Gone are the days when your Mediclaim policy covered only your hospitalisation expenses. You can now cover your visits to the doctor, medicine bills, diagnostic tests and maternity expenses as well.
This is due to increasing competition with the entry of five non-life insurers and two stand alone health insurance companies since 2007. All 21 life insurance players have also been allowed to offer health covers.
“We hope to see many more innovations in the health insurance sector which is good for the insured,” Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority chairman J Hari Narayan told HT.
“We recently launched Easy Health Individual Insurance Plan that covers maternity expenses after six claim-free years and free health check-ups after three claim-free years,” said Antony Jacob, CEO, Apollo DKV Health Insurance.
However, these benefits have a price — be ready to shell out more than double of what you are paying now for the standard medical cover if you want them.
If you are a 30-year-old with a Rs 5-lakh cover, Apollo DKV will charge you Rs 11,094 per annum, which will cover your dental care, spectacles and hearing aids up to a mere Rs 5,000.
Minus these features, the cost of the policy would be Rs 5,100.
Last month, Star Health and Allied Insurance launched a policy that covers ‘critical illnesses’ like cancer, heart diseases, kidney failure and stroke. “If an insured contracts any of these, he is paid a lumpsum,” said CMD V. Jagannathan. The cost: Rs 8,400.
By end of 2008-09, health insurance premium has grown over 10-fold to Rs 6,874 crore from a level of Rs 675 crore in 2001-02.