Should you opt for Individual Health Insurance apart from Employer Insurance?

Let’s face it – setting some time aside to figure out health insurance is not really on top of anyone’s to-do list. We tend to think of it as an unnecessary hassle and so, we are very eager to sign up to group insurance policies provided by our employers. More often than not, we end up signing on a few dotted lines without reading the terms and conditions of these group insurance policies.

The USP of health insurance for employees is that it is a simple and straightforward way to buy health insurance at attractive premiums and these plans usually cover spouses, children and dependent parents. You can’t argue with that right? So, people believe that medical insurance plans for employees provide adequate medical coverage. Let us take a look at some of the downsides of group insurance policies.

Insufficient coverage

Group insurance plans are drafted by insurance companies keeping in mind the most common ailments and their associated treatments. Sometimes they could also provide coverage against certain occupational hazards that are exclusive to a particular industry. However, this coverage does not include many serious ailments and diseases that employees and their families could be afflicted by. Critical illnesses and surgeries are usually not covered by such plans.

Incomplete coverage of hospitalization expenses

A 100% coverage of the hospitalization expenses incurred by the insured are not guaranteed by group insurance policies. Specific surgical requirements, focussed treatment methods and their associated costs cannot be predicted and covered by group insurance plans.

Limited coverage periods

Employees enjoy the benefits of group insurance plans only as long as they are part of their organization. In the event of switching over to a different organization, these plans are usually terminated, leaving the ex-employee exposed and vulnerable to medical expenses.

No scope for tax deductibles

The most common question about health insurance for company employees is, “Are health insurance premiums tax deductible for employers?” Unfortunately, the answer is no. Only individual health insurance plans are eligible for tax exemption as per Section 80D of the Income Tax Act.

Other issues

Other big grouses most people have with group insurance plans are as follows:

  • Most group health insurance plans do not cover general consultation
  • Little to no coverage for diagnostic expenses
  • No means to customize based on unique medical history of family

In the light of all the above pitfalls of group employer insurance, the smart thing to do would be to purchase an individual health insurance plan to supplement your employer’s insurance policy. This will ensure that you can customize your plan to best suit your medical history. HDFC ERGO offers some of the best individual health insurance plans that will guarantee complete coverage, so that you can stay protected from any possible health risk and enjoy complete peace of mind.

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