The Indian healthcare industry is witnessing a sudden and substantial surge in the cost of healthcare throughout the last decade. It has grown by almost 22% in the last ten years and is expected to grow a further 11% to 13% by the end of 2022.
Data from the last National Sample Survey Office (2013 – 2014) shows that almost 36 million households across the nation experienced some form of medical emergency that exceeded their annual consumption budget.
Such high costs combined with the exceptionally low ratio of insurance policyholders across India (less than 25% in the rural areas) causes many individuals to witness substantial financial drawbacks when they face a medical emergency.
Thankfully, a health insurance policy can act as a perfect financial tool to protect you from such overbearing medical expenses. These policies offer substantial financial backing for the insured, freeing them from any financial burden that might impose on them at the time of an emergency.
There are several insurance providers that offer health insurance in India. It allows a prospective customer with a range of options to select the ideal policy that suits all their requirements. You should also check a few things about the scheme and the insurer before zeroing-in on a particular insurance plan.
Let’s take a look at a few things everyone should remember before availing health insurance in India.
- Your requirements – An insurance policy should be selected by the extent of your required coverage. The number of your family members, as well as their age, plays a crucial role in determining which scheme will be ideal for your need. For example, a young family can opt for a basic cover, while a family with senior citizens should go for a larger, floating cover.
You should also check whether an insurer offers all the extensions required for your family or not. It is one of the most important things you should check before buying an insurance policy.
- Network hospitals – You should also check the network of hospitals an insurance company has tie-ups with. Usually, these are the healthcare clinics where you will be offered cashless options and where the medical bills are settled directly with the insurer. It is better to buy health insurance from an organisation that has a broader network of associated hospitals.
- Limitations and exclusions – Many insurance policies usually come with a set of limitations and exclusions over their coverage. You should carefully go through all the details of the scheme before purchasing to ensure that policy offers financial coverage against all possible scenarios.
Also, it is better to go for a financial institution that offers minimum limitation and exclusions in their policies. Companies like Bajaj Finserv offer an array of insurance schemes that are some of the best Health Insurance policies available in India.
They also offer pre and post-hospitalisation cover on several policies. It protects from the financial burden of doctor’s consultation, cost of medicines, and follow up tests as well.
- Premium and sum insured – Premiums and sum insured are two important aspects you should consider before buying an insurance policy. The sum insured should be decided based on your future medical requirements, while the premium should not exert any financial strain on your budget.
You should also check whether the insurer offers facilities like online health insurance policy application, renewal, and premium payments. It will simplify the process and help you save time.
- Waiting period and claim settlement ratio – Most insurers apply a waiting period on their insurance policies. It can range from 1 year to 5 years, between which they do not offer financial assistance for pre-existing conditions. If you have elderly family members, it is better to select an insurer that offers smaller waiting period.
You should also check their claim settlement ratio. A higher claim settlement ratio increases your chances of hassle-free financial aid at times of need.
Keeping the above mentioned aspects in mind will help you find the ideal health insurance policy and avail the best healthcare at times of need.