Foreigners may be required to present a medical insurance policy upon entering Russia
According to the newspaper Kommersant, the Russian Ministry of Health has prepared and proposed for public discussion amendments to the law “On procedure of exit from Russia and entry to Russia”. The Ministry proposed to oblige the foreigners to present a medical insurance policy when crossing the border. Foreigners who do not present the policy at the checkpoint won’t be allowed to enter Russia.
It is assumed that the sum of insurance should be 2 million rubles and cover health care services in emergency and urgent forms. If the exact term of the foreigner's stay in the country cannot be set, the validity period of the medical insurance policy should be not less than 90 days from the date of entry to the country. According to the Ministry, the policy must be made in Russian and/or English languages.
The obligation of foreigners to have medical insurance policy is mentioned in the current version of the law, however, the validity period of the policy and its coverage amount are not determined. Currently, foreigners are required to present a medical insurance only at the consulate while applying for a visa. The absence of this document is not a reason of the prohibition to enter Russia.
At the moment, the project of the Ministry of Health raises many questions. In particular, it does not state where exactly foreigners should buy insurance and how the border guards will check it. According to the head of the Interregional Union of Medical Insurers Dmitry Kuznetsov, a mandatory insurance policy proposed by the Russian Ministry of Health may cost about 10 000 rubles, and millions foreigners planning to visit the country will have to buy it. In addition, the requirement to purchase a medical insurance policy to enter the country may cause similar requirements for Russian citizens traveling abroad.