Health insurance coverage in India leaves a lot to be desired. Over 86% of people in rural areas and 82% of people in urban areas have no access to healthcare insurance of any sort. Of the remaining percentage that does have varying degrees of coverage, a majority are through employer-provided policies.
Considering the ever-increasing cost of healthcare in the country, the need of the hour is comprehensive insurance coverage. Every individual in India should have access to a suitable health insurance policy that complements their needs.
Here’s a brief guide on how to choose the best health insurance plan and protect yourself from the financial burden of funding healthcare.
- Determine the amount of coverage you require
The first thing that you need to decide is the amount of coverage that you require. It depends on several factors, such as the place you live, your age and health condition, and your family’s medical history, to name a few.
For example, healthcare in Tier-1 cities like Delhi and Mumbai is typically more expensive than in smaller towns. If you live in such cities, it’s highly advisable to go for the maximum coverage limit. Similarly, if you have a family history of serious ailments, you should choose your health insurance policy accordingly.
- Individual vs family floater policies
Another important choice that you have to make while going through possible health insurance plans is whether an individual plan will suit you more or a family floater plan. An individual policy offers comprehensive coverage which can be availed by a single person.
You may check out the Group Jeevan Suraksha Plan offered by Bajaj Finserv under their Pocket Insurance category. The policy allows you to insure your family members at a premium of just Rs. 399 while offering a coverage of Rs. 2 lakh.
- Check the waiting period for pre-existing conditions
Every health insurance plan in India comes with some terms and conditions regarding pre-existing diseases. In most cases, the minimum time after which pre-existing diseases are covered is 48 month. The best health insurance policies set the limit at 36 months. Regardless, you should choose the plan which has the least waiting period for pre-existing conditions.
- Check the maximum age limit for renewal
Policy renewal can turn out to be a bit of a challenge, especially for senior citizens as some plans have an upper age limit for renewal. As such, it is paramount that you choose a policy which can be renewed at an advanced age.
- Choose your insurer after thorough consideration
There are over 40 health insurance providers in India, which may confuse a potential policy seeker. It’s important that you choose the right one based on your requirements. It’s highly advisable to select an insurer who has a high claim clearance ratio. In other words, compare different insurance provider based on the number of claims they clear against the number of claims they receive.
Also, check whether your chosen insurer offers cashless facilities. Cashless treatment is fast catching up in India, especially in the bigger cities. In this type of coverage, your insurer directly clears your hospital bill, without you having to do any transactions in the middle. Arranging for cash during medical emergencies can be challenging, which this feature eliminates completely.
Equipped with this information, you are now ready to avail a health insurance policy that complements your healthcare requirements. Mounting hospital bills is a problem faced by countless Indians on a daily basis. A comprehensive coverage plan can go a long way in solving the issue and protect you and yours from unwarranted expenses on healthcare.