India is among the countries which spend the lowest percentage of GDP on healthcare. This coupled with the fact that it has the second largest population on world, means that the government healthcare facilities alone don’t have the capacity to serve the healthcare needs of the country. As a result private healthcare sector has flourished in our country, and it is counted among the best healthcare markets to seek treatment. The downside of the larger role played by private sector is that the cost of treatment is very high for most of the families. In India, around 80% percent of the healthcare spending is Out of Pocket, that is people pay for their healthcare services from their savings.
In such scenario, it is very important that one is covered by Mediclaim cover. However, the question in pretty much every Indian’s mind is how to get the most affordable plan which covers the needs, or the most of them at least. Here we analyse and see if it makes sense to go only for affordability while choosing a health insurance cover, or there are other considerations as well.
Are affordable plans really effective?
The most obvious doubt in anyone’s mind while going for an affordable health insurance policy is whether the policy is going to be effective and will it serve the purpose when, god forbid, the need arises for its use.
Generally, buying an affordable health insurance plans means that one has to compromise on most of the aspects. That means, the most obvious places where an affordable health insurance cover cuts corner is the sum insured and cover amount. In addition, many of the conditions might be excluded, and the sub-limits, which were introduced back around 2007, would be higher in number and lower in amount. However, there are ways in which these limitations can be overcome.
First option is to go for customized mediclaim cover. HDFC Ergo is one of the leading medi claim providers which allow you to customize health cover as per your needs. This ensures that you are able to insure for the things that you are most concerned about while the plan being affordable overall. However, it also requires that you know your healthcare needs very well.
The other option is to go for family floater plan. Broadly speaking, that means that you buy a single consolidated Mediclaim policy to cover for your entire family rather than buying individual policies for each of the family member. Family floater plans are simple called family health care plan as well. Given that insurance companies get to provider cover for multiple individuals under one plan, they are willing to give great discounts on premiums, which results in savings for customers.
How to find out an affordable health insurance plan?
In the present online market of health insurance policies, it is easy to compare the options available. Comparison of the top health insurance plans will provide you with a better idea of the whole scenario. But, before you start comparing the plan, you need to know about the aspects that affect the premium of these policies. So, let us take a look at them.
- Sum insured: It is the maximum amount the insurance company agrees to pay when a claim is made by you. When you opt for a higher amount of sum insured, you end up paying a higher premium as well. For this reason, it is vital that you choose the right amount of sum insured. If you are young and healthy, there is no need of going for a higher sum insured. Going for a lower amount will make your health insurance policy more affordable for you.
- Deductible: A deductible is an amount you agree to shell out from your pocket before the policy kicks in. When you choose to pay a higher deductible, you end up paying a lesser premium for your health insurance policy. The deductible can be a fixed amount or a percentage of the total bill amount.
- Go for family floater plans: If you want to maximize the benefits of health insurance policy, it is better to choose a family floater plan than an individual one. HDFC Ergo is one of the best options you can consider in today’s market. Besides the advantage of cashless hospitalization, it also offers attractive discounts on its family floater plans. If you compare, you will always find the premium of a family health insurance plan to be lesser than the combined premium of multiple policies.
- Multi-year premium payment: This is another way of saving money on your health insurance policy. Companies often offer discounts to customers who pay an upfront premium for 2 or more years. Moreover, it will also make you feel relaxed for the next couple of years (until the expiry date of your policy).
- Buy when young: Spending money on health insurance products from an early age is a good habit. Once you turn 25, you must get yourself covered by a policy. Even a basic policy from a company like HDFC Ergo can prove to be sufficient enough for your healthcare requirements.
So, those are some of the ways that can help you find cheaper or affordable healthcare insurance policies in India. Before you buy one, you must compare the policies online. Through online comparison, you would get a better idea of the pros and cons of the available options. It will offer you more clarity, which in turn will make the process of selecting a policy a lot easier for you.