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Special Feature: CG knows the importance of Medevac care

Beth Frazier, CG Insurance Chief Operating Officer - Health

In 2021, CG conducted more than 120 medical evacuations of CG Members to overseas hospitals where they received critical, often lifesaving emergency care.

Medical evacuations, or medevacs as they are known, is one of many responsibilities CG performs as an insurer, and they stand as the most dramatic demonstration of what CG does to protect the wellbeing of its members.

Medical evacuations are activated when someone is severely injured or becomes acutely ill and needs to be flown overseas to a hospital for treatment not available locally. They are part of the reality of living in our island communities, hundreds if not thousands of miles from major medical centres. Medevacs are often unexpected events, but it is important to be prepared, should they ever become a reality.

That, in effect, is what insurance is all about – protection from the unexpected – and why CG’s major medical coverage includes Emergency Medical Air Evacuation. In providing this coverage, it’s important that CG Members, and those in our communities, understand how medevacs work and how they have an important role to play to help things go smoothly should a medevac ever be a necessity.

There are a lot of moving parts to a medevac and, over the years, CG has invested a lot of time, energy and resources to make sure they proceed in a manner that is safe, seamless and quick. This includes a Medevac Department, which operates on a 24/7, 365-day basis to act immediately when needed.

The Medevac staff work as a team of super-coordinators, linking every aspect of the patient transfer into a seamless movement from one jurisdiction to another while ensuring continuous medical care. They manage logistical and medical communications between all parties, from air ambulance and flight planning to ground transportation and border clearance in the US and other countries. They handle all the administrative paperwork between the discharging and receiving facilities as well as travel documents for patients and their in-flight companions.

This Medevac team, in short, are experts at getting through the red tape that inevitably stands in the way of every flight. They are on-call, much like a ‘SWAT team’, and are specialists in getting people the help they need, when they need it. Their expertise was especially demonstrated during the COVID pandemic when borders were locked down and strictest measures were imposed on incoming flights. In every case, the CG team was able to organize Covid testing and documentation to make sure members were received at treatment centres without delay.

The team’s skills, experience and dedication make them industry leaders as identified by various organizations the CG team works with.

Gilbert A. Darrell of Bermuda Air Ambulance said of CG-managed medevacs: ‘working as a partner with CG Insurance has been a great experience. The team is very professional, easy to work with and knowledgeable. We are excited and thankful to have such a great company to do business with.’

Mark Chapman of Medway Air Ambulance in Georgia says the CG Medevac team is ‘amazing to work with on the front and back side of Medical Evacuations. The process is seamless and well communicated. The CG team is easy to get in touch with and assists in any unforeseen roadblocks that may come up.’

Suen Williams-Palmer of Reva Inc. in Fort Lauderdale said the CG Team is ‘very devoted to their customers and work tirelessly to get them the care they need. They are very dedicated to their customers and always go above and beyond for them.’

Ms Theresias’s reference to timely updates touches on one of the biggest challenges in managing medevacs: the emotions of the people involved. Loved ones experiencing the shock of the situation can be overwhelmed by the uncertainties and the stress. The fact is that people want to know, and understand, what’s happening. That includes enroute care, details of flights, immigration clearance, hotels and hospital location. Ultimately, they want to know their loved one is getting where they need to be and assurance that they’re in good hands. Just as important as the coordination of the medevac itself, so is the communication.

The CG team understands the importance of keeping people informed and places a high value on the necessity of communicating clearly in real time as the medevac process is underway, even organizing conference calls when needed.

Another challenge that is often experienced in the medevac process is the known location of Member travel documents, such as passports, COVID records and Visas. In some cases, not only are these documents not prepared, they are also unfound. This can lead to delays at a time when time is most valuable. It is strongly encouraged that Members keep their travel documents current and in a known location. It is also advised to tell a friend or family member where these documents live, should they ever need to be collected on your behalf.

At CG, it’s our priority and mission to protect and educate our clients for the unexpected. CG takes pride in being a people-first company and I believe that commitment is perfectly reflected in the quality of care that is taken during a medevac. CG has always, and will continue to deliver superior insurance solutions that enhance lives and security in an uncertain world.

About Coralisle Group Ltd.

Coralisle Group Ltd. is a Bermuda-based holding company for the Coralisle Group of Companies (CG or the Group), which has commercial operations in Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, The Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands, Barbados and the Turks and Caicos Islands. The Group comprises independently incorporated companies in these jurisdictions offering property and casualty insurance, employee benefits for pensions and health, life assurance and personal investment products and has received an A rating from AM Best. The Group draws commercial strength from the cohesion of a group of companies accessing a variety of skills, experience and local knowledge in different jurisdictions.