During these pandemic times, we have once again been reminded of the importance of protecting one’s health and having health insurance. Disease comes without warning, and having medical insurance can protect you from the financial burden of costly treatments and high medical expenses. Firstly, we must look into the types of health insurance coverages and plans in India to understand how to choose a right health insurance plan:
Types of Health Insurance Plans
In general, there are two broad types of health insurance plans in India:
- Indemnity Plans
- Defined Benefit Plans
Indemnity Health Insurance Plans
Indemnity plans provide coverage for hospital expenses up to the insured amount, while defined-benefit plans provide a lump sum amount upon detection of illness.
There are 5 types of indemnity health insurance plans:
- Individual Mediclaim Plan,
- Family Floater Plan,
- Unit Linked Health Plan,
- Senior Citizen Insurance Plan and
- Group Mediclaim.
1. Individual Mediclaim Plan:
Individual medical insurance covers the hospitalization expenses of an individual up to the amount insured,
2. Family Floater Plan:
whereas family floater plans provide Mediclaim for the entire family, and the insured amount is divided equally among the family members.
3. Unit Linked Health Plan:
United linked health plans combine investment and insurance, and invest a part of the premium in the stock market.
4. Senior Citizen Insurance Plan:
Senior citizen coverage are health insurance plans designed for senior citizens, and have a higher premium due to the higher risk of hospitalization.
5. Group Mediclaim:
Lastly, group Mediclaim provides health insurance cover for large groups, and is provided by employers of an organization.
There are 3 main types of defined-benefit plans:
- Critical Illness Plan,
- Personal Accident Plan
- Hospitalization Cash Benefit Plan
1. Critical Illness Plan:
Critical illness health insurance plans provide coverage for specific critical illnesses such as cancer, paralysis and stroke, and pay out a lump sum amount when the illness is diagnosed. Some illnesses may be excluded from the general indemnity medical insurance plans, which can be covered by buying critical illness cover.
2. Personal Accident Plan:
Personal accident plan covers the policyholder for accidental injury/death, and pays out a lump sum amount in case of death or income loss caused by disability.
3. Hospitalization Cash Benefit Plan:
Lastly, hospitalization cash benefit plans are offered by some health insurance companies, wherein the insured person is paid an extra daily cash allowance apart from hospitalization expenses.
So, how does one choose the right health insurance plan? What are the factors that one must consider before buying Mediclaim insurance from a company?
Here is our checklist of 6 tips that will help you choose the best health insurance plan in India 2021:
1. Choose the right health insurance company
Having a health insurance plan from the best health insurance company can save you and your family from a lot of stress and hassle. An insurance company that has a high claim settlement ratio and a high-quality network of cashless hospitals can provide you much better service and healthcare in time of need. Additionally, one must look at the existing customers’ testimonials and ratings to see how the existing policyholders feel about the company and its services, which will help you decide if it is the right company to buy health insurance from.
How does one choose which company to buy health insurance from? We provide you an easy solution with our list of top health insurance companies in India, which will help you choose from the best health insurance companies for your medical insurance.
2. Check its cashless hospital network and reach in your locality
When buying health insurance, it is highly imperative that the insurance company has a large network of cashless hospitals which are present in your area. Trying out unknown hospitals in times of a health crisis can prove to be dangerous, hence an insurer’s hospital network must include high quality hospital brands that can provide you with the best healthcare services. One can check which hospitals are covered under the insurance company’s network on the company’s website.
3. Check its claim settlement ratio and duration
The claim settlement ratio shows the percentage of claims that the company has settled out of all the claims it received, and is a very important metric to assess the claim settlement efficiency of the insurance company. Companies such as Care Health Insurance aim to settle claims within 2 hours of filing, which shows its focus on providing efficient claim settlement service to its customers. Thus, one must look for companies that have a high claim settlement ratio and hassle-free claim processing.
4. Compare its premium, cover and no claim bonus
Although premium differs according to your profile in health insurance, it is still possible to compare premium and covers of different medical insurance plans. One can request direct quotes from the insurance company, or use Policybazaar to compare different health insurance plans. However, each health insurance plan differs in its coverage and services offered, which one must keep in mind when comparing premiums. Another key factor to compare is the no claim bonus offered by the insurance company, which can increase the insurance coverage by a maximum of 50 to 100%.
5. Look for extra services offered
Many health insurance plans offer extra services that make them more valuable, such as providing free health checkups, hospital room rent waivers and hospitalization cash benefits. One must pay attention to the extra services offered, as they can add a lot of convenience and help you save more money through your health insurance.
6. Check if you require add-ons
Last but not the least, one must consider whether one requires to purchase add-on covers in their health insurance plan. Critical illness cover can provide you with larger insurance coverage for terminal diseases, and provides you with a lump sum benefit on diagnosis. Top-op covers can help you increase the base cover of your existing health insurance plan, and personal accident cover provides you with additional coverage in case of an accident. These covers can increase your financial protection in case of hospitalization, although they will add an extra cost to the premium.
In summary, these are our tips to help you choose the right health insurance plan in India. It is very important to choose an insurance company that has a large network of high-quality cashless hospitals, a high claim settlement ratio, useful extra services, cheap affordable premium and a competitive no-claim bonus. We hope this article will help you choose the best health insurance in India.
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