Saturday, March 19, 2011

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why health insurance must be in india

  • Saturday, March 19, 2011
  • bhushan chhaya
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  • Health insurance, as the name suggests, is a generic term for insurance policies which provide financial coverage to an individual or a group against medical expenses due to an illness, injury or accident. These policies cover pre and post hospitalisation bills, inclusive of money spent on medical tests and purchase of medicines. The extent of cover provided by health insurance in India is determined by the insured, based on the affordability of the corresponding premium.
    Health Insurance in India is divided into 3 categories:
    • · Health Insurance policies which are offered by GICs and Non Life companies. These usually entail compensation to the extent of a pre determined sum (based on premium) from the total medical bill. However, this is a basic plan and has a huge list of exclusions. Health Insurance policies also have two variants; The Family Floater plan which covers the entire family under one premium. They have higher coverage and are financially easy on the pocket. The second is Group Mediclaim which is essentially an employer's option to cover employees and sometimes their families and dependants too.
    • · Hospitalisation Cash Policies are offered by Life and Non-Life companies. These ensure an assured cash benefit on a daily basis. However, these do not provide full insurance as the lump sum amount is not defined by the actual cost of medical treatment. These are recommended generally in combination with mediclaim plans.
    • · Critical life care Plans are offered by Life and GICs and cover an individual for specific grave illnesses like paralysis, cancer, among others.
    Public sector health insurance in India leaves a lot to be desired while the private health insurance in India has a lot of options to choose from. In the age of increasing health care costs and stressful lifestyles, medical contingencies can be financially devastating. Hence, it is not tough to see why insuring you and your family for healthcare should be a part of your regular financial planning. Moreover, health insurance in India offers various types of coverage and benefits such as:
    • · Hospitalisation charges including consultation, ICU, operative and diagnostic fees. Most policies also provide pre and post hospitalization cover with time periods ranging between 30 days prior and 60 days after admittance.
    • · Logistic costs such as ambulance charges, room and boarding are a part of most policies.
    • · Extended treatments such as Chemotherapy and Dialysis are also covered within the ambit of day care.
    • · Nowadays health insurance in India also provides the option of cashless hospitalisation wherein the company settles the bill directly provided you use hospital networks they have established tie ups with.
    • · Health insurance plans also make you eligible for tax benefits of various types based on premium paid, under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act.*

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