Health insurance is insurance against the risk of incurring medical expenses among individuals. By estimating the overall risk of health care and health system expenses, among a targeted group, an insurer can develop a routine finance structure, such as a monthly premium or payroll tax, to ensure that money is available to pay for the health care benefits specified in the insurance agreement.
Having elderly parents in the family signals that you need to review your insurance policies to evaluate if they are adequately covered. There are several factors that come into play here, to determine if your parents need more insurance or they are cushioned well against any unforeseen situations.
There are several relevant questions raised here: Do you have an employer’s insurance that covers them? Should you include your parents under a family-floater policy? Should you buy a separate insurance cover for them? We will delve deeper into all these aspects in this article.
Should you invest in a specialized plan designed for senior citizens?
India, is yet to wake up to the pressing need of introducing insurance policies to specially cater to people who are aged over 60. However, gradually insurance providers are making a foray into offering plans for senior citizens. Several major companies like Bajaj Allianz, National Insurance Company, New India Insurance Company, United India Insurance Company, etc.
have introduced policies which provideinsurance against hospitalization and other medical expenses for any ailments,sickness and accidents. Most of these plans come with a lifelong tenure or a tenure that extends to 80-90 years. These plans are slightly restrictive and not as flexible as a health insurance policy bought early, as they have sub limits and co-payments.
What should you do if your employer provides a cover for your parents?
It is advisable tonot solely depend on the mediclaim policies provided by your employer. The coverage provided by the employer is usually not sufficient to take care of the entire medical expenses when an emergency arises.Also, many employers are imposing restrictions on insurance for parents, making it unreliable.
Although many shirk away from buying insurance policies for elderly family members fearing higher premiums, it can cost you more in the long term. Thus, it is wiser that you evaluate the amount of mediclaim offered by your employer and buy a policy that would act as an additional cushion.
Are critical illnesses covered under the insurance policy?
One of the major checks that you must conduct before judging if your parents are well insured, is to check if their insurance policy covers critical illness. Critical illness cover provides protection against life threatening conditions like heart attacks, strokes, tumors, cancer, paralysis etc., all of which can lead to permanent disability and pose a major financial burden for the entire family.
You can invest in a separate cover for critical illnesses over and above the regular health insurance policy as these are restrictive in nature and only cover around 15-20 diseases.
Are pre-existing diseases covered?
Another important aspect of buying insurance for your parents is to check the policy’s take on covering pre-exisiting diseases. Usually most insurance providers does not cover existing diseases for up to four years, following which hospitalization expenses are paid for. Additionally, in the first four years, hospitalization for new ailments and accidents are covered.
To help you zero inon a good insurance cover for elderly parents, we give you few popular policies to choose from:
Pre-screening medical tests
Sub Limit for critical illness
Day care Coverage
Completion of 1 year
Not required if you have health insurance over the last three years