As the COVID-19 pandemic spread across several parts of the world, many individuals realised how important it is to prepare for medical adversities. Apart from the physical toll you undergo with a medical emergency, your financial stability is also affected.
While you may work hard and build wealth gradually for your life goals, a medical emergency may come unannounced in your life, and you may have to break into your life savings to deal with these bills. This is because the costs of medical bills have been going up steadily over the past few years. If you wish to stay protected from the rising costs of medical bills and unprecedented medical emergencies, you must opt for a health insurance plan.
Health insurance policies are products designed to help you get the financial support you need during emergencies. As a result, you won’t have to stress over the medical bills stacking up, and you can focus on recuperating. Under the health insurance plan, you get coverage for pre and post-hospitalization expenses, diagnostic tests, medicines, etc.
With health insurance plans, you get to improve the plan’s coverage by including add-ons in the plan. Add-ons are additions that you can include to enhance the plan’s coverage. There are several add-ons available for you. This way, you can customise the plan as per your suitability. While you must learn about the different add-ons you can include in your health policy, you must check a few things before purchasing health insurance.
Things to Check Before Buying Health Insurance
Here are certain health insurance tips you should consider before purchasing health insurance:
- Coverage type: Health insurance is a broad term. You must understand the difference between critical illness insurance and the Mediclaim policy. Certain Mediclaim policies need co-payment. This means the insurer will not bear 100% of the medical bill. In these situations, you will have to pay a certain amount at the time of your medical claim.
Along with this, you may have certain limits on the room rent, medicine charges, pre-hospitalization expenses, etc. For the issues listed under critical illness, the insurer will provide you with a lump sum amount in critical health plans. You will get the freedom to spend the amount as you see fit.
- Premium amount: The premium amount you pay to remain covered in your insurance policy. You must consider the premium amount you will be paying for the health insurance plan. The coverage you select for the health insurance plan will directly impact the premium amount you will pay.
While you can look for ways to lower your premium amount, you must never lower the coverage you need to lower the premium amount. This is because the coverage you get through the medical insurance plan should not be inadequate during emergencies. Certain insurers like Tata AIG offer premium calculators on their websites. You can use the premium calculator to estimate the premium amount and plan your finances.
- Sum assured amount: The sum assured amount is the highest amount you can get through your medical insurance plan. The amount offered will help you deal with the medical bills you face. Some of the charges covered under the sum assured amount include ambulance charges, medicines, surgeries, hospital room bills, etc. If your sum assured amount seems inadequate for you, you can opt for the top-up feature to increase your sum assured amount.
- Claim process: Once your medical emergency is over, your next step would be to pay off the medical bills. To get the financial coverage from your health insurance plan, you will have to file a claim with your insurer. You have to follow certain steps and provide specified documents to your insurer to file the claim. Your insurer must have a simple claim process to help you settle the medical bills. Many insurers allow customers to initiate a claim online.
- Always disclose pre-existing diseases: Your health insurance plan is designed to protect you against unforeseen medical issues. Therefore, insurers generally do not provide coverage for certain pre-existing diseases. Any medical condition which the insurer is already dealing with is considered pre-existing ailments, and they will only be covered after a waiting period.
The waiting period differs for different insurers. You must also check the waiting period for pre-existing diseases in your health insurance plan. However, this coverage will be offered if you have provided medical information about the issue. If you had kept the information about the ailment to yourself, your insurer has the right to reject the health insurance claim.
Purchasing health insurance is one of the best ways to ensure you get the financial coverage you need during medical emergencies. Therefore, you must consider certain tips to buy health insurance in India before purchasing the plan. For instance, you must ensure you learn about the type of coverage you need, the claim process offered by your preferred insurer, and the sum assured amount that you are liable to get through the plan, etc. When selecting a health insurance plan, keeping these factors in mind will help you get suitable insurance coverage for such emergencies.