10 Things to Consider Before Buying Health Insurance

As there are a lot of firms selling health insurance policies in India, selecting one can really become a daunting task. Apart from a lot of plans to choose from, intimidating jargons which otherwise are called as policy wordings add to the confusion.

While buying health insurance is a tough choice, there are a few factors you should consider when zeroing down on a plan. Below are the 10 things to consider before purchasing health insurance:

Claim Process

The simpler the claims process and the faster the settlement of the claims, better it is for the insured. Therefore, these two are major factors when it comes to the selection of a policy. Good customer support is an additional advantage one should look for.

Waiting Period

Most insurers have a waiting period for pre-existing diseases. The period can range from two to five years and differs from one insurer to another. You need to keep that number in mind while buying a health plan. A good way is to buy a health insurance plan in your youth, there is a statistically less chance of you filing a claim and you can clear the waiting period with ease.

Family Health Insurance

When purchasing health insurance plans, make sure that you do so keeping your family members and their age in mind. Before buying the insurance, consider their present ailments if any as well as the family’s medical history. In addition, check with your family members for any pre-existing diseases before buying a policy.

Selecting the right insurance amount

At the time of selecting a health insurance plans, one should select the amount wisely as it covers the medical expenses for a year. Take your age into account; the younger you are, lower the sum insured you need. One should also take a look at his or her income levels to analyse the premium affordable. Another vital aspect are the add-ons for they impact premium amounts. Make sure you chose a sum insured which won’t fall short in case of an emergency and whose premium is not too exorbitant.

Network hospitals

One should always check cashless network of hospitals the with the insurance company. At the time of a medical emergency or hospitalization, the hospitals in the network offer cashless option—insurer settles the medical bills directly with the insurer. Go for insurers which have a high number of network hospitals such as HDFC ERGO that has over 5000 hospitals in its network.

Maternity benefits

With medical expenses on the rise, pregnancy costs have skyrocketed as well. It is vital for women to buy a health insurance plan that offers maternity benefits. For maternity benefits, one should look into the waiting period applicable for claiming maternity expenses and consider the sub-limit. The policy should also cover outpatient expenses and check for exclusions related to the policy.

Pre/post hospitalization

Before hospitalization, you visit the doctor, get medicines, and undergo tests. You are hospitalized and after treatment, some expenses occur—the expenses include follow up with the doctor, medicines to be taken and many others. Choose an insurance plan which covers these aspects too.

Cumulative bonus

Insurance companies offer a cumulative bonus when the insurer does not make a claim in the previous policy year. One can accumulate this bonus year after year. The bonus is an increase in the sum insured or discount on the premium payable, or a combination of both.

Lifetime Renewal

Look for health policies which offer life time renewability. There is a higher chance of suffering from diseases and illnesses when you are old compared to when you are young—a health policy which offers lifetime renewability is what you should buy.

Free Medical Check-up

You should look for a policy which insures the person for a free medical check-up. However, this does not affect the premium when policies undergo renewal.

A health plan is your best help during times of medical emergencies. Consider these 10 points before you buy one.

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