-232-3299).

Check your overseas medical insurance coverage: Ask your medical insurance company if your policy applies overseas, and if it covers emergency expenses such as medical evacuation. If it does not, consider supplemental insurance.

There are health insurance policies designed specifically to cover travel. Many travel agents and private companies offer insurance plans that will cover health care expenses incurred overseas including emergency services such as medical evacuations. The names of some of the companies offering short-term health and emergency assistance policies are listed on the Bureau of Consular Affairs website.

For more information on health and medical care abroad, visit Travel.State.Gov.