Getting care while traveling

Traveling During the Holidays? Here’s Your Guide to Getting Care

It’s the time of year when families pack up their bags and hit the road (or the skies!) to get together with loved ones. There are a lot of things to worry about, like traffic and flight cancellations, but one thing you don’t need to stress over is finding health care when you need it. Whether your travels take you to the other side of the state or the other side of the country, Blue Cross is here to help you find the care you need if an illness gets in the way of your holiday travels.

If you or a family member need immediate attention for a life-threatening condition, always go to the nearest emergency room. For all non-emergency situations – like a minor illness or injury – there are plenty of choices for finding care while you’re away from home.

In-Person Care

Whether you’re in the next town over or visiting a place warmer than Michigan, you can find care at a retail health clinic or urgent care center. These locations offer an in-person consultation with a medical professional.

  • Retail health clinic: If you’re looking for one stop shopping, you can have a quick in-person evaluation and receive any necessary prescriptions in one visit—many offer weekend and evening hours. The physician assistants and certified nurse practitioners can help you on your way to feeling better, such as when you have a sore throat. To find a retail health clinic that accepts your plan, simply log in to your Blue Cross member account.
  • Urgent care center: When you are dealing with more complicated symptoms, like a swollen ankle after you slipped on an icy patch, an urgent care center is a good option for care. They also have convenient evening and weekend hours for in-person consultations and access to labs for testing and x-rays. Log in to your Blue Cross member account to find an urgent care near you.

Virtually Anywhere

Vacations can be easily spoiled by a runny nose or achy back. If your holiday travel schedule is hectic, you can still talk to a health professional using Blue Cross Online VisitsSM and the 24-Hour Nurse Line.

  • Blue Cross Online Visits: Using your smartphone, laptop or tablet, sign-up or log on to Blue Cross Online Visits account to quickly connect to a licensed health care provider over a secure, web-based video chat. You don’t need to make an appointment and you can talk to a doctor in 10 minutes or less. You can even get a prescription if you need it.
  • 24-Hour Nurse Line: At no cost to Blue Cross members, a registered nurse is waiting for your call anytime day or night. Able to help over the phone, they can answer your questions regarding symptoms and help point you in the right direction for any next-steps in care.

Not sure when to use one of these convenient choices? Treatable symptoms include:

  • Mild allergy symptoms
  • Sore throat and cough
  • Colds and flu
  • Low-grade fever
  • Earache
  • Eye irritation or redness
  • Skin rash
  • Painful urination

Learn more about primary care and your other choices when it’s not an emergency at bcbsm.com/findcare.

If your holiday plans include traveling internationally, it’s good to consider travel medical insurance plans through GeoBlue. A GeoBlue plan can help make sure you have peace of mind anywhere in the world with access to complete, reliable and convenient protection of your health while abroad. 

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Photo credit: Dean Drobot

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