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5 Important Things You Must Take into Account While Buying a Health Insurance Plan

5 Important Things You Must Take into Account While Buying a Health Insurance Plan
Insurance & NPS | April 19, 2017

A health insurance has become an inevitable thing in today’s era of skyrocketing medical expenses. If you do not have one for you and your family, you are guaranteed to end up shedding a huge amount of money on medical bills. But choosing the right health insurance plan keeping yours and your family’s requirement in mind is not a cake piece, rather a serious decision and tricky as well, especially, when so many companies promise you to offer the best and most curated health insurance plan. Our suggestion would be, pay a deaf ear to those self-proclaimed advertisements and continue to do your own research work for determining the best plan for you.

However, what surprises us is, despite so much awareness for having a health insurance plan, only 14.1 percent of the rural population and 18.1 percent of the urban population have their lives covered under a health insurance scheme.

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Now coming to the point, since heath insurance is something that each one should have, we give you a few important tips that you must consider for buying an insurance plan.

Age and ailment: If you are planning to buy a health insurance for you as well as your family members, then the age into account, followed by chronic diseases if suffered any. Make sure you review the medical history of each of your family members as well as yours and ensure if anyone of you is suffering from diseases like cancer and heart diseases which are usually not covered by health insurance plans. And in case you are married and planning to start a family, then estimate the cost of maternity and ensure it is covered by your chosen insurance plan.

Cover and sum assured: Besides choosing a right plan of health insurance, it is essential to make a right choice of amount of health insurance cover or sum insured. Sum insured is the maximum amount of cover for medical expenses in one policy year, which further determines the premium you need to pay. Make sure the insured sum you decide should be sufficient to bear your medical cost. For this, you need to consider a few essential factors like your lifestyle, medical conditions of your family and geographical area where you live. Another easy thumb rule is, calculate the ratio between the cost of bed per night and the sum insured. Ideally, the cost of a bed should be 1 percent of your sum insured. So find out a bed charge in the nearest hospital of your choice and estimate how much sum insured is required.

Empanelled hospitals: Go through the list of empanelled hospitals in your mediclaim policy in order to determine that the hospitals listed in the policy are comfortable in terms of quality and convenience and also match your style. Insurance companies have tie-ups with empanelled hospitals for facilitating you with cashless claim settlement. Do your own due diligence on those hospitals, in regards to their reputation, specialties, doctors on the payroll, equipment and so on. Also, ensure that those hospitals offer cashless admission facility for emergency hospitalisation.

Individual mediclaim v/s family floater plan: Now it’s time to decide between individual mediclaim and family floater plan, depending on your family structure and situation. An individual mediclaim covers only the insured, while a family floater covers the entire family of the insured. If you are looking for an insurance plan only for yourself, then individual mediclaim would be the best choice for you but if you are looking for a plan that will cover your entire family, then go for a family floater. Remember, per person premium in a family floater plan will be much lesser than that of an individual mediclaim for each of your family members. But again, if any of your family members has a critical disease which requires him to get hospitalised often, then he might consume a maximum portion of the sum insured. So, evaluate the overall situation of your family and then decide which insurance plan you should go for.

Compare various policies: It might happen that you do not know much about meclaim policies. So, instead of buying the very first insurance plan that comes to your way, do a comparative study between two, three or more policies. Read through the fine prints of the policies and take a note of all the terms and conditions in order to determine the right plan for you. For instance, a few health insurance plans have long waiting periods, while some don`t. So, read in between the lines and choose a plan that you think suits you the best.

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Debanjali SenguptaContent

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