The vast majority (95.3%) of Canadians who purchased individual travel health insurance policies had their claims paid, says a report based on a KPMG survey and commissioned by the Travel Health Insurance Association (THIA).

Respondents indicate that the amount of claims paid to more than 103,000 insured travellers exceeded $138 million.

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However, another THIA survey finds 18% of Canadians have inadvertently provided inaccurate health information on travel health insurance forms — something that can void an insurance policy. And 14% have deliberately provided inaccurate health information on travel insurance applications, with half of those admitting they did so to receive a lower rate. Only 33% have reviewed medical forms with a physician when applying for travel health insurance.

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“Responding accurately to medical forms is the best way to have a carefree holiday and ensure that unexpected medical expenses will be covered by insurance,” says THIA president Alex Bittner. “Provincial health plans only pay for approximately 9% of out-of-country medical costs. If there is a medical questionnaire, it needs to be taken seriously.”

The top two reasons for denied claims include medical non-disclosure and misrepresentation, and for pre-existing conditions that were not stable, as required by policies.