Rising healthcare costs have necessitated people to opt for health insurance plans. A majority of people later mull not having taken a comprehensive and high-value health insurance plan whenever a major medical problem strikes.
While most people employed in the corporate sector have access to medical insurance through group insurance covers, such plans often fall short of covering extensive medical bills running into lakhs.
Hence, people should invest in a healthcare insurance plan that can cover adequate medical insurance to take care of hefty medical expenses, especially in cases of an extended stay at a hospital to seek treatment.
Once you have made up your mind to buy a health insurance plan, the next thing that weighs on your mind is how to choose health insurance, which is best for you. Here’s our step-by-step guide to choosing the right health insurance.
Step #1: Choose Health Insurance of the Right Coverage Amount
Calculate the right amount of health insurance coverage that you and your family require. Always prefer plans that provide maximum health coverage and the amount for the treatment. It is essential to keep in mind that medical costs are continually rising along with inflation, so whatever plan you choose should be future-proof, or else any sudden medical problem would burn a hole in your pocket.
Step #2: Compare Different Types of Health Insurance Plans
Insurers nowadays offer tailored health insurance plans keeping in mind the evolving needs of the policyholders such as:
- Individual health insurance
- Family floater policy
- Maternity health insurance
- Personal accident insurance
- Group/employee health insurance
- Top-up health insurance
- Critical illness insurance
Make sure to read the fine print and go through the available features to determine the best option for you.
Step #3: Examine the Network of Healthcare Facilities
Medical insurance entitles you to cashless treatment from a vast network of hospitals that are associated with the insurer. For example, if you are availing health insurance from a particular insurance carrier, you can seek treatment from any hospital covered under their network. Every insurer provides a list of the hospitals covered under their network when you buy a new health insurance policy. Make sure that the network includes medical facilities near your present location.
Step #4: Consider Out-of-Pocket Expenses
It would help if you considered the out-of-pocket expenses that your health insurance does not cover. Compare the premiums various insurers are charging. Also, examine the deductibles and co-payment charges that the insurer might levy. Generally, health insurance plans with lower premiums come with higher out-of-pocket costs.
Step #5: Compare the Benefits
By now, you have probably narrowed down on the healthcare insurance policy that you want to buy. However, before you zero down on the best option, compare the benefits offered by each plan. While one health insurance plan provides cover against critical illnesses, another might be useful in providing emergency services. Also, consider your prevailing health situation, pre-existing conditions, renewal age, exclusions, coverage amount, waiting period, etc., to choose the best possible cover.
Choosing the Right Health Insurance Post-COVID-19
The COVID-19 health crisis has compelled people to relook into their existing health insurance covers. Many health insurance providers have come up with a COVID-19-specific indemnity plan called Corona Kavach. The indemnity plan, available for individuals and families to cover coronavirus-related hospitalization expenses, was launched on the diktat of insurance regulator IRDA. You have two options: buying a Corona Kavach policy or taking a top-up plan for your existing health insurance plan. However, the main disadvantage of Corona Kavach is that as per IRDA guidelines, the policy can be issued only till March 31, 2021 and is only for short-term coverage. Moreover, Corona Kavach covers only COVID-19-related medical expenses and not other ailments.