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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Right Health Insurance Cover for Parents

Buy Health Insurance Cover for Parents Online

Rising healthcare inflation has made higher insurance covers, particularly for senior citizens, a necessity.

However, you need to choose wisely from the products available to reap maximum benefits.
While health insurance cov er for parents under em ployers' group schemes is a huge source of comfort for salaried individuals, there is also a growing realisation that this may not be adequate. Healthcare inflation is estimated to be rising at 12-18% per annum and most group schemes offer a family floater cover of `2-3 lakh. Moreover, many employers are withdrawing parental coverage altogether or imposing restrictions like copay and premium sharing to contain costs.

Why buy independent covers

In the current scenario, enhancing coverage for your parents, who tend to be more prone to ailments, is an absolute must. It's best to buy separate cover for your elderly parents as the chances of claims are higher, potentially leaving very little insured for the other members.

Since group covers typically do not exclude pre-existing diseases, they are useful when your independent policy's waiting period clause is in force. Your pre-existing diseases will be covered and yet, your individual policy will have a better claim history.As a result, you will be able to retain the noclaim bonuses on your independent policy.

The earlier you buy a policy for your parents, the better will be the benefits. Many products impose restrictions if the individual gets the cover at an older age. Many insurers have a mandatory co-payment clause if the age of entry is higher. This means that if an individual buys a fresh policy at under 60, they may not be burdened with a co-payment clause. Whereas, a 65-yearold individual will have to live with restrictions like co-payment throughout.

While it is clear that you must buy a separate policy for your parents, you also need to do your homework to choose the best products from the ones available.

Cover from employers

If your employer offers you the option of funding your parents' insurance as part of the group cover or lets you enhance the cover at an additional cost, you must consider it.This is because it is easier to secure a policy under the corporate cover route, as typically, insurers do not deny coverage. Moreover, the claim settlement process for group covers is smoother.

However, insurers feel such policies, whether base or voluntary group top-up covers, tend to become unviable for employers and insurers over time, resulting in scrapping of the facility.

Remember that covers offered by employers cease to exist when you switch jobs. You will then have to port to the same insurer's retail policy. Be sure to enquire about this process and the individual cover's terms and conditions.

Senior citizens' policy

If your parents are senior citizens, you can look at dedicated products that insurers offer. The key advantage of most senior citizen policies is the shorter waiting period of one to two years for pre-existing illnesses, compared to the standard waiting period of four years under regular policies. On the flipside, they carry a co-payment clause. Such covers should be considered in spite of restrictions, as it is difficult for senior citizens over the age of 65 to buy independent policies

Top-up policy

While a full-fledged health cover independent of your employers' group scheme is always preferable, it might not fit into the your budget. As an alternative, you can look at top-up covers to enhance your parents' coverage, as they are likely to be cheaper than independent covers, including senior citizen policies. If your parents are already covered under your employers' group health scheme, it makes sense to buy a top-up cover that can take care of higher claims. Moreover, the maximum cover available under top-ups is usually higher than that of senior citizen policies.Keep in mind, that top-up covers kick in only after your base sum insured is exhausted.

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