The two main operating companies of the Millea Group, Tokio Marine & Fire and Nichido Fire & Marine, announced that they would offer coverage to persons traveling outside of Japan against the risk of severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS.
The disease, which appears to be a type of viral infection, is thought to have originated in China, and has severely affected business and tourist travel throughout Asia, especially it Hong Kong and Southern China. To date more than 2,400 people have reportedly contracted the disease and an estimated 90 persons have died from it. There may in fact be many more, as the statistics from China are doubtful.
The Japanese insurers will cover claims from travelers infected by SARS over an extended period. The disease is thought to have an incubation period of as long as 10 days, and the policies will require that travelers returning from trips abroad have a medical check-up with 30 days of their return in order to validate coverage.
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