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Fall in Italy

Location: Italy

Danielle Pleines left her university in the U.S. to participate in a study abroad program in Italy. This was an opportunity to not only further her education, but also to be immersed in a foreign culture and experience it first hand. All was going as planned until a few weeks from the end of the semester, when a horrible accident occurred.

Prior to Danielle's trip, her parents had purchased Italian healthcare coverage, an ISTC student travel card, and had their normal U.S. domestic health insurance plan. It was their purchase of a CMI Insurance student travel policy from FrontierMEDEX that became the best investment they could have made.

In the town of Sorrento, Danielle fell 30 feet onto a concrete roof. The local Italian fire department was called to rescue her and take her to the nearest hospital. Danielle's injuries were severe and extensive and included a fractured vertebra, a malleolus fracture of her right ankle, a pubic fracture and a pulmonary contusion. Her injuries required better care, so Danielle was transported to a hospital in Naples, Italy.

FrontierMEDEX covered the costs of Danielle's mother flying to Italy to be with her daughter in Naples. Once in Italy, her mother's American cell phone did not have service. Danielle, being in the hospital, did not have a charger for her dead cell phone battery, and so FrontierMEDEX acted as an intermediary to help Danielle and her mother communicate with her father, Bret, back in the U.S. They each had a local number to call in order to keep in touch regarding the best options for Danielle's treatment.

In conjunction with Danielle's school, FrontierMEDEX's Assistance Coordinators evacuated Danielle to a hospital in Rome, where the quality of care was at a higher level. It was in Rome that Danielle underwent surgery to stabilize her spine, at a hospital that had been researched and credentialed by FrontierMEDEX.

Eighteen days after the accident, FrontierMEDEX coordinated their return travel and Danielle was flying first class on her way back home to the U.S. with her mother serving as a non-medical escort. They arrived safely home to Pennsylvania and were reunited with Bret. Later, Danielle's father expressed all of their gratitude to CMI and FrontierMEDEX in a touching letter to those who helped his daughter, saying "I cannot imagine going through this ordeal without CMI/FrontierMEDEX."


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