Aussie family in a Thailand hospital shares travel insurance warning

Australian mother Kylee Enwright is currently surrounded by her devastated family in a Thailand hospital after a tragic misstep at a holiday resort left her in a coma and fighting for her life.

What happened to her was a wake-up call for holidaymakers who thought they’re covered by travel insurance and it has raised the question about how drunk is too drunk when it comes to making a claim.

The mum-of-three left the hotel bar at the Thai resort they were staying at to go to the bathroom when she had a fall.

Australian mother Kylee Enwright is currently surrounded by her devastated family in a Thailand hospital.
Australian mother Kylee Enwright is currently surrounded by her devastated family in a Thailand hospital. (A Current Affair)

READ MORE: Single mum tormented by strangers at door after details posted online

“I saw my wife lying on the floor, unconscious, with blood around her head and coming from her ears, and her head was moving or shaking a bit,” her husband Paul told A Current Affair.

Mrs Enwright was rushed to hospital and the medical bill had already reached $50,000.

“The quote to get her home on a medivac is $200,000, which we just don’t have,” Mr Enwright said.

Australian mother Kylee Enwright left the hotel bar at the Thai resort she was staying at to go to the bathroom when she had a fall.
Australian mother Kylee Enwright left the hotel bar at the Thai resort she was staying at to go to the bathroom when she had a fall. (A Current Affair)
Australian mother Kylee Enwright is in a coma and fighting for her life.
Australian mother Kylee Enwright is in a coma and fighting for her life. (A Current Affair)

READ MORE: Couple left financially crippled after car was rammed during carjacking

“We are not rich people, just hardworking Aussie people who run a business and are just trying to survive day by day. We just need help.”

The Enwrights’ travel insurance company has rejected their claim because it believes Mrs Enwright could have avoided the fall if she had not been so drunk.

“I’m not going to deny we had drinks,” Mr Enwright said.

Australian mother Kylee Enwright pictured with family.
Australian mother Kylee Enwright pictured with family. (A Current Affair)

READ MORE: Pensioner creates ‘board of shame’ for vandals who keep kicking down his fence

“But we weren’t out driving the car, out on scooters, we weren’t out playing in traffic.

“We were sitting in a pool bar on our holiday, enjoying ourselves like anyone else would.”

Cover-More’s policy states it has the right to reject claims if the insured person has a blood alcohol reading of 0.19 or above.

Australian parents, Kylee and Paul Enwright, at the bar.
Australian parents, Kylee and Paul Enwright, at the bar. (A Current Affair)

But Thai doctors never took Mrs Enwright’s reading so Cover-More asked the couple for their bar bill.

At first glance, it appeared Mrs Enwright had nine long island ice teas while Mr Enwright appeared to knock back 14 beers.

The problem was the couple’s bar tab was still open when the Enwrights were rushing to the hospital.

Australian parents, Kylee and Paul Enwright.
Australian parents, Kylee and Paul Enwright. (A Current Affair)

Mr Enwright said the drinks could have been added to his bill and there’s no way they could drink that much anyway.

“I don’t think she had drunk an excessive amount,” he said.

Cover-More calculated the number of drinks with an estimated estimate of Mrs Enwright’s weight to work out that her blood alcohol level reading was 0.347, which would have her in the territory of allegedly being “unconscious”.

Paul Enwright gave A Current Affair vision of his wife losing her balance in the wet earlier in the day.
Paul Enwright gave A Current Affair vision of his wife losing her balance in the wet earlier in the day. (A Current Affair)
Australian father Paul Enwright is in Thailand with his wife who is in hospital.
Australian father Paul Enwright is in Thailand with his wife who is in hospital. (A Current Affair)

Mr Enwright doesn’t deny that his wife was tipsy and gave A Current Affair vision of his wife losing her balance in the wet earlier in the day.

Mr Enwright retraced his wife’s fateful 50-meter journey from the hotel bar to the toilet, highlighting how slippery the footpath was along the way and pointing out the lack of railing.

Choice travel insurance expert Jodi Bird says the Enwrights have every right to push back on Cover-More.

Choice travel insurance expert Jodi Bird.
Choice travel insurance expert Jodi Bird. (A Current Affair)

“If necessary, go to the ombudsman there because Cover-More has done a lot of work here but they are relying on some circumstantial evidence which may or may not stand up,” Bird said.

For now the family is relying on the good will of strangers who are contributing to an online fundraiser set up to help bring Mrs Enwright home.

“We can’t thank Australians enough,” Mr Enwright said.

Statement by a Cover-More spokesperson:

Cover-More is fair and reasonable in our claims processes, and we make our decisions after thoroughly assessing all available details and medical information.

This is a very sad case, and we will continue to offer Paul and Kylee and their families all the non-financial assistance Cover-More can. This includes help with arranging repatriation to Australia, assisting with hospital admissions and a ground ambulance in Australia, travel arrangements and making appointments with local medical practitioners overseas or in Australia.

Being under the influence of alcohol is a standard exclusion across all travel insurance policies.

Travel insurance is a contract between a travel insurance provider and the traveler. The contract includes a general exclusion for claims involving, arising from or relating to a person’s impairment due to them drinking too much alcohol:

a) which is proven by the results of a blood test which shows that your blood alcohol concentration level is 0.19% or above. (The level of alcohol in your blood is called blood alcohol concentration (BAC). As a point of reference, a BAC of 0.19% is almost four times the legal driving BAC limit range in Australia which is currently 0.05%);

OR

b) taking into account the following, where available:

(i) the report of a medical practitioner or forensic expert;

(ii) the witness report of a third party;

(iii) a person’s own admission; or

(iv) the description of events described to us by the policyholder or the treating medical professional (eg paramedic, nurse, doctor) as documented in their records.

With all of our claims and before any decision is made, where alcohol may be a factor, extensive inquiries are undertaken which may involve obtaining an independent report from a specialist toxicologist as to the potential amount of alcohol consumed and the impact this could have in contributing to the incident.

We gave Kylee’s husband, Paul, a detailed and transparent explanation for declining this claim.

Cover-More will not and cannot comment on the individual or specific details of the case due to our privacy commitment.