We usually go to work out of our homes most of the times even in different cities and countries and sometimes are never at home with our parents. Our conscience does not allow us to ignore the importance of buying a proper health insurance for those who held our hands when we could not walk.
Health insurance policies are our true saviours at times especially as age catches up. As years pass by the medical expenses are rising and hence it is imperative to buy the best policy to cover our expenses.
Now choosing the right health insurance for parents is a different ball game altogether. Unlike choosing our own health insurances, here are a few things that are to be kept in mind before doing so:
- The age criteria: Various insurance companies offer coverage up to a certain age. Some even offer lifetime renewability of the insurance. You could opt for a cashless health insurance that has an entry age of 60 years or more so that the renewability age would go up as well. These days we have better medical facilities and treatments; hence the average life spans have increased tremendously. This means having health coverage for a much higher time period. A policy that guarantees renewability at any age is a good investment even at a higher premium rate.
- Illness and diseases pre-existing coverage:
Pre-existing illness doesn’t mean only proven illnesses but also recurring symptoms that may not be diagnosed as yet. The illnesses could be blood pressure, diabetes, thyroid etc. The policy you choose should only be done after the full disclosure of all medical conditions. Special attention to be given to the diseases covered under the policy so that you do not encounter any problems in future.
- Hospital Network and Waiting period:
All new policies have a waiting period; the catch is to find out the ones with the least waiting period. During the waiting period, any treatment cost incurred due to pre existing illness will not be covered.
There is a network of hospitals that cater to the policy you have chosen. Check the names of hospitals, distance, cities, and check if they have any specialised treatments offered. The other factor to be checked is if they have cashless facilities available.
- Co-payment clauses:
Insurance providers will most of the time have a co – payment clause, especially in a senior citizen insurance policy. A co-payment clause states that the insured person will contribute a certain amount towards the treatment expenses before the insurance company starts making a payout. A high co-payment amount would mean that your parents or you would end up paying a lot before you can make the claim on the insurance. Hence it is absolutely important to check co-payment clauses well before you invest in the policy.
- Day to day expenses incurred coverage:
Make sure the policy covers treatment for those that do not require night stays at the hospital. This could include dialysis, chemotherapy, minor surgeries etc.
- Claim settlement ratio of the insurer should be high. A higher payout ratio means that when you are making a claim, the odds of you receiving the claim amount are also high.
- The sum insured that you look for should consider an amount of 8-10% towards inflation to increase in costs.
- Cheap premiums can cost heavily for you due to the exclusions or terms and conditions.
We all care for our parents and we want the best for them as they had wanted for us. The ones that held our hands when we could not walk need our hands to hold them now when they cannot.