Life is full of complexities and one of those is medical emergencies. With the rising cost of healthcare, it’s almost necessary to purchase a health insurance policy.
But, with so many choices available, choosing an insurance policy that will work just fine for you can get complicated. Don’t worry, we have made this easier for you. Here’s a brief summary of the 10 items you might find choosing the right health insurance plan for yourself and your family:
1. The Age Criteria
Gender is one of the main determinants when it comes to health insurance. When buying a care policy, the age of the family members who require insurance must be kept in mind. As with a family floater scheme, the premium expense will depend on the age of the oldest member of the family.
Often, when buying a health insurance policy you will need to find out the age limit criteria. For example, there are insurance plans that have a minimum admission age limit of 91 days and a maximum admission age limit of up to 60 years. And there are plans for a minimum age limit of 25 years up to 50 years overall. There are plans, however, which have no entry-age restrictions. So, you are given the choice to choose accordingly.
2. The Right Combination of Premium and Coverage
Buying a health plan with the lowest premium can be lucrative. Yet this could have two sides of it. A program that has a lower premium will be nice because it gives you broad coverage at a price you will pay for. The other aspect is lesser premium at the cost of the insurance coverage.
The safest way, therefore, is to look for the factors behind a decreased premium. This is because it should not be at the insurance cover rate. Check if there is some hidden co-payment provision, deductibles, and sublimits, and if there is then you will likely end up paying more at the time of claim. (Learn all about Health Insurance Terminology.)
You will buy a policy that offers sufficient coverage, without sacrificing on the benefits and at a premium you can afford.
3. The Waiting Period Clause
When you think about the waiting time clause so you’d be in a better position to make a decision. In this time, the insurer does not consider any claim resulting from pre-existing diseases or specific illnesses. And depending on the provider and the package you have selected it will vary between 24 months and 48 months anywhere.
This waiting period is applicable to pre-existing conditions such as thyroid, blood pressure, diabetes, etc. that one might have until purchasing the program. It also refers to common conditions and disorders such as arthritis, varicose veins, cataracts, etc.
Therefore, in case of a health emergency, you can compare and select a package that comes with a limited waiting time to be able to claim the benefits.
4. Cashless Hospitalization Benefits
Health insurance providers are typically connected to network hospitals where covered patients can take advantage of cashless care in the event of a medical emergency. It will save you from the endless paperwork that is needed when admitting and claiming. In addition, the insurer shall pay the insured amount directly to the hospital.
And you don’t have to pay for funds and then apply for their return. It’ll be helpful if you review the list of empanelled hospitals with your insurer and know what all the hospitals on the network are in your city.
5. Pre and Post Hospitalization Coverage
Most health plans cover the medical expenses that are incurred during the hospitalization. Buy a package that covers expenses incurred before and after the hospitalization as well as saving expenses incurred on ambulance bills, medical tests, medications, doctor fees, etc.
6. Coverage of Maternity Expenses
Ignoring maternity coverage under a health insurance contract is a common error committed by many people. With delivery costs and maternity care already reaching the roof, it is best to purchase a health plan which also includes maternity expenses. Usually there is a 2 to 4 year waiting period before you can demand the benefits. For example, if you want to get married or want a family let’s say after three years then a plan with2-year waiting period would work for you.
Choose a package that also covers medical expenses for newborn babies, apart from the delivery costs. Should not forget to test the limitations attached to it, too.
This refers to the discount provided by the insurance provider for all the years you did not apply for. Essentially, the compensation amount is expanded for all claim-free years at the time of subsequent policy renewals.
Most health insurance offers the NCB cap however. And the rise in the insured amount will depend on the insurer’s stipulated limit.
8. Preventive Health Check-up Facility
And the cost of cardiovascular disease preventive health check-ups, cancer scans, MRIs, etc. has risen. If you can get it protected in your health insurance policy and pay the same for your insurer then why not? You can definitely save some money there. Before deciding on a health insurance policy, make sure that you always review the coverage limit for preventive health check-ups.
9. Co-Payment Clause
A lot of people find the word confusing and at the time of purchase prefer to ignore it. That is simply the proportion of the amount you’d like to pay at the time of claim and the insurer would cover the rest. So, before you sign your contract on prescriptions, check if there is any co-payment provision that could affect your claim amount. If possible purchase a plan that has no sublimits. However, if you have any pre-existing medical issues or have crossed a certain age limit most insurers would have a co-payment clause.
10. Claim Process
Check out the policy and go through the insurance claim process that the insurance provider implements. A smooth claim process at the time health cases are settled is a blessing. You may do some research, read online consumer feedback and pick a health insurance provider known for their streamlined claim settlement services.
Now that you know the things you need to bear in mind when buying health insurance, why wait?