A week on from the Trump travel ban, the absurdity of the Executive Order Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States is getting clearer. The Trump U.S. travel ban could harm patients who need care the most. Many patients intended to travel to the USA for cancer treatment, orthopedic and other complex time-sensitive treatments beyond that which the average patient would need. They planned to travel by the most direct route. However, if they were travelling to the US from anywhere other than one of the listed countries (for instance, the UK) the executive order does not apply to them and they should experience no extra checks regardless of their nationality or place of birth.
As CEO of Mercury Healthcare International, I am outraged by this malevolent and discriminatory program and I've mobilized our company to do something about it. As the leader of our company it is my prerogative to have an established position and policy against racism and bigotry and to offer compassion for all people in need of medical care.
If you are a casualty of the recent US travel ban and your plans to access healthcare in the USA have been affected or otherwise interrupted, Mercury Health Travel's GET CARE NOW compassionate assistance program can help you. Our broad international network of thousands of Approved Healthcare Providers, Hospitals and Clinics developed over 34 years and available in hundreds of destinations throughout 105 countries are ready to help you. We have the staffing and capacity to manage as many as 300 cases per week.
This is a 100% humanitarian aide program that we are able to offer, but only for a limited time.
As CEO, I have authored my own Executive Order for our company and have authorized an immediate, full and complete waiver of our medical tourism case management and administration fees for individuals and families affected by Mr Trump's Executive Order. We are a for profit company with a conscience. Every penny we waive impacts our revenues and profit but at a time like this, is the humanitarian thing to do. We'll figure out an alternative and nature will provide the balance - or I personally will take the hit.
Our care coordinators and travel planners are at your disposal and will find you an alternative to the planned care you intended to receive in the USA in this stressful time of need. Our approved providers in 105 other countries outside the USA are ready and able to assist you in destinations outside the USA. Many have agreed to extend hours and grant appointments at times not usually available to accommodate rapid access to care.
I have also authorized our flex clinically-trained staff from other parts of the company to backstop our care coordinators and travel planners to adjust staffing to meet demand as needed.
Our medical providers and facilities are prepared to offer you care in a culturally and linguistically comfortable environment
Our network of carefully inspected, internationally accredited providers and facilities will welcome you and provide care in the following languages:
- Arabic and other Berber languages
GET CARE NOW
Our switchboard is available to take your call around the clock with a live operator.
You will not have to deal with voice mails or wondering if you will get a callback or a timely email response.
If the lines are busy, please try your call again
When you call, you'll be asked for some preliminary information so we can get started helping you right away.
Please be prepared to tell us:
the procedure that was planned or that you intended
the surgeon or specialist and healthcare facility you had originally selected
any purchased travel plans you already had arranged, and
your preferred dates and alternate destinations for care
Our team of professional case managers and care coordinators will help you
We are prepared to handle high volumes of requests for assistance because most of what we do is focused on the corporate market. But in this particular case, for a limited time only - we will open our network at service for anyone displaced by the US travel ban.
Mercury Health Travel's GET CARE NOW compassionate waiver program will remain open until 01 June, 2017
At that time, we will return to normal operations for our corporate clients. In the event the travel ban is not sorted out by 01 June, I will re-evaluate the situation and consider program extension at that time.
Every Mercury Health Travel Approved Provider has been inspected by us and put through rigorous verification of quality, safety according to our criteria.
We will find you an alternative and do everything in our power so you get:
- Rapid access to care
- Alternatives as close to your original budget as possible
- Alternatives as close to the level of quality and service you had previously chosen
When you aren't feeling well or are stressed by health matters, the last thing you need is to add stress with this crazy and malevolent policy that is beyond the scope of influence of the healthcare providers in the USA. Rather than dwell on these political issues, let's focus on getting you the care you need as quickly and effortlessly as possible with as few additional costs as possible. We'll coordinate flights, care, and follow on aftercare. We may even be able to find care at a lower price. What is important right now is to get you back on track on and get you to someone who can help you right away.
If you know someone who needs a "Plan B" and requires rapid access to care for a complex medical condition, please make them aware of this compassionate waiver program.
GET CARE NOW
If the lines are busy, please try your call again
Additional information you should know about the travel ban applicability
Some media misreported that the travel ban was only for direct flights from those seven countries to America.
As we understand that the travel ban, it applies only to passengers on connecting flights making “airside” transfers to America. Anyone who went through passport control between flights at Heathrow, Paris, Frankfurt, etc would “reset the clock” by going “landside”. They would be boarding from a service from the UK, France or Germany, rather than one of the seven listed countries. That sounds easier than it is. When it comes to “Airside” transit at Heathrow, for example, not all nationalities are equal. There are 57 varieties of passports, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe and including all seven specified nationalities, whose citizens require a visa simply to change planes at a UK airport. The only exception is if they have a specific type of visa from another country, such as a US green card. A normal American visa for business or tourism is insufficient. In 2010, I was present when the USA discussed, but never implemented any inbound medical tourism visa as other countries have established.
Our specialists are ready and informed about other possibilities. Sudanese people, for example, can make their way across the border to Eritrea, get a visa on arrival, and then check in at Asmara airport for a flight via Cairo, Dubai or Istanbul to a wide range of US destinations. Iranians, Iraqis, Libyans and the rest can find similar workarounds - for the present time. These loopholes could be closed with a simple additional stroke of a pen. While the Trump travel ban may be as illusory as many other presidential promises, there are plenty of other nations where the barriers to access medical care are real. In Europe, for example, you can be turned away from Serbia if you have a Republic of Kosovo entry stamp in your passport. The same in Israel and GCC nations if you have some objectionable stamps in your passport. Many countries that are mainly Muslim – such as Kuwait, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia – do not allow anyone whose passport indicates they have visited Israel. In our experience, in the past, Israeli border staff were happy not to stamp your passport, though if you are crossing by land from Jordan or Egypt then the exit stamp will pose a problem. If you happen to have been born in Israel, regardless of your nationality, the Foreign Office warns you may not be welcome in Saudi Arabia. India has harsh stipulations for “foreigners of Pakistan and Bangladeshi origins” as well as nationals of those countries. They face a wait of at least seven weeks to obtain a visa.
Mercury Healthcare International and the Mercury Health Travel team of coordinators and planners are informed and prepared to meet and workaround all these political nuances and still find you care within our vast network of rigorously inspected, internationally accredited healthcare facilities and practitioners in countries outside the USA.