GEORGIA: mandatory insurance of tourists is required to protect the state healthcare system

3 October 2019 — Marina MAGNAVAL
Due to increasing spending on tourists, who visit the country without insurance policies, within the Georgian healthcare system, Georgia plans to start discussions on mandatory insurance for tourists, according to Devi KHECHINASHVILI, Head of Insurance Association of Georgia, as Georgia Today reports.

"As we, Georgians, need travel insurance when we go abroad, I think we need to ask the same of foreign tourists visiting our country. It doesn't matter where they buy this insurance, the main thing is having adequate limits for medical expenses," KHECHINASHVILI said.

As the Head of Insurance Association explained, the number of tourists is increasing. At the same time, nobody controls compliance with the existing normative act on insurance at the border. This leads to that in emergency cases the state is obliged to serve uninsured tourists free of charge, which significantly affects the state budget. Thus, new regulations should protect interests of both the tourists and the state healthcare system.

For the period from January to July, 2019 - 2,697,624 of tourists (+8% y-o-y) and 4,961,918 international travelers (+7.8%) visited Georgia. The majority of international travelers came from Azerbaijan, Russia, Turkey and Armenia.

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