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Medical issues can increase with time & age, and we often see our parents struggling with age-related complications. The right treatment at an early stage can help reduce the pain and effects of such an illness. However, rising medical costs can cause a delay in treatment and lead to a medical emergency. To avoid this, one must create a solid financial safety net with health insurance plans designed for parents. Such plans are slightly different from regular health insurance policies.
Let us dive deeper into Health Insurance for Parents and understand how you can choose the best policy for them.
Health insurance plans, that cater to the needs of ageing parents can be termed Health Insurance for Parents. Specifically, these health policies are created for the needs of people above the age of 45 or 50 years.
You can choose from three different options when you are buying a mediclaim policy for your parents. Take a look at the list of health plans available for parents in India.
This mediclaim policy is specially designed for ageing people and takes care of their healthcare expenses in a comprehensive manner. A Senior Citizen plan offers additional benefits and coverages that can be avoided in a basic health insurance policy. For example, less waiting period and lifetime renewability.
As the name suggests, a Family Floater health plan is a group coverage that insures family members. For example, immediate family members like spouse, children, parents, and/or in-laws.
An Individual Plan can cover each parent with mediclaim policy. This plan is ideal if your parents’ age is relatively lower. For example, this plan is beneficial for parents below the age of 60 years.
Also, read: Types of Health Plans
Buying insurance in the traditional manner can be a time-consuming process. You must meet an insurance agent or visit the insurance company, check out various plans to choose the right one, and submit documents. All this can take several days. Instead buy health plans online to get various benefits. Here is why buying health insurance online is beneficial.
It is highly unlikely that you compare health insurance plans manually. Instead, you would request your insurance agent to choose health insurance coverage for your parents. This is not the right way to buy insurance as an agent has a vested interest in the most expensive cover you buy. This can lead to buying an unrequired plan. Online health insurance makes it easy to compare health plans. You can compare the features, coverages, exclusions, and the cost of your parents’ health insurance plan. There is more transparency of information when you buy a health insurance plan online.
Traditional insurance involves higher operational costs and agent commissions. These are eliminated from online insurance. Here, you buy the plan directly from the insurer’s website (for example www.acko.com) or mobile app. Thus, you can buy a health insurance plan at a comparatively lower cost. Online health insurance is also easy to understand. This leads to a quicker purchase while ensuring transparency.
Buying health insurance from an agent may require the submission of a long list of documents. You need to submit multiple copies of documents like age proof, ID proof, medical reports, etc. You can submit the soft copies or details while purchasing your health insurance policy online. This information is stored in the insurer’s database and can be retrieved at the time of renewals/claim settlement.
Health insurance or mediclaim policy plans for parents are usually available from age 60 to 80 years. Whereas the entry age for a Senior Citizen plan is 65 years. Such plans generally have life-long renewability. However, one should check the terms & conditions before buying the policy.
Medical history (if requested)
Reports related to pre-existing conditions
Inclusions or coverages are conditions when you must raise a claim. A claim will help you get financial aid for paying medical bills and other health-related expenses. Here is a list of general inclusions.
Room Rent: This refers to the charges incurred on staying in a particular hospital room.
ICU Charges: ICU or Intensive Care Unit is used to treat critically ill patients. These rooms are equipped with special life-saving machinery.
Doctor Visits: A doctor visits patients to keep a tab on their health. The number of visits is billed per hospitalization. Doctors can be categorized as general physician, anaesthetist, specialist, paediatrician, nutritionist, etc.
Operation Theater Charges: These are applicable in the case of scheduled surgeries.
AYUSH Treatment: Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy form a part of AYUSH treatments. Some insurance companies may offer this coverage as a part of the basic plan.
Daycare Procedures: These are small medical procedures that do not require prolonged hospitalization. For example, cataract surgery, removal of tonsillitis, etc.
Ancillary Benefits: Your insurance company may cover ancillary charges under Health Insurance for Parents. These refer to expenses against ambulance rides, medicines, walking aid, diagnostic tests, etc.
Pre- and Post-Hospitalisation: Pre-hospitalization treatment may be necessary when preparing a person for surgery. And post-hospitalization is treatment after the person gets discharged. Related expenses can be covered under Health Insurance for Parents.
Here is a list of common exclusions of Parents Health Insurance Policy. These are situations where you cannot raise a health insurance claim.
Cosmetic treatment (unless the need arises out of an accident)
Self-harm or suicide
Diagnostic tests (unless specifically mentioned as an inclusion)
Injuries from war
The cost of hearing aids
Expenses related to correcting the vision (including the cost of spectacles)
Any other exclusions as mentioned in the Health Insurance Policy
There are tax benefits available on Health Insurance for Parents under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961. The following figures are as per recent changes in Section 80D. However, they may change as per the corresponding year's financial regulations.
Amount of Rs. 25,000 is claimable under tax benefits for parents if they are less than 60 years of age.
Amount of Rs. Rs. 50,000 is claimable under tax benefits for parents if they are more than 60 years of age.
Yes, buying a health insurance policy for ageing parents is beneficial as it reduces out-of-pocket expenses while ensuring the best treatment for them.
It depends upon the age of parents and the terms & conditions of the insurance company. A few insurers may need basic information to issue a policy, while many insurance companies may ask for medical reports. You can check with your health insurance company and decide which insurer to pick.
Yes, you can add your parents to the Family Floater Health Plan. They can share the sum insured of the health plan.
Usually, a waiting period is applicable on pre-existing diseases. Meaning, you can claim only after a certain number of renewals. Please go through the "Waiting Period" section of your health policy to know more.
Mothers tend to ignore their health issues, citing monetary reasons or lack of time. A good health insurance plan can help them get the correct treatment at the right time. Thus, health insurance for a mother is important.
A Senior Citizen plan is one of the types of Parents Health Insurance plans. There is no direct difference between the two, and similar benefits can be availed. However, a Senior Citizen Health Insurance plan is for people above the age of 60 years.
A Family Health Insurance plan can help cover self, spouse, and parents. It can include parents if the policyholder does not wish to buy a separate health plan for parents. The sum insured can be shared among all the insured persons.
Medical expenses increase with age-related complications and can become a financial liability in the long run. Buying Health Insurance for Parents ensures that timely treatment is given to them without facing a financial loss. Thus, you need a health insurance policy to cover your parents.