It has come to attention that many Swedes who are already permanently residing in Thailand are finding it hard to get the adequate health insurance. Each and everyone has a different case but the bottom line is that they are given two options – either to opt not to have an insurance at all or to pay high costs when time comes that they are almost into retirement years. They are now appealing into the Swedish Government to review their cases.
According to Swedish laws, for a person to be covered by the national health insurance, it is required that a person must be living in Sweden and must be in the country for more than half a year annually. Some Swedes claim that this arrangement is not possible because of their health while some thinks that it is an unfair policy since they are also paying pension taxes in Sweden.
One case is that of Ake Andersson who is 75 year old and already retired. He decided to live in Thailand for good since 2007. Andersson shared that he is suffering from rheumatism for more than 25 years already. When he was still in Sweden, he takes medication in order to stop the pain but after staying I Thailand for good, the climate helped him and rendered the medication useless. For him, staying in Thailand all year is very important but with this arrangement he will not be getting health insurance from the Swedish government. This is despite the fact that he is paying a 20 per cent tax from his pension.
Twenty years ago, when he was first diagnosed with rheumatism, Andersson was allowed by the government to live in Spain and he still has the state insurance while there. It changed when the health care for the joint European Union was taken into effect. Now, there is no health insurance for him while living in Thailand as a retiree.
Andersson is only one of the many cases and many of them are still hoping that one of these days the Swedish Government will listen to their pleas and be granted with health insurance while living in Thailand.