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Beyond the Basics: Additional Health Insurance Plans Benefit to Look For
Beyond the Basics: Additional Health Insurance Plans Benefit to Look For

Getting a basic health insurance plan ticks off the most crucial box - providing financial protection against medical emergencies. But here's the thing - healthcare costs are so ridiculously high these days that a basic plan may just not cut it. This is why you should examine plans that go beyond basic hospitalisation.

Cover More People

Most basic health insurance plans cover yourself, your spouse, and your children. Look for policies that allow coverage for:

Parents and in-laws

Opt for family floater plans that cover your parents/in-laws under one sum insured. This offers better value than individual plans.

Siblings

Some insurers offer sibling floater plans to cover unmarried and financially dependent siblings. This can be more affordable than separate policies.  

Extended family

Few insurers provide coverage for grandchildren, in-laws' parents, and sisters-in-law under family definitions.

Enhanced Maternity Benefits

While basic health plans include maternity coverage, the sub-limits may fall short. Go for policies with:  

  • Higher maternity sub-limits: ₹60,000-₹100,000 coverage will allow better financial planning for pregnancy and childbirth costs.
  • Pre/post-natal coverage: Look for policies covering pre/post-natal consultations, medications, and tests for seamless care.
  • Newborn baby coverage: Plans like Max Bupa's Health Pulse offer baby coverage from birth without waiting periods.

More Preventive Health Services

Basic health insurance in India still focuses more on hospitalisation. However, look for plans that offer:

  • Annual health check-ups: Opt for policies providing one free check-up annually to diagnose issues early.
  • Vaccination coverage: Certain plans cover vaccination costs for flu, HPV, and other diseases under OPD treatment.
  • Health & wellness services: Some insurers like ManipalCigna provide unlimited teleconsultations, health coaching, etc., to monitor health better.

Focused Protection Plans

While basic health plans offer adequate protection for common illnesses, you may need focused insurance if prone to specific conditions, such as:

  • Critical illness plans: Get dedicated coverage up to ₹20 lakhs for serious illnesses like cancer, strokes, heart attacks, etc.
  • Daycare procedures: Some plans let you treat daycare surgeries like arthroscopies, stent insertions, etc., without affecting base policy sums insured.
  • Mental wellness coverage: Opt for specialised plans covering counselling costs, psychiatric treatment, and rehabilitation for mental health issues.
  • AYUSH Coverage: Many insurers now offer the option to cover alternative medical systems like Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy under health policies. This allows access to non-invasive, natural treatments that can be beneficial for certain conditions, especially for the elderly.

Enhanced International Coverage

If you frequently travel abroad, get enhanced overseas insurance with:

  • Higher sub-limits: Upgrade to plans which provide ₹10-50 lakhs coverage per overseas trip for adequate financial aid.  
  • Wider geographical scope: Go for worldwide or multi-trip overseas packages covering the US, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, etc., without restrictions.
  • No sub-limits on specific treatments: Certain overseas plans don't impose limits on hospitalisation, daily allowance, etc.

Optional Add-On Covers

Finally, most insurers offer add-ons to customise plans as per unique needs:

  • Premium waiver: Waive future premiums in case of accidental permanent disabilities.
  • Personal accident cover: Get extra coverage for accidental deaths, fractures, burns and other accident-based impairments.

Tips to Choose the Right Additional Health Plans

With countless options, choosing appropriate add-ons that align with your needs can be confusing. Here are some useful tips:

Analyse Existing Policies First

Review what current base, corporate or group insurance policies cover to identify gaps in coverage. This determines what add-ons are necessary.

Assess Individual Risk Factors

Consider pre-existing diseases lifestyle diseases you are prone to while opting for critical illness or specialised covers.

Compare Similar Policy Plans

Compare available family floater plans from leading insurers on sub-limits, definitions, etc., before zeroing down on one.

Avoid Overinsurance

Using too many plans for the same condition amounts to insurance duplication and overpayment of premiums.

Re-evaluate Annually

Life stages like marriage or new babies change insurance needs. Review chosen plans annually and enhance or reduce covers accordingly.

Leverage Insurer Tie-Ups

Certain health plans have beneficial tie-ups with pharmacies, healthcare providers, etc. Leverage these for better claim settlements.

The Bottom Line

Evaluate not just the basics but also additional benefits when choosing health plans. Opting for policies more aligned with your lifestyle and risks ensures you get well-rounded coverage with fewer gaps. This offers superior financial security and peace of mind.

 

 

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