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MikeyMisha January 9th, 2008 02:21 PM

Visiting the Doctor on Board Ship
I was wondering if there is a charge if you need to visit the doctor on board for personal reasons, not for an accident or something.

I have a bad back and dont currently treat it with pain killers, but if it flairs up on board I dont want to be in pain while on vacation. Will the Doctor prescribe Pain Killers (narcotic type, i.e. Vicodin) if needed? I ask about Vicodin because when my back acts up, thats the only thing that works for me.


Kuki January 9th, 2008 02:30 PM

There is a pretty significant charge for Dr visits onboard. in the neighborhood of $200 to $250 a visit, plus the cost of any treatment or prescriptions.

I highly recommend purchasing travel insurance before you go that would cover the costs if a visit becomes necessary. There's a mulitude of other reasons to buy insurance.

MikeyMisha January 10th, 2008 01:40 PM

What if someone has an accident on board slipping on a floor or something like that? Do they still charge? I ask becasue when I was on the Pride a couple years ago.....when you walk from the pool to the restroom the floor right inside was so slick that I saw many people fall, one guy even banged his head so hard he started bleeding. I know you should wear a shoe, slipper, or flips but sometimes things happen. would they still charge you for that? I never got to see that guy again on the cruise and what happened with him or what it may have cost.

Do you really think the Insurance is a must? I've heard that you have to submit so much paperwork to "prove" you couldnt go that its almost an impossible hill to climb and many just say to hell with it and eat the loss.

I can see where its cut and dry if you do the air through the cruise line and due to being delayed is nothing you could do to arrive on time.....but I would never take air through the cruise line because you are at their mercy with two or three connections......I prefer to pay the same or even a bit more for a non-stop the early morning of the cruise.


flossy January 25th, 2008 06:24 PM

mickey my advice is never never travell without insurance! :roll: i buy insurance not only to cover the cost of a holiday i can't take but to cover legal and medical costs treatment can cost thousands no matter where you are in the world don't be a fool you wouldn't drive your car without some sort of cover WOULD YOU???? :shock: :-?

frequentcruiser March 9th, 2008 02:28 PM

I have had several experiences, Just recently, on the Noordam, My DH became ill with a headcold. Inasmuch as he is quite elderly (84) I took him to the doc on board. The first visit cost $79 plus a generic cough medicine. They called the next day to see how he was. Two days later, he had not gotten better, so I took him again. $39 for the second visit, plus a generic prescription for doxyciclene. Both those costs will be reimbursed by my personal insurance. Another time, I fell in the Dom Rep, on a cruisline sponsored trip, and went to the doc when I returned to the ship.... no charge. I always get insurance because of my DH's age, but happily, have never used it. And what good would the insurance do if you stayed on the ship. I recently heard about some people who were put off the ship by Carnival because the older gentleman was complaining about chest pain. They put the guy off in Roatan, and it took them 2 days to get home. and btw, had no insurance. The article warned, "be careful what you tell the doctor on board". I have only had good experiences although on our trip around south america, we saw a passenger being taken off the ship in some god-forsaken place in Argentina. Hopefully, there were planes out of there because the next day we were in Ushuaia, where there are plenty of planes to big cities.

My2cents April 19th, 2008 10:40 PM

My Experience w/Ship's Doctor
I fell on the wet floor, just inside from the pool deck (I hadn't been outside yet...floor was wet from those who were coming inside), and was wearing tennis shoes and shorts. I slid across the slick/wet tile and the metal strip connecting the tile and attached carpeting stopped taking all the skin off my knee!

I was bleeding profusely and in agony. People passing by went to alert a crew member and after about 10 minutes...a wheelchair came for me and took me to the ship's doctor. I was bandaged, given some light pain meds and stayed all night and the next day in my cabin. I then got pain in my back and shoulder from falling on my hands and knees so hard on the tile...went back to the ship's doctor who gave me an injection of toradol. The rest of the cruise was tolerable, although I couldn't swim in the lovely carribean...or do many of the other things I'd planned. I wasn't billed for any of the medical care. I didn't expect to be charged, as the cruise line was responsible for not keeping the floor dry!

I do now carry travel insurance for all cruises, because of an experince prior to to a cruise - three days prior to a southern carribean cruise...I hurt myself in the gym and the next day, couldn't get out of bed without help. I had a $3500.00 non-fundable cruise fare and $1200.00 RT airfare paid, and I hadn't taken out insurance, so I went on the cruise anyway, wearing a tens unit (wires and electric box) and on heavy pain killers and muscle relaxers the whole week. Couldn't do much of anything. Had I taken out the insurance...I could have canceled the cruise, gotten all my money back and gone another time. It was a hard lesson to learn. Take out the insurance, as you never know what might happen.

frequentcruiser April 20th, 2008 08:51 AM

You are so right about the insurance. We had reservations for a trip to the Mediterranean when my DH became ill, and the money was refunded. My DH is 84 yrs old, so I wouldn't consider making a reservation without insurance. We were on a Celebrity in the Carib one time and a woman at our table came with her girlfriend because her husband had died since she booked the cruise and she had no insurance so she made the trip with her girlfriend. Probably not a bad ting to do, actually. Get away and relax, but have insurance.

CA Cruiser April 20th, 2008 09:16 AM

DH has a bad back too, two surgeries. Bring your prescription meds from home and lots of motrin. He finds if he takes motrin before lots of activity he is fine. We just booked a last minute 3 day cruise for next month and bought trip insurance. With our 3 sons in the military and an elderly parent, you never know what can happen. We just gave our ages, where we were going, # of days and cost of trip. We didn't have to submit any paperwork. Happy cruising.

NY Cruisin Mama May 29th, 2008 09:55 PM

Definately take your pain meds from home. (you want to be sure you are
getting the proper medication) plus it will be cheaper to have the scripts
filled at home rather than out of town. We were in Florida years ago when
our children were small and my son had a terrible ear infection (probably intensified by the airplane ride).. My MIL's
family doctor saw us (fit us in) but charged me $ 200 for the office call
and $ 125 for the meds. and that was in the states. (My insurance did
reimburse me later).

My husband came down with Montezuma's revenge while on a Princess
cruise in the Caribbean - no charge for the dr. visit or meds - as there
were other passengers suffering with the same thing. But he WAS quarentined to our cabin for 72 hours. Thank God for the balcony !!!

By the way, unless we are dying with the above - I am not going to
call the ship's doctor. I will just bring along the proper meds in case.

billbelt July 9th, 2009 11:29 AM

Doctor Visit
In all of our cruises we have had to visit the doctor three times. Each time there was charge. Our medical insurance (Blue Cross) refused to pay each time. We appealed and got a partial payment on one of the charges.We found the charges in line with local office charges. As some other writers have suggested might be a good idea to purchase insurance before leaving. There is a site on the internet where you can compare several insurance/travel policies and purchase just exactly what you need,

colorcrazie July 10th, 2009 03:49 PM

Check your personal medical insurance to see if it will cover out of country medical treatments or not. If not, buy the travel insurance. You can only buy the medical and evacuation insurance part, which is a lot cheap than full insurance plan. You will just need to explain what you want to their service rep when you buy it.
A few years ago, I fell while on a HAL cruise. Wet, soapy water on a marble floor with no signs or anything. They insisted I see the ship's doc, but no charges. So, all I lost was a little bit of my day.

vi reynolds August 8th, 2009 09:57 PM

Oh, I posted but lost a relatively long one, never mind!

Anyhow, well, I would certainly advise taking insurance, especially after my last experience.

Okay, none of us got sick onboard, two over 60s, 2 late 20s and a baby. However, my husband got very sick immediately after our cruise, like within 48 hours. Okay, we were back in the US (NYC) incidentally which we intended to show my parents after the cruise properly (we're Brits living in NY state) but well, Dan got really bad stomach pains, as in really bad that turned out to be due to an already ruptured appendix. He had surgery straight away and he's fine and now back at work. I can't help but wonder what would have happened if this had happened at the onset of the cruise.... We were heavily insured but what about facilities?? What would they had done??? We were two days from NYC when he felt sick. He didn't tell us though because it wasn't so bad yet and then got better and then worse and well we were in NY anyway but what if...

colorcrazie August 9th, 2009 02:37 PM

If something happens that is outside of the ship's ability to treat, they will either turn around to the nearest US port or, if that is not feasible, call for a medivac helicopter. That is what can really add up, as intens of thousands of dollars. So, we always buy insurance for at least medical and medical evacuation. Even with good primary insurance that does cover out of the country, nonewill cover medivac except travel insurance. It is actually very cheap. Around $50 for two of us for 7 days, as example.

vi reynolds August 9th, 2009 03:58 PM


Originally Posted by colorcrazie
If something happens that is outside of the ship's ability to treat, they will either turn around to the nearest US port or, if that is not feasible, call for a medivac helicopter. That is what can really add up, as intens of thousands of dollars. So, we always buy insurance for at least medical and medical evacuation. Even with good primary insurance that does cover out of the country, nonewill cover medivac except travel insurance. It is actually very cheap. Around $50 for two of us for 7 days, as example.

I really have to agree with this. The fact that he got sick so soon afterwards made me wonder a lot.

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