The COVID-19 pandemic has made us realize that the future is unpredictable and medical emergencies can take place anytime. Therefore, to protect ourselves from any medical emergency, health insurance is a must. This guide is an active attempt to understand health insurance during the pandemic.
We are all following social distancing norms and taking health precautions and measures, but we also need health insurance. Please remember, health insurance is what every family needs not only during the pandemic but for any medical emergency in the future as well.
In India, we are going through the second wave, which is more disturbing. So now there is increased awareness, especially about health insurance.
How Health Insurance Has Changed During Pandemic
Now, let us understand the importance of health insurance during COVID-19 and how it can be your savior.
1. Cashless Hospitalisation
If anyone suffers from COVID-19 or any other critical illness, then he/she can get the treatment immediately with cashless hospitalization. After going to the hospital, you won’t have to deposit any cash.
With the help of cashless health insurance, you will get treatment as soon as you get admitted.
2. Pre and Post Medical Expenses
Your health insurance will provide you free annual health check-ups without paying any charges. These charges include blood sugar tests, urine tests, cholesterol, ECG, etc.
The annual check-ups will always help guide you and alert you about any illness or sickness that may originate in the near future. This is also known as preventive health care.
Similarly, there are a lot of post-medical expenses involved like, follow-ups, diagnostics, physiotherapy, etc. The cost of these tends to end up quickly.
3. Income Tax Benefit
Along with preventive healthcare and hospitalization, the best part of health insurance is that it gives you tax exemption under Section 80D.
Health insurance covering the whole family, including your parents and spouse, can give you tax exemptions up to Rs. 60,000. However, it depends on the age of your parents and you.
Interestingly, group health insurance at Plum will help you reduce taxable income as well.
4. High ICU and Other Treatment Costs
Due to COVID-19, many individuals have gone through significant health issues such as low oxygen levels, which required ventilator support in the intensive care unit.
The current hospital charges for COVID patients in Tier-1 and Tier-2 cities are around INR 10,00,000. Therefore, health insurance is a must to claim such a large amount in a medical emergency.
5. Additional Benefits
Besides giving coverage against hospitalisation expenses for coronavirus, adequate health insurance also offers additional benefits like no-claim bonus, double sum insured, reduction in pre-existing disease, double sum insured, and much more.
Also, it covers several chronic and critical illnesses like hypertension, diabetes, kidney failure, stroke, etc. The extensive coverage of health insurance makes it a beneficial source of investment.
6. Rising Inflation
Medical advancement is one of the reasons for increasing medical inflation pre-COVID. But after the corona outbreak, the scarcity of medical supplies and high demand has further increased the medical inflation rate.
Hospitalisation, treatment costs, medicines touch the sky and even get out of reach for ordinary people. Thus, to combat such ill effects of inflation, a health insurance policy is a wise choice.
What Do You Need to Know Before Purchasing a COVID-19 Health Insurance Policy?
Here are a few things to know and understand before you go ahead and buy the Covid-19 insurance cover:
1. Choose a Policy That Offers Sufficient Coverage
Having insurance that provides a sufficient coverage amount is crucial while selecting a plan. COVID-19 treatments can be costly, and one must carefully evaluate their health insurance coverage based on family members, dependents, and financial status before making such a decision.
2. Check the Different Premium Options Available Online
Ideally, one should always prefer a health insurance plan with low premiums with sufficient coverage. A health plan must feel like a future securing investment.
Therefore, one should carefully evaluate their financial stature and select a plan with affordable premiums that will also provide good coverage and fit the needs of the individual and his/her family.
3. Cashless Hospitals
Many insurance companies have tie-ups with a list of hospitals (commonly known as Network Hospitals). Having a plan with such insurers helps one obtain the benefit of cashless treatment during medical emergencies.
Consequently, this is a crucial parameter before shortlisting health insurance plans. For new buyers, ensuring that a particular insurer has tie-ups with nearby hospitals equipped with COVID treatment facilities will make a significant difference during an emergency.
4. Waiting Period Clause
Most health insurance policies come with a waiting period before the policy is initiated. However, the waiting period might be different for various insurance providers and can also depend on the date of issue. Usually, health insurance policies come with a waiting period of 30 to 45 days.
5. Claim Settlement Process
The claim settlement process is an essential factor for health insurance or any other insurance plan. Claim settlement can be tricky or time-consuming at times, and it is the last thing one would desire to go through while dealing with a disease like COVID-19.
Make sure that the claim settlement process is easy. One must compare settlement, timeliness, process, and approval ratio among various companies before choosing a health insurance plan.
Post COVID-19, people have realized the value of comprehensive health insurance plans. With growing cases, they now tend to invest more in insurance policy than in their lifestyle.
If you are also looking for an adequate family or group health insurance policy, opt for Plum. We have hand-picked policies that not only offer coverage for coronavirus but also cover chronic and critical illnesses.
Plum offers the best health insurance plans that suit every pocket and provides broader coverage with several benefits. So buy now and bid farewell to your health concerns post-COVID-19. Say hello to Plum!