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"Before traveling overseas, look at your health insurance card. If it shows only an 800 or 888 number for precertification of hospital admissions, call that number and obtain the local number with an area code. Many 800 numbers can't be dialed from foreign countries. I learned this the hard way during an emergency hospital admission in Switzerland. I could have avoided the delay in reaching my carrier." —Chris Carveth, Orange, Conn.

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