The truth is that there are a wide variety of health insurance plans available in India. You have to choose according to your needs and budget. Nowadays, the health insurance sector of India is witnessing revolutionizing changes with more and more insurance companies offering various types of health insurance plans to their customers. There are even specially designed health insurance plans for cardiac patients or diabetic patients. This wide variety of health insurance is due to growing needs of people concerning their health issues. The growing pollution rates, increased usage of junk foods and contaminated vegetables and fruits only contribute to growing need for health insurance. Also, the cost of medical treatments is also on the rise due to increase in the occurrence of diseases and inflation rates.
Earlier, people used to think about getting health insurance only during mid-thirties or early forties. But, nowadays, people start applying for health insurance by mid-twenties itself unable to withstand the rising hospital bills. Let us take a look at the broad classification of health insurance:
Indemnity Health Insurance Plan
The term indemnity refers to compensation provided for damages and losses. An indemnity insurance plan is defined as putting the insured person back in the same financial position he/she was before the incident happened. This insurance covers all the hospital costs including medical treatment bills, cost of medicals and cost of hospital stay.
But, this plan is subject to the maximum amount of money the policyholder had insured for. For instance, if the policyholder had taken an indemnity plan for one lakh and their hospital bill came around eighty thousand, then the insurance company will pay the full amount for the treatment. But, if the same person had incurred an expense of one lakh and ten thousand at the hospital, then the insurance company will only pay the maximum amount insured, which is one lakhs. The rest of the money, ten thousand will have to be paid by the person.
There are three different types of indemnity health insurance plans:
- Mediclaim Health Insurance Plan
This one is the most popular and most commonly chosen health insurance plan. This plan also has been here for ages and is not a newly introduced plan. It covers the cost of hospitalization, costs before and after hospitalization, and also the cost of surgeries. It covers the ambulance charges too. The plan reimburses all your hospital bills, and you need not worry much about expenses related to hospitalization.
- Top-Up Health Insurance Plan
The name itself denotes what this plan implies to do for you. It helps in topping up or increasing your health coverage. These plans can be taken as a supplementary plan along with your main health insurance plan. If your health insurance plan doesn’t cover a particular need of yours, then you can opt for a top-up plan along with your original plan. It won’t cost much as it is only a supplementary plan.
The plan contains a deductible limit which will be the limit up to which your claims will not be met by this plan. In case your claim exceeds this limit, the top up plan will be triggered, and any excess amount will be paid by it. You can choose this plan if you already have a mediclaim plan and its base sum is the same as the deductible limit of the top-up plan. For instance, if you own a mediclaim plan for one lakh, you can choose a top-up plan for two lakhs. Then choose the deductible limit as one lakh. So, if you raise a claim of one lakh and ten thousand, the remaining ten thousand will be paid by the top-up plan.
- Super Top-Up Health Insurance Plan
As the name itself suggests, it is a better version of the top-up health insurance plan. It offers better coverage than the top-up plan. In the case of a top-up plan, the claim a person makes is the trigger. If the claim always comes under the deductible limit, then the top-up plan stays untouched.
Whereas, in the case of a super top-up plan, the aggregate total amount claimed in a policy year is also considered. If the aggregate claim is more than the deductible limit, then the super top-up plan is triggered. For instance, if you claim sixty thousand and eighty thousand in two different instances during a policy period, with a deductible limit of one lakh, the top-up plan won’t be triggered. But the super-top up plan will be triggered, and it will pay the extra forty thousand rupees.
Defined Benefit Health Insurance Plans
This plan is said to be opposite of indemnity plans. It is also called as fixed benefit plans. It will pay a fixed amount on a daily basis once a claim is made by the insurer. It doesn’t check the actual amount of expense incurred in the hospital. For instance, if you have chosen a fixed amount of five thousand to be paid, it will pay you five thousand on a daily basis even if your hospital expenses are three thousand per day or seven thousand per day.
- Critical Illness Defined Benefit Plan
This plan is specially aimed to provide special coverage during cases of critical illness. The plan covers a list of critical illness, and this list might change from one insurance provider to another. Still, in case of any critical illness diagnosis, the insurance company pays a lump sum to the person irrespective of the expenses related to it.
- Hospital Daily Cash Defined Benefit Plan
This plan, as already explained, provides you with a fixed sum of money in case of hospitalization. The amount will not depend on the actual expenditure at the hospital. It will only depend on the amount fixed earlier under the defined benefit plan.
These are some of the common types of health insurance plans. Always inquire with your insurance provider to know the special health insurance plans offered by them. Understand the coverage and benefits of each plan and then decide in accordance with your needs and budget.