Registration with SOSThe University of Texas at Arlington puts the health and safety of students, faculty and staff as the top priority when traveling abroad. The Office of International Education recognizes that in this rapidly changing world, you may have apprehension about travel, security, and health. It may be challenging for you to contact UTA staff while traveling on some programs, should something unexpected occur. It is for these reasons that UTA has contracted for travel assistance and evacuation services from a company called International SOS.
The International SOS network of services for immediate help in any emergency is offered to you via UTA. Services range from telephone advice and referrals to full-scale evacuation by private air ambulance. The SOS network of multilingual critical care and aero-medical specialists operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year from SOS Alarm Centers around the world. Your SOS membership, provided by UTA, is additional protection against unexpected difficulties that can arise when you are away from home. They are designed to supplement the policies, procedures and support that UTA already has in place, as well as your personal international medical insurance.
While you are abroad, you should always attempt to communicate with the UTA Study Abroad Office staff as instructed during your pre-departure orientation. If you are traveling, and/or in a situation where you are not able to contact UTA, you should contact SOS who will begin to meet your needs immediately, while coordinating services with UTA. Please be aware that some of the services outlined below which SOS provides have additional charges.
While the services listed below are comprehensive, International SOS is not international health insurance. UTA has contracted with International SOS to offer our students the highest possible level of travel, medical and security advice, as well as on-line access to information which many insurance companies do not offer. By registering with International SOS, students participating in a UTA Study Abroad Program, or other UTA-sponsored program abroad, are automatically enrolled in the UT System Study Abroad Insurance Program.
Benefits of SOS
- Emergency evacuation
- Medically-supervised repatriation
- Companion ticket
- Additional travel and accommodation arrangements after medical evacuation
- Repatriation of mortal remains
- Return home of minor children
- Medical monitoring
- Inpatient admission and identification of receiving physician
- Emergency and routine medical advice
- Pre-trip information on travel health issues (Country Guides)
- Medical and dental referrals
- Outpatient referrals
- Outpatient case management
- Claims assistance
- Outpatient medical expense guarantee and payment
- Inpatient medical expense guarantee, cost review and payment
- Dispatch of medication and medical supplies
- Legal referrals
- Emergency message transmission
- Translations and interpreters
- Lost document advice
- Ground transportation and accommodation for accompanying family members
- Emergency personal cash advances
International SOS Clinics
- Security evacuation assistance
- Online travel security information
- Access to security crisis center
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the role of International SOS?
- International SOS provides you with worldwide quality health care and emergency assistance services 24 hours a day designed to supplement and integrate with UTA services, procedures and policies. You should always attempt to notify UTA on-site emergency contacts first, who will assist you.
- International SOS provides you and your family with peace of mind. One phone call connects you to the International SOS network of multilingual specialists for immediate help in an emergency. International SOS services are designed to help you with medical, personal, travel, security information and legal referrals when away from home. Call International SOS at any time to speak with a physician or security specialist about simple or critical matters.
- Carry the International SOS membership card with you at all times. This card is provided at the mandatory pre-departure orientation. It includes the telephone numbers of the three major worldwide International SOS Alarm Centers. In the event of an emergency, call one of the emergency phone numbers listed on the card.
- In addition to calling the Alarm Center for any pre-trip questions you may have, you can so access Country and Security Guides from their website.
In addition to the information covered at the Pre-Departure Sessions and on-site orientation conducted by UTA, the SOS comprehensive guides provide both medical, security and general travel advice, such as information on the standard of health care, how to pay for medical care, the availability of medications, safety of the blood supply, embassy/visa information, dialing code information, cultural etiquette and financial and voltage/plug information.
Do I need to activate my membership?
- Your membership is activated by registering your travel through MyTrips. Simply carry the card at all times while traveling. Whenever you need service, contact one of the emergency phone numbers listed on the back of the card.
You can also create a personal Emergency Record Summary with SOS into which you can save medical, family and emergency information. In addition to advising UTA staff of your non-UTA travel you can also put this information into your account, which would be accessible by SOS staff in case of an emergency. Unless you input your information into an account it will not be available for staff. Medical and personal information can only be accessed by an SOS doctor.
What are Email Alerts?
- You have the option to sign up for Email Alerts. You can choose to sign up for medical and/or security alerts by logging on and signing up. Medical alerts are issued when there is an unusual health risk that, in the opinion of the SOS Medical staff, may negatively impact travelers or expatriates visiting a country. Security alerts are issued when SOS Security professionals have identified a security risk in a specific country.
- You should first activate the UTA on-site emergency support network for your location. If you are traveling, or in a situation where you cannot activate the UTA staff, you should then contact SOS. The International SOS Alarm Centers are listed on the back of your card. Call the International SOS Alarm Center that is nearest to you for a referral to a doctor who speaks your language.
- Call the nearest International SOS Alarm Center for legal referrals. If you are in a situation where you require legal assistance, on-site UTA faculty should be informed of this immediately.
- If you require a prescription that a local physician cannot obtain, or you need to replace lost, stolen or depleted medication, International SOS will, when permissible by local law, send the needed medication to you.
- In most cases, UTA faculty should be able to assist you. However, if you are in a situation or location where you cannot reach UTA faculty, call the nearest International SOS Alarm Center. International SOS will immediately take steps to evaluate the care you are receiving and determine what actions must be taken to ensure your safe and speedy recovery. SOS will notify UTA faculty immediately if you have not already done so.
- If you are hospitalized in an area where adequate medical facilities are not available, International SOS will obtain approval from UTA to evacuate you to a medical facility capable of providing the required care. A physician supervises evacuations, and when necessary, a medical specialist or nurse will accompany you during the evacuation. An air ambulance will be used when required.
- When your condition is stabilized and International SOS has determined that it is medically advisable to bring you home or to a facility near your permanent residence, International SOS will again obtain approval from UTA and arrange the repatriation under medical supervision.
- After approval from UTA, International SOS will guarantee and pay all costs associated with your medical care, then invoice you for reimbursement. International SOS will also medically monitor and evaluate your condition and ongoing medical expenses during your hospitalization. In situations where medical care is critical, by activating SOS you authorize medical care as necessary, and acknowledge that SOS will bill you for such care.
- International SOS will render all assistance possible to UTA to obtain clearances and arrange transportation for the return of mortal remains. In such an event, UTA will be the point of contact for the family in this situation.