Go back to the blog 12.08.2018

Robert's story

Imagine living on a remote Indonesian island and being seriously ill. You go to the nearest hospital and it turns out they have limited facilities. What now? Our long-time partner Now Health International reports on how they helped one of their clients by evacuating him to Singapore as quickly as possible.

As an American living and working abroad in Indonesia, Robert’s employer purchased a Now Health International Advance plan to give him access to top quality medical treatment both locally and globally.

In April 2018 Robert started experiencing a pain in his right leg and was admitted to a local hospital in Timika, where he was living in Indonesia. He was diagnosed with Cellulitis, a serious bacterial infection of the skin and tissue; as the local hospital had limited facilities his doctor recommend he be evacuated to a larger, specialist hospital for treatment.

Now Health International immediately identified a specialist infectious disease doctor in Jakarta and secured clearance for Robert to be evacuated on a commercial business class flight within 48 hours. However Robert’s condition continued to worsen and he developed a severe fever so, in consultation with his doctors, it was agreed that he should instead be immediately evacuated to Raffles Hospital in Singapore – a world class medical facility within the Now Health provider network.

We arranged for a doctor to escort Robert on a flight to Singapore the following day and for an ambulance to collect him on arrival at Changi Airport. Once he was admitted to Raffles Hospital, Now Health stayed in constant touch with Robert’s medical team to update on his progress and next steps. Robert’s Advance plan entitled him to direct billing, meaning he did not need to pay any costs up front for either his flights or hospital admission.

After ten days of successful treatment, Robert was finally discharged and Now Health International arranged for his repatriation back home to Indonesia.

Robert said “The Now Health team were a great support throughout my illness – from the initial diagnosis, through to my evacuation to Singapore, and later arranging for me to return home to Timika. Despite travelling to Singapore alone for my treatment, the whole team and medical staff made me feel like I was surrounded by friends. I hadn’t ever expected to use the ‘international’ element of my insurance plan, but it was reassuring to know that despite living in an area with limited medical facilities, I was able to access excellent care at one of the best international hospitals in South East Asia”.

Dr Shabrina, Head of Clinical Services at Now Health, added “When Robert’s condition deteriorated we knew we had to act quickly; within hours the team were able to change plans and switch the evacuation to Singapore instead of Jakarta, ensuring Robert could quickly access the treatment he needed. It’s always welcome news to hear that a customer is fully recovered and can return home, and rewarding to know that you’ve played a part in making that possible!”.

This post first appeared on the Now Health Blog on July 12, 2018. © Now Health International - one of our valued long-term partners in the field of international health insurance plans.