I know the last thing you want is yet another health insurance plan, but it might be time to think about sports insurance for kids. For the most part, your regular health insurance plan will cover injuries and physicals, but you might want to check your plan for sports insurance coverage for kids.

When I was a kid, my mom always urged my siblings and me to “go out and play.” She practically begged us to get out of the house. Sometimes we ran loose around the neighborhood, but we also joined organized sports teams.

Competitive sports can teach teamwork, give children a physical outlet, provide hours of amusement, and create strong friendships. But as anyone who has ended up in the emergency room with a child understands, sports activities can also lead to injury.

It’s stressful enough when dealing with a medical emergency or sports injury. Don’t get caught at the doctor’s office without the proper health care coverage. Having a comprehensive health insurance plan will help you focus on achieving financial goals, rather than paying off medical bills.

Do I need to purchase a special sports coverage health insurance plan for my child?

I recently talked with the claims department of one of our major carriers, and I was told that there are no exclusions with regard to specific sporting activities. That said, you should always double-check your specific coverage with your agent.

There are plans in the marketplace that cater toward sports activities for kids, and participating on the after-school soccer team may require different coverage than that for a competitive gymnast or BMX rider.

Is your child’s sports physical covered under your insurance plan?

When your child decides that he or she wants to enroll in a competitive sport, you should strongly consider taking him or her for a sports physical first (this may be required by the school district or sports organization). If you have health insurance, this exam should be covered, though depending on the type of plan you have, it may be subject to either a co-pay or a deductible.

Is your child covered when traveling for games or tournaments?

Coverage may depend on where your child is traveling. If the travel is local, or if it is within the United States, your child will most likely be covered under your existing plan. Before traveling, check your plan for out-of-area coverage and restrictions.

There are traditional plans that will allow for emergency visits in the event of injury. However, you should consult with your agent and the plan design to ensure there are no exclusions when it comes to specific sports activities.

If your child will be traveling internationally, you may want to consider getting travel insurance. There are very comprehensive plans for extremely competitive pricing out there, so this is an option worth investigating.

Does my child need to have insurance information on file with the team or school?

Your child’s school athletic department will typically request proof of health insurance to avoid difficulty in seeking medical treatment in the event of an injury. Check with your child’s school and ask about its procedure for emergency response in the event of injury.

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Linda Rey is a licensed insurance agent at Rey Insurance with a broad spectrum of expertise in life, accident, health, property and casualty insurance as well as retirement planning and college funding strategies.

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