How To Choose The Best Health Insurance Polic...
Thu, Apr 06, 2017
Most people are protected under the group health plan taken out by their employers for them. Then there are some that opt for individual health plans and others that avail family floater plans. There are also those who do not have any coverage whatsoever. Whether you are single or married (with or without children), having a health insurance cover is important as it helps protect you and your family against the financial hardships caused by accidents or any other medical emergencies.
The insurance market is flooded with choices. This can make it tricky for an individual to find a health plan that perfectly meets all of his or her insurance needs. To help make the selection process easier, here are few things you need to look out for when you compare policies:
When you compare different insurance policies, shortlist those that cover a wide range of illnesses, especially critical ones as they can be quite expensive to treat. You are most likely to find two kinds of coverage - disease-specific and comprehensive. Having an adequate comprehensive cover is important for both you and your family. If you feel that you are likely to be diagnosed with a particular illness then consider availing a disease-specific cover as supplemental insurance.
Make sure that when you avail an insurance plan, you take into consideration medical conditions that are common in the family - diabetes, cancer etc. Be completely honest with your health insurer as they can help you find the most suitable cover. Also, see to it that you thoroughly review the terms and conditions relating to exceptions - you may find that some policies do not cover pre-existing illnesses.
Look out for insurance companies that have high claim settlement ratio. When an insurer’s claim settlement ratio is high, you can be sure that the company honours genuine claims. If an insurance company has received 100 claims, from which it has settled 80 and rejected 20, it means the insurer has 80% claim settlement ratio.
Most insurance claims are hardly ever turned down. But knowledge of the claim settlement ratios can help you decide which health insurer to go for. When you compare policies and come across two that have almost the same features, knowing that one has a higher claim settlement ratio over the other can help you make your final choice.
Look into the premiums charged by different health insurers and select those that are pocket friendly. Your final decision however must not be based on premium comparison alone as very cheap premiums mean you may have to forgo some benefits. Usually, more the benefits, higher will be the premiums. Conduct a cost benefit analysis to see if the benefits you are getting from a policy are worth the cost.
Co-pay is among the most important factors to be considered when you select an insurance plan. If you find that a policy has a co-pay clause, it means that you, as the insured, will have to bear a certain percentage of the medical expense, while the rest will be taken care of by the insurer.
To better understand how co-payment works, consider this example - if your policy has a co-pay clause of 10% and your medical bills amount to Rs. 20,000, you have to bear Rs. 2,000 out of your pocket, while the insurer will pay for the remaining Rs. 18,000.
Ideally, you must opt for a plan that does not have a co-payment clause.
The best insurance plans are those that can be renewed for the maximum age period. Earlier, policies could only be renewed till the insured reached 65 or 70 years of age, but lately health insurers have begun offering customers lifetime renewability. Maximum renewal age must be one of the criteria when you compare the various insurance plans in the market. Few insurance providers have also started offering senior citizen policies that come with lifetime renewal, where the entry age is 60.
It is highly recommended that you choose a plan that comes with lifetime renewability.
For more information about the various health insurance products in the market visit QuickBima.