Tips for While You are Abroad

Handling Emergencies

While it is never easy to handle an emergency situation, you should use your best judgment in the moment and to contact the relevant University office as soon as possible. If you are in doubt about whom to call, contact the University Police at 773-702-8181 and ask for the Dean-on-Call or, in the case of sexual assault, the Sexual Assault Dean-on-Call.

Criminal Activity

  • Contact local authorities in cases of imminent danger. Otherwise, contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate for advice on dealing with local authorities or reporting a crime.
  • Consult with University resources as soon as possible.
  • Assist the victim in seeking medical attention if it is wanted or warranted.
  • Obtain copies of all documents related to the crime.

Medical or Emergency Care

The quality of health care from overseas medical centers can be variable, particularly in developing countries. Some hospitals may have out-of-date facilities while others have highly sophisticated diagnostic and therapeutic equipment similar to that found in the U.S.

  • Many countries reuse syringes, even disposable ones. It is best to avoid injections unless absolutely necessary. If an injection is required, verify that the needles and syringes come directly from the package or are properly sterilized. If extensive treatment or surgery is deemed necessary, medical evacuation should be carefully considered and discussed with University officials.
  • Assistance in finding suitable medical providers is available from U.S. consular offices or the emergency medical evacuation insurer.
  • Frequently, payment for medical services is by cash or credit card. In some countries, health care is free or free to citizens of certain countries. It is rare that medical services abroad are billed to an insurance company.
  • U.S. consular office can assist with transferring funds from the United States or with small loans in extreme circumstances. The emergency medical evacuation insurer may also be able to help advance funds.
  • Anyone receiving medical care should obtain copies of all bills and receipts for their records and submission to their health insurer.
  • Trip participants should be aware that they are responsible for paying all medical expenses they incur while abroad, including evacuation expenses.

Civil Unrest

  • Consult with U.S. Embassy or Consular staff as soon as possible.
  • Consult with University resources as soon as possible.