As the number of COVID-19 patients continues to surge in India, the need of a COVID-19 health insurance policy becomes ineluctable. People are not only suffering from coronavirus but also the financial burden imposed upon them by the hospitals. Be it government sector hospitals or private sector hospitals, the prices for COVID-19 treatment in both, are sky-high. It’s become exceedingly difficult for the common man to choose his health over money. The fear of COVID-19 is rising not just because people are afraid of the virus, but also because of the financial implications of the treatment.
Even the people who have health insurance policies are running short of a minimum of Rs 50,000 – Rs 100000 for their treatment costs. Taking account of the daunting situation, The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai), has made it compulsory for all general and health insurance companies to offer short term COVID-19 health insurance policies. The insurance regulating authority of India has also extended this proposal to other insurers, such as life insurance companies.
Why can’t Regular Health Policies Cover COVID-19 Costs?
Insurers had asked the insurance regulator of India about the reasons why the regular health policies aren’t able to cover the COVID-19 costs. There are 3 main reasons, why the people are being forced to make out-of-pocket payments.
First, the hospitals are charging the COVID-19 patients for the special infrastructure required for the treatment. This includes a resident doctor, nursing staff, hygiene, and special care. These services are not covered in regular health insurance policies.
Second, the hospitals are charging a hefty amount for special hospital rooms which are substantially more expensive than regular rooms. Thirdly, hospitals are deducting 10-15% of the health insurance cover for non-medical requirements, such as masks and PPE kits (PPE is charged at 9000 per day). This is way more than the 3-5% deductions made in the treatment of non-COVID diseases.
The need of the hour is a possible insurance add-on or a short-term COVID-19 health policy with a minimum cover of 2 lakhs to protect the common man from the hefty deductions charged by the hospitals.
Why Should I Opt for COVID-19 Health Insurance Policy?
It is essential to get yourself and your family insured for COVID-19, if you don’t have any health insurance, or if your present insurance doesn’t cover your hospital costs. The hospitalization cost due to COVID-19 is much higher as compared to non-COVID diseases. Therefore, it is better to be insured now than to face consequences later on.
Currently, 2 types of COVID-19 health insurance plans are available. First is the indemnity plan, which covers the actual cost of hospital bills. The second is the benefits plan, wherein a predefined sum of money is paid in the event of a claim. You can choose between the two policies, or even opt for a combination of both depending on your needs.
Does Health Insurance Cover Quarantine Expenses?
Regular health insurance does not cover hospitalization or quarantine costs. Hence, a special health insurance policy for COVID becomes all the more necessary. Taking cognizance of the situation, Edelweiss General Insurance has come out with a COVID-19 health insurance policy which will also cover your quarantine costs. All those who are under government-run quarantine facilities or self-isolation will be able to claim the benefits of the policy for the entire quarantine period. An added benefit of this policy is that it covers the costs of COVID-19 tests as well.
The insurance company has further extended its services to the people under domiciliary hospitalization. Since public transports in the country are not running on their full capacity, the insurer has decided to offer the benefits of the claim to a patient who lives in a remote location and is unable to reach a hospital in the quarantine period. In such cases, the policyholder can visit the nearest hospital and get treated without worrying about the hospitalization costs.
The Edelweiss General Insurance Company also won hearts after claiming to waive off the initial waiting period of 30 days after buying a policy. This offer will apply to both Edelweiss Group Health Insurance policies and Edelweiss Health Insurance until the crisis is declared as abated by the World Health Organization.
So don’t let the coronavirus beat you and your family. Be responsible and get yourself and your family insured for COVID-19. Let’s beat it together!