What are the different types of health insurance in India?
In the realm of healthcare, the medical treatment costs are increasing rapidly. As a result, awareness about the importance of health insurance is now higher than ever. By opting for health insurance with comprehensive coverage, you can ease the financial burden of medical expenses.
But before we delve in, let’s cover the basics of health insurance.
What is Health Insurance?
Health Insurance, often known as medical insurance, covers medical expenses that arise due to an illness, injury and/or accident. These medical costs include the cost of hospitalisation pre and post hospitalisation, medications, implants, specialist fees, the cost of surgery, etc.
Health Insurance Policies: An Overview
The different types of Health Insurance plans include:
Individual Health Insurance
Individual health insurance, also known as personal medical insurance, is a type of health policy that offers medical coverage to people on an individual sum insured basis. Being one of the most common types of health insurance plans in India, it covers the hospitalisation expenses incurred once you are admitted. You can add your spouse, children, and parents as beneficiaries under the same policy by paying an extra premium.
Family Floater Health Insurance
Family floater insurance covers the entire family, and the members of the plan share the insured sum. The best part of family health insurance is that you need not manage different policies, and it is cost-effective.
Senior Citizen Health Insurance
The senior citizen health insurance policy is ideal for older adults above 60. It caters to the medical-related treatment costs for senior citizens, such as preventive health check-ups, cashless hospitalisation, pre-existing disease coverage, and much more.
Critical Illness Plan
A critical illness cover offers financial protection to the insured by providing coverage against life-threatening health conditions such as kidney failure, cancer, heart attack, and multiple sclerosis. Critical illness insurance plans differ in the number of conditions covered based on the insurer and are irrespective of the pre and post-hospitalisation expenses.
A top-up health insurance plan is a backup to your primary health insurance plan. It is ideal for individuals looking to replenish the sum insured to a specific amount above the basic plan. You may have to pay a fixed deductible; the limit is crossed, and the top-up is activated.
Group Medical Insurance
A group medical insurance policy is a health plan for people such as bank-customers, employee-employer, society-members, etc. Group health insurance provides comprehensive benefits during an emergency, such as cashless facilities, ambulance costs, hospitalisation expense coverage, and more.
Personal Accident Cover
Over the years, road accidents have increased, and as a result, people end up losing their lives. The treatment expenses can be an additional burden; hence, personal accident insurance coverage is vital in providing financial aid to the affected or their family. It also covers education and orphan expenses if required. Personal accident coverage has the following benefits: assistance service, temporary total disablement, accident in-patient hospitalisation with personal accident plans, and worldwide emergency.
Maternity Health Insurance Plan
Maternity health insurance is a health policy that provides extensive coverage for all pregnancy-related medical expenses, including hospitalisation costs, delivery (normal and C-sec), pre and post-natal care, medical tests, and newborn baby expenses. Maternity insurance offers financial stability and helps women prepare themselves for raising their baby.
A disease-specific plan covers the insured under one specific disease/illness. Also known as a niche plan, this policy will either provide a pre-decided amount or the medical expenses during the treatment.
Mediclaim Insurance Plan
A mediclaim insurance plan covers treatment expenses for the policyholder when they are admitted in a hospital for atleast a day (24 hours). They are called in-patients, and mediclaim insurance covers all costs incurred due to accidents or illnesses.
Hospital Cash Insurance or hospicash is an insurance policy that offers a pre-decided sum insured for each day of hospitalisation, i.e., more than 24 hours. It is a fixed allowance paid to the insured to cover the miscellaneous costs during the period of hospitalisation.
Unit Linked Insurance Plan (ULIPs)
Unit Linked Insurance Plan or ULIP is a comprehensive insurance scheme that provides the advantageous combination of investment opportunities to meet your long-term objectives, along with a life coverage component to safeguard the financial well-being of your family in the event of an unprecedented situation.
Indemnity Health Insurance
Indemnity-based health insurance plans are medical insurance policies in which the policyholder is reimbursed for the hospitalisation expenses that arise during the treatment up to the maximum coverage amount specified in the policy.
Know the importance of Health Insurance
As we know, health risks and uncertainties are unavoidable aspects of life. No one plans to fall sick, but one can indeed plan for the unexpected medical costs. Buying Health Insurance is one approach to being financially prepared for unforeseen health risks.
A good Health Insurance covers medical expenses such as pre- and post-hospitalisation costs inclusive of doctor fees, medical tests, ambulance fees, coverage for specific diseases, treatment for accidents, expenses of maternity, organ transplantation charges and much more.
By paying a nominal Premium, the insured gets access to a substantial Sum Insured that can be used in case of medical emergencies.
What benefits do Health Insurance policies offer?
Health Insurance gains more importance when it offers comprehensive coverage and helps meet the individual’s and family’s requirement. Be aware of the benefits and features of the plans in your best interest.
Here are the benefits of purchasing a Health Insurance policy:
1. Offers financial stability
Medical emergencies might arise all of a sudden and result in acute financial difficulties. To pay for treatment, one might have to sell all their assets or possessions. In such circumstances, a medical insurance plan can provide financial protection and allow them to safeguard their long-term savings.
2. Protects your loved ones
Hence, it is essential to analyse your requirements carefully and invest in a health plan that gives you optimum benefits. For example, if you have ageing parents, they may be vulnerable to diseases and require adequate coverage in health insurance.
3. Gives access to the best medical treatment
People tend to compromise on medical treatments when they are financially challenged. With an effective Health Insurance Cover, they may choose the best doctor, hospital and treatment options.
When you get a Health Insurance policy, the following aspects are covered.
- Pre- and Post-hospitalisation costs
- Room rent charges
- Ambulance charges
- Consultation fees
- Coverage for day care procedures
- Coverage for modern treatments
- Coverage for maternity and delivery charges
- Vaccination charges of newborns
- Annual and preventive health check-ups and many more.
4. Protects savings
Medical expenses have skyrocketed in recent times. Unfortunately, many people end up spending their life savings in case of a medical emergency.
The importance of Health Insurance in preserving your savings can be extraordinary. You can hold on to your savings and use them for your future needs, such as buying a home, spending for your child’s academics and more.
5. It helps manage treatment expenses of lifestyle disorders
Lifestyle diseases are on the rise. Diabetes, obesity, respiratory problems and heart disease are nowadays common in youngsters and adults. Sedentary lifestyles, stress, pollution, bad eating habits, gadget addiction, etc., are the contributing factors.
As a result, it is more crucial than ever to protect your health with complete Health Insurance coverage. Deciding to invest in Health Insurance that covers diagnostic tests will help identify these illnesses early and make it easier to pay for medical bills, giving you one less thing to worry about.
Enrolling in Wellness programs offered by various insurers helps prevent or manage chronic diseases.
6. Tax benefits
Planning for the future should not strain your current income. Given the importance of Health Insurance, the Government of India provides tax deductions for obtaining a Health Insurance. To better understand the benefits, refer to Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961.
7. Helps when your existing insurance coverage is inadequate
Some of them offer only basic protection. Unfortunately, your existing insurance may be insufficient if more than one family member get hospitalised simultaneously. In that case, you can increase your Sum Insured by opting for Top-up plans, thereby getting additional coverage, and ensuring that the major part of your medical need is financially covered.
If you can’t afford a higher coverage plan right now, don’t panic. Start with a basic cover and build it up over time.
Why should you get a Health Insurance policy when you’re young?
Purchasing a Health Insurance policy when you’re young has several advantages.
- The Premium of Health Insurance is calculated based on your present age. You can pay a low Premium if you choose Health Insurance when you are younger.
- Most insurance policies often cover pre-existing conditions with certain waiting periods. While you are still young and healthy, the possibility of you developing illnesses might be comparatively lower, thus giving you the benefit of comprehensive coverage that will be beneficial if you fall sick later in life.
- Early enrollment in a Health Insurance plan guarantees extensive coverage and also helps you plan your finances in a better way. You can opt for a Health Insurance plan with lifetime renewability and avail holistic coverage. In addition, you can enjoy greater security during employment and even after retirement.
There are several kinds of Health Insurance policies in India. You can make a choice among them based on your needs. And it is always advisable to read the policy terms and conditions of your health plan to know the inclusions and exclusions.
Star Health Insurance offers a varied range of affordable Health Insurance plans that suit your budget and requirements, covering the medical cost of majority of health ailments and diseases.
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.