How to choose the best health insurance options available in India?

Health Insurance Plans Starts at Rs.44/day*

Overview 

Seeking the best health insurance could be challenging, considering the various available health plans, as each offers unique coverage. To choose the best health insurance policy, you must understand coverage, medical expenses and whether it meets your other required benefits. Knowing how to pick the best health insurance from the various available options is essential. 

Health insurance  

Health insurance plans are designed to safeguard your finances from being depleted in the event of severe health conditions that require hospitalisation during the policy period. However, many individuals mistakenly believe that health insurance plans only cover hospitalisation expenses, which is only partially accurate.

The primary objective of health insurance plans is to provide comprehensive coverage to policyholders, which they achieve by offering protection for a wide range of healthcare expenses. These expenses may include in-patient hospitalisation costs, pre-hospitalisation and post-hospitalisation expenses, daycare expenses, domiciliary treatment expenses, organ donor expenses, and more. 

Why buy the best health insurance available in India?

Health insurance can alleviate the financial and emotional strain of medical expenses. With the rising costs of medical services, even a minor illness or injury can cause significant financial stress. Health insurance can help by covering a range of medical expenses, including hospitalisation, medication, surgery, and consultations. 

In addition to providing financial assistance, health insurance offers peace of mind in a medical emergency. Many health insurance plans provide cashless hospitalisation, eliminating the need for upfront payments at network hospitals. The hospital will inform the insurance company, which will settle the bill. Some health insurance policies may also provide tax exemptions, reducing tax liability. Overall, health insurance is a valuable tool for managing the financial and emotional impact of medical expenses. 

Benefits of opting for the best health insurance options available  

If you believe that health insurance only covers medical expenses when you are hospitalised, you are mistaken. In addition to offering financial support during hospitalisation, it provides various other benefits, such as:

Cashless Treatment 

With a comprehensive health insurance policy, individuals can benefit from cashless treatment at a network hospital. This is advantageous as it eliminates the need to make out-of-pocket payments. The insured individual must complete the necessary paperwork with the hospital authorities and can then avail the facility, with the health insurance company taking care of the bill. 

Tax benefits 

Under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, individuals can get tax benefits by claiming deductions on the premiums paid for health insurance. As per this section, a person can claim a deduction of up to Rs. 25,000 on health insurance premiums. However, if an individual pays the insurance premiums for their elderly parents, they can claim a higher deduction of up to Rs. 30,000. 

These tax benefits incentivise individuals to secure health insurance coverage for themselves and their loved ones. 

Covering life-threatening illness 

Lifestyle ailments can be both fatal and financially burdensome. Individuals with moderate incomes may struggle to afford medical care for such conditions. However, by possessing a health insurance policy that includes coverage for critical illnesses, individuals can receive a lump sum to help cover the medical expenses incurred during treatment after diagnosis. This coverage can be added to one’s existing health plan by paying an extra premium.

Avail allied benefits  

Several health insurance providers in India have introduced preventive check-ups and advanced diagnostics that are typically not covered in a standard health insurance policy. It offers various advantages, such as  

  • Complimentary medical check-ups 
  • Access to nutritionists for expert advice 
  • Free consultations with healthcare professionals 
  • Collaborations with healthcare service providers 

Daily allowance  

Certain health insurance providers provide a daily allowance for each day of hospitalisation, which is separate from the total sum assured. This allowance can be utilised for medical expenses or other health-related necessities, subject to a daily limit. 

How to choose the best health insurance options available in India?

Finding a single health insurance policy that caters to all your needs is impossible. There are several policies available, each with its own set of unique benefits. Therefore, it is essential to carefully evaluate the coverage benefits of each policy and determine what is included and excluded before selecting the best one for you.  

Checking waiting period for pre-existing diseases 

Each health insurance plan has specific terms and conditions for pre-existing conditions. This implies that if an individual has any illness before obtaining a plan, the claim made for treatment of that particular illness will only be accepted after the insured has completed a specified waiting period. 

Typically, the waiting period can vary between 6 months to 4 years, although specific superior plans, such as the mediclaim policy, offer a shorter waiting period. When selecting a health policy, choosing one with a shorter waiting period is advisable. 

Check customer reviews 

When purchasing medical insurance online, it is imperative to consider customer reviews of various health insurance companies. These reviews provide a balanced mix of positive and negative opinions, highlighting the relevant pros and cons. This valuable information will enable you to make a well-informed decision. 

Compare premiums  

It is essential to conduct a thorough comparison of both the plans and the premium. Numerous online aggregators exist that assist in comparing insurance policies based on their benefits, features, premiums, maximum returns, and more. Selecting a plan without carefully considering all available options in the market is akin to inviting future regret. By comparing plans, you can secure all the benefits at a relatively lower premium rate. 

Read exclusions 

Policyholders must pay more attention to exclusions in a health insurance policy, leading to unexpected situations. While a plan may cover certain illnesses, it is essential to note that there are limitations and exclusions. For example, some strategies may exclude coverage for conditions like hernia, cataract, sinusitis, Gastrointestinal issues, and joint replacement during the initial period. Additionally, expenses related to dental treatment, HIV/AIDS, eye-related healthcare, STDs, and cosmetic surgery may also be excluded. Selecting a health plan with fewer exclusions is advisable to ensure comprehensive coverage. 

Summary  

Make a well-informed decision before buying the best health insurance options available. Selecting the most suitable health insurance policy is challenging as purchasing the best health insurance plan demands significant effort. 

FAQs

How do I choose the best health insurance plan? 

When choosing the most suitable health insurance plan, it is essential to consider your requirements and financial constraints. Begin by assessing the specific type of coverage you require, including doctor’s visits, medication, and hospital stays. While choosing, compare various factors such as premiums, deductibles, coverage extent, network hospitals, and customer reviews. Ultimately, opt for a plan that aligns with your healthcare needs.

What are the minimum and maximum age requirements for a health insurance plan? 

The eligibility criteria to buy a health insurance plan varies across India for each insurer. Mostly, they range from 18 to 65 years old. However, the criteria change depending on the type of health insurance policy you plan on buying. 


DISCLAIMER: THIS BLOG/WEBSITE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE

The Information including but not limited to text, graphics, images and other material contained on this blog are intended for education and awareness only. No material on this blog is intended to be a substitute for professional medical help including diagnosis or treatment. It is always advisable to consult medical professional before relying on the content. Neither the Author nor Star Health and Allied Insurance Co. Ltd accepts any responsibility for any potential risk to any visitor/reader.

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