Elderly individuals are more prone to contracting infections and diseases. It is, therefore, essential to buy health insurance if you have elderly parents at home. Health insurance policies for senior citizens, however, are way different from health plans meant for younger individuals. Let us discuss all that you need to know while choosing the best health insurance for your parents.
What is a senior citizen health insurance policy?
Like all other health insurance policies, it is a contract between two parties – insurance companies and insured – wherein the policyholder pays a premium and in return the insurer covers the medical expenses incurred of the insured during hospitalisation.Medical insurance policies for senior citizens are meant for people who are 60 years or above in age. The premium amount for a senior citizen health insurance is higher than that of regular health insurance policies.
Four term and conditions that are specific to senior citizen health plans
There are four terms and conditions that are specific to senior citizen health insurance policies. They also vastly differ from regular health plans. They are waiting period clause, co-payment clause, exclusions and sub-limit. All health insurance companies mention these in the fine print. Check them before buying a health insurance policy for your parents.
Waiting Period: Waiting period is the specific time period from the date of policy purchase during which a policyholder is not entitled to any claims. Almost all health insurance policies have a waiting period clause that is applicable on pre-existing illness. The waiting period is usually two-four years.
Insured companies have cut the waiting period in health insurance policies for senior citizens, considering the fact that chances of immediate hospitalisation of such policyholders are more.
Co-payment clause: It is a clause, mentioned in your policy, wherein you have to pay your share of the hospital expenses. And the health insurance company covers the rest. Most senior citizen health insurance policies come with a co-payment clause.
The co-payment clause is related to the waiting period offered in the plan. If the waiting period is lower, the portion of co-payment will be on the higher side and vice versa. Look out for these two clauses while buying a health insurance policy for parents.
In senior citizen health insurance policies, the percentage of co-payment for the policyholder is between 10 percent and 30 per cent.
Exclusions: Medical conditions or healthcare expenses that are not covered by your health plan are called exclusions. Many health insurance policies for senior citizens have a number of exclusions and they would be mentioned in the policy. Keep a tab on them.
Sub-limits: It is a cap of how much a policyholder can claim for a particular case of procedure. Many health plans for senior citizens come with a list of exclusions like cataract surgery, knee-cap surgery, kidney dialysis etc. Before buying a health insurance policy for your parents check what are the terms as conditions for sub-limits.
There are two other things that you need to check before buying a health insurance policy for your parents post-hospitalisation cost and day-care treatment.
Mostly, the post hospitalisation eligibility is 60 -90 days. However, in many health insurance policies for senior citizens, the post- hospitalisation period has been lowered significantly. Similarly, for some health insurance plans for senior citizens, the number of day-care facilities might be as low as 8 to 10.
Income-tax benefit on health Insurance policies for parents: Like other health insurance policies, if you buy such specific policies, you are eligible for income-taxbenefit under Section 80D of Income Tax Act.
Disclaimer: The above information is indicative in nature. For more details on the risk factor, terms and conditions, please refer to the Sales Brochure and Policy Wordings carefully before concluding a sale.