- Date : 25/10/2022
- Read: 4 mins
Importance of Senior Citizen Health Insurance plans
Health insurance can be seen as an advance payment paid periodically for a service that you may or may not avail of. Detractors would argue that it is a waste of money if you end up not raising a health claim at all. However, one serious illness and the approved claim amount would seem like a godsend.
Any insurance is a protection against contingency, and chances are that you may not face such contingency. However, questioning it would be questioning the basic tenet of an industry that is globally valued at over $5.8 trillion! India as a country aspires to be that big by the end of this decade.
Also Read: Insurance for senior citizens is it worth it
Senior Citizen Health Insurance
Health insurance for senior citizens in India is often questioned for its value for money. This is largely because if you buy health insurance for parents or grandparents, the premium is noticeably higher. Therefore, let us decide its worth by examining some of the common perceptions around it.
- The need – The human body becomes more susceptible to illnesses with age. A senior citizen may be hale and hearty but face a bigger risk of medical conditions compared to a younger person. Underlying conditions can develop into full-fledged problems in no time. Besides, health insurance policies have a waiting period for pre-existing and specific diseases. Therefore, it is better to get them insured when they are still healthy so that they can see off the waiting period without any medical emergency.
- Family package – Despite the higher annual or monthly premium it is always advisable to get separate health insurance for senior citizens. Yes, they can be included in the family floater. But a family floater is not designed keeping senior citizen health needs in mind, as they often have a need for higher coverage. A specialised senior citizen health insurance will have regular preventive health check-ups, daycare and checkups, and may also have a shorter waiting period.
- Pre-existing diseases – Many senior citizens may have pre-existing diseases. In such cases they hesitate to go for health insurance coverage, fearing their application may be rejected. However, you can look for policies that offer shorter waiting period and allows pre-existing conditions. In case of future aggravation of such conditions, there will be a health cover to fall back upon.
- Premium – With age the probability of health insurance claims increases. This is the reason why health insurance premium rises with age. You must also note that due to the higher probability of hospitalisation, and treatment-related complications in advanced age, the cost of treatment can be high as well. Besides, there is a tax deduction on the money spent on health plans, with a higher amount allowed in the case of senior citizens. So, the premium can turn out to be money well spent.
Also Read: Your guide to health insurance
Why go for Senior Citizen Health Insurance
Health problems like diabetes and heart issues are quite common these days. India records two heart attacks every minute, and the same with air pollution. For many senior citizens, these threats are unavoidable. Besides, at 14%, medical inflation in India is the highest among all Asian countries.
The cost of treatment for open heart surgery in a regular private hospital can be anywhere from Rs 1.75 lakhs to Rs 4.25 lakhs. A bypass surgery, too, can cost Rs 4 lakhs. Diabetic surgery in leading hospitals is estimated to cost between Rs 5.3 to Rs 5.9 lakhs. Apart from surgical costs, a lengthy treatment can severely drain the family's savings. Senior citizen health insurance is worth it despite a higher premium because it can potentially protect the retirement corpus and help the elderly retain their wealth. Also read about the Best health insurance policy for senior citizens 2022 things to consider