Having the right insurance cover at the right time can make a huge difference during a medical emergency. But health insurance policies come with pre-set rules, some are made for seniors, others are custom-made for specific diseases, etc. That’s why, you cannot take a blind aim while choosing a health insurance policy. Thankfully, this article lists 8 things to consider before purchasing health insurance to help you zero in on the best policy for you and your family. Read on to make the right decision.
While there is no perfect formula, here are a few tips to help you make the best choice for you:
1. Claim Process
A seamless claim settlement process is a real blessing at the time of settling medical claims. Go through the website of the insurer, the agreement and the customer reviews as well to know about the efficiency of the insurance provider.
2. Insured Amount
Your health insurance premiums are breakups of the insured or coverage amount. The higher the insured amount, the more the premiums. With the inclusion of the add-on services, you might have to pay a little extra, but it will be worth it in case you face a medical emergency. Go through and understand the details of the total insured amount before signing the agreement.
3. Network Hospitals
Many insurance companies now provide the facility of cashless claim settlement. This option might seem attractive; however, you should know that this facility is only available at the network hospitals of the insurer. Check with your insurer to see if those hospitals are in close proximity to your location. You won’t have to travel long distances during times of emergency if your insurer provides a vast chain of network hospitals.
Ideally, you should purchase a health insurance policy which provides a renewal facility. Every insurance policy comes with a validity period, and policyholders are advised to renew their policies to continue availing their benefits even after their expiry. You can also review your coverage amount during renewal.
5. Free Check-Ups
Costs for medical check-ups have gone sky high and are getting more expensive with each passing day. A regular check-up is necessary, and it should be included in your health insurance plan. Check with your insurer if there is a preventive health check-up plan included in your policy.
6. Inclusions and Exclusions
It is advisable to read the inclusions and exclusions of your health insurance policy. Health policies can be illness-specific too. Not knowing all the details of your policy can lead to claim rejection and unexpected expenses.
7. Add-On Covers
Every health insurance provider has some add-on facilities to choose from. Check with your provider and see if the add-ons are suitable for you and whether they can be availed by your family members. For example, if you have a spouse, you might want to get a maternity add-on.
8. The Co-Payment Clause
For a sweet discount, an insurer may ask you to consider a policy with a 20% co-payment. This will look attractive today but every time you make a claim, you’ll be out of pocket.
Once you’ve considered all of the above and taken into account your own financial situation, pick a policy that gives you the best possible coverage. A few tips:
One should carefully read the terms and conditions of a health insurance policy before going ahead with the purchase. There are a few things that you should avoid while buying a health insurance policy. Some of them have been discussed below:
Investing a little more today can be vital tomorrow! Health insurance policies are absolutely necessary to tackle any unforeseen medical emergencies. However, one should be well informed about the dos and don’ts while purchasing a policy from the plethora of options available in the market.
Ans: There can be multiple illnesses and treatments excluded from a health insurance policy. It usually depends on the terms and conditions of the policy. The list may include dental treatments which do not require hospitalisation, intoxicant abuse, general debility, AIDS, self-inflicted injuries, infertility treatment, convalescence and many more.
Ans: There is no such maximum number specified on a health insurance policy. There might be a scenario where your insured sum amount gets exhausted after one or two claims. Most insurance providers offer a restoration option for such circumstances.
Ans: The waiting period of your health insurance policy depends on your insurer, and no charges are payable by the insurer during that period. However, most insurance providers exclude accidents from such clauses. Hospital expenses due to accidents during the waiting period are usually covered by the insurer.
Ans: The age criteria for adults range between 18 and 65 years, whereas, for children, this varies from 90 days to 18 years of age.
Ans: As per Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, policyholders can avail of a tax deduction of up to Rs. 1 lakh on health insurance premiums.
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Disclaimer: This article has been prepared on the basis of internal data, publicly available information and other sources believed to be reliable. The information contained in this article is for general purposes only and not a complete disclosure of every material fact. It should not be construed as investment advice to any party. The article does not warrant the completeness or accuracy of the information, and disclaims all liabilities, losses and damages arising out of the use of this information. Readers shall be fully liable/responsible for any decision taken on the basis of this article.
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