Team AckoMay 20, 2022
A health insurance plan is not compulsory like a car insurance plan; but in 2020, one must look at it as a mandatory requirement. The ongoing COVID-19 crisis and other lifestyle-related issues have highlighted the importance of health insurance. Online insurance has made health insurance simple to understand, quick to purchase and hassle-free to claim. Nowadays, you have various options when it comes to buying a health insurance plan if you feel one plan is not enough. You can easily buy a second health insurance plan for enhanced coverage.
Some people are covered under group plans like an Employee Health Insurance or a Family Floater plan. Apart from these plans, they can opt for an Individual Health Plan. If someone has an Individual Health Plan, they can go for specific coverage like a Critical Illness Plan or a COVID-19 cover. Therefore, you can build a strong health insurance portfolio to ensure financial stability in a health crisis. Here’s how you can purchase a second health insurance plan and ensure wide-spread coverage.
There are two major ways in which you can purchase a second health insurance plan—you can either do it online or offline. The online process involves visiting your preferred health insurance company’s website and buying a suitable plan by making an online payment. The offline process involves visiting a health insurance company’s office or dealing with a certified health insurance agent and following their process to purchase the policy.
Purchasing a second health insurance plan is purely need-driven. Before buying the second cover, you must analyse your present health situation, check the cover offered by your first health insurance plan, and know the reasons for buying a second health insurance plan.
A 2nd health insurance plan or multiple health insurance policies can help to extend the coverage and enable efficient management of policies and claims. Here’s a list of prominent benefits associated with owning more than one health insurance policy.
Multiple health insurance plans will give you the advantage of wide-spread coverage. There are different types of policies in the market that offer enhanced coverage for you and your family. You can choose your second and subsequent policies based on what is not covered in your first policy.
Thanks to the option of buying multiple policies, you can have one generic policy and one specific policy. For example, you can have one Individual Health Insurance plan that covers basic hospitalisation and another Critical Illness Policy that covers deadly diseases like cancer.
Choosing a second health insurance policy allows you to ensure permanent coverage. For example, Employee Health Insurance is only active until the time you are a part of the company offering it. What if you leave the company and are hospitalized? In such a scenario, you will be left uncovered. Therefore, you can opt for a comprehensive Health Insurance Plan that offers permanent coverage until the end of the policy period and allows the facility to renew the policy.
A portfolio of health insurance plans can ensure adequate coverage. Depending upon your and your family’s needs, you can buy Individual covers, Critical Illness covers, Family Floater plan, COVID-19 insurance, Maternity cover, etc. to ensure adequate coverage. A combination of suitable plans will result in adequate coverage as compared to one generic plan.
When you have multiple policies, you can decide which policy to claim against. This can help you to keep one policy undisturbed and earn No Claim Bonus on it. For example, Mr A has both Employee Health Insurance and an Individual Health Plan. Unfortunately, he is hospitalised. Thankfully, both his policies cover hospitalisation.
Since the hospital bill is not too much, Mr A decides to raise a claim against the Employee Health Insurance policy and keep the Individual Plan claim-free, thereby keeping the option of benefiting from the No Claim Bonus renewal discount on policy renewal.
Buying multiple health insurance policies can help you save tax. You have the option to buy a health plan for yourself, your spouse, and parents, and avail applicable tax benefits as per section 80D of the Income Tax Act.
Also, read: Health Insurance Premium Calculator
Can you have health insurance policies from two different companies? The answer is, yes. Make sure to go through the fine print of the policy in detail before purchasing it. Clear all doubts by discussing them with the insurer’s customer support or sales team and purchase the plan when you have total clarity.
Also, before buying your second health insurance plan, consider the points given below, and then make the purchase decision.
Go through the policy coverage of your current plan. Make a general list of pros and cons and then go about buying your second health insurance policy accordingly. You need to check for details like co-pay clauses, room rent conditions, health insurance coverage for your family members, and other such inclusions.
Opt for a plan that offers lifetime renewability. This is crucial because purchasing wide-ranging health insurance becomes difficult and expensive as one grows older. The lifetime renewability feature in the plan will mean that the policy will serve you for a long time. This becomes important, especially if your current plan offers coverage only till a fixed age.
Nowadays, a lot of health insurance companies offer Top-up and Super Top-up plans. For additional coverage, you can either purchase a Top-up or a Super Top-up plan over and above your current policy or go for only such types of plans from a different insurer depending upon your preference. These types of plans offer coverage beyond a predefined threshold limit.
If you currently own a Defined-benefit plan, note its Sum Assured. Defined-benefits are those plans that offer an assured sum as claim settlement. Note the Sum Assured of your current plan. If you do not own a Defined-benefit plan and want to go for one, then also check the Sum Assured or the pay-out amount associated with the policy.
Just as you have the option of choosing additional coverage in the form of Top-up and Super Top-up plans on your existing coverage, a lot of companies also offer the option of a Critical Illness Add-on. You can go for it from the same insurer or buy it separately from a different one.
You might be familiar with the concept of mobile network portability—where you can switch to a different network provider if you are unsatisfied with the services of your current network provider or find a better one. The same concept is available in health insurance as well. Keep an eye out on this feature while purchasing a second insurance plan.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic is causing a lot of chaos. People are scared. The number of cases and disease-related deaths are on the rise. This has caused a lot of panic. People want to know if COVID-19 is covered by their health insurance policy. If you have similar doubts, simply get in touch with your insurer and share your policy details with them, they will help you to understand the coverage.If the policy doesn’t cover COVID-19, you can either buy another plan (that covers it) from the same insurer or buy a COVID-19 specific health insurance policy available in the market. You can opt for varied policies from a private health insurer or go for a standardised policy. There are health insurance policies like Arogya Sanjeevani, Corona Kavach and Corona Rakshak available in the Indian market.
Here’s a list of common questions associated with buying an additional health insurance policy.
Can I buy two health insurance policies from the same insurance company?
Yes, you can buy multiple health insurance policies from the same insurer.
Can I convert my Employee Health Insurance policy into an Individual plan?
Some insurers allow such type of conversion after a period. You can check the same with the insurance provider.
Is it possible to be a part of two group plans like Employee Health Insurance and a Family Floater plan?
Yes, such a combination is allowed while purchasing health insurance.
I want to switch my Individual plan to a different insurer but continue the Family Floater plan from the same insurer. Can this be done?
Yes, this type of change is possible.
Can I raise a claim from two health insurance companies?
In some cases, two different insurance companies come together to settle the claim. It depends upon the contribution clause and other terms and conditions of the policy.
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