What Do You Do If You Get Sick While Working Outside the Country?

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Being sick is no picnic, especially if you’re working abroad.

Not only will you have to deal with your sickness on your own, but you may have difficulty in getting the right kind of medical attention you need. Especially if you’re coming down with something that needs hospitalization and more.

However, if you’ve got international or expat health insurance, you shouldn’t have anything to worry about.

Just go to the nearest healthcare provider with your international insurance information and you should be seen to right away, with every expense taken care of.

But what about those times where you don’t necessarily need urgent care, but are still feeling too sick to work? For such cases, do the following:

1. Call in sick.

If you’re feeling off or feeling under the weather – while not suffering from any serious symptoms such as chest pain, bleeding, or inability to breathe – then maybe all you need is a day or two of strict bed rest to heal up.

Call your workplace in advance, tell them that you’re unable to go to work for the day, and rest.

Don’t do anything strenuous doing this period, just get as much bed rest that you can.

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2. Keep yourself fed and hydrated.

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While it may be hard to get up and eat or even drink water while you’re sick, it’s important that you don’t let yourself starve or go thirsty while you’re resting.

If you have a friend or roommate you can call on to help you, have them assist you in getting you the food and liquids that you need during this time.

Make your choices as plain as possible, such as bread, soup, or crackers. Avoid rich or spicy foods as they may turn your stomach and make you even sicker.

3. Visit a doctor.

If you feel that you’re not improving even with rest, then it may be time to visit a doctor. Have yourself get driven to a nearby general practitioner or clinic, don’t try to drive yourself to it.

Tell the doctor about your symptoms as plainly and as clearly as you can.

If there’s a significant language barrier you can’t cross, seek the help of a local friend or use your smartphone apps to help translate how you’re feeling.

If your place of employment requires a doctor’s note for sick leaves, make sure you ask for one before leaving with your prescription.

4. Take your prescription as directed.

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If you’ve been prescribed medicine from your doctor’s visit, make sure to take it as the doctor ordered. Do your best to take your doses on time.

Also, make sure that you finish your prescribed round of medicines even if you feel better, especially when it comes to antibiotics.

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5. Don’t go to work sick.

Only return when you’re clear of symptoms.

Working sick may not only expose your coworkers to whatever’s gotten you under the weather, but it can also be a cause of workplace accidents that can cause significant damage and injury. Especially if your work involves physical labor or construction.

However, if you work in an office and there are deadlines to catch, you can either telecommute (i.e. working from home) or simply report to work but with a face mask instead, to prevent the spreading of germs.

Everyone gets sick now and then, that’s just a normal part of working life no matter where you are. However, just because it’s normal doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take care of yourself or handle your responsibilities when it happens.

By doing the above steps you should be able to get back on your feet in no time flat, and without having to deal with any potential issues at work that your absence may cause.

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