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Importance of General Insurance Amidst COVID-19

Ever since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, there has been a panicky situation, which has got no stop yet.

The World Health Organization has already declared COVID-19 a pandemic, however, a pandemic, which is controllable. There is no doubt that the world is currently undergoing a major global health crisis.

The Figures Say It All

There has been a total of 8, 71, 985 cases of COVID-19 and about 43, 262 demises across the globe (as per the data shared by worldometers on April 01, 2020).

In India, as per the latest data shared by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (on 01 April 2020) currently, the active cases of COVID-19 in the country are 1466. Besides, a total number of 132 cases have been cured/ discharged.

Brief Overview of COVID-19

The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is an infectious disease, which can easily be transmitted and the most recent discovered coronavirus. This outbreak of COVID-19 began in Wuhan, China.

Some of the most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, dry coughing, breathing issues followed pneumonia. The symptoms initially are mild and gradually get increased. In case you encounter such symptoms, seek medical help immediately.

This virus is transmissible and one can easily be infected if they inhale in droplets from any individual with COVID-19 who either exhales or coughs out droplets. Therefore, as a responsible individual, we need to maintain a social distance of at least 1 meter or 3 ft. From any person who is sick or ill.

The central government of India has already initiated lockdown in the entire nation for the betterment till April 15, 2020, in the wake of growing COVID-19 cases. However, as a responsible individual one should also practise some preventive measures to ensure the safety of oneself and others such as wash your hands with an alcohol-based hand wash, cover your mouth while you sneeze or cough, maintain respiratory hygiene, eat healthily, do not touch your eyes, mouth or nose unnecessarily, stay updated and follow the advisories issued by the government, use mask, avoid any kind of travel and above all Stay Home.

How General Insurance Companies Will Be Helpful?

Some of the prominent general insurance companies in India such as Digit Healthcare and Star Health have already introduced the novel coronavirus policy to provide cover to those who test positive for COVID-19.

These policies will be accessible for up to one year, however, it cannot be renewed as of now. The policy can be availed by any of the Indian citizen based on certain eligibility parameters such as age, coverage based on travel history, and so on. These policies will offer a quick solution to those people who do not have a health insurance cover and desire to be protected against the COVID-19.

However, it is recommendable that before you buy the policy, give it a careful read.

Will a Health Insurance Policy Provide Cover For Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

Well, this has surely been of the primary concerns for all the policyholders of the health insurance policy.

As per the latest guidelines of the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India, have already issued a statement, which states that the cases of COVID-19 should be expeditiously handled and hospitalization cover must be provided in the existing health insurance policy. If the hospitalization has been for more than 24 hours then the health insurance claim will be processed by the health insurance provider as per the regular norms.

The claim amount will remain limited to the by the sum insured by the health insurance policy.

In case your health insurance policy remains within the waiting period, your claim will be rejected. Besides, if the insured gets infected from any of the infected family members who have a travel history of the COVID-19 affected countries then the mediclaim will not get settled.  Companies such as Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, SBI General Insurance, etc. have been addressing the cases with care.

In any case, it is advised to contact your health insurance provider for further clarifications.

Will ‘Loss of Profit’ Provide Cover Under Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

There are companies amidst the outbreak of coronavirus are eyeing to claim for the incurred loss under ‘loss of profit’ clause.

In case you are unaware in regards to the same the ‘loss of profit’ clause essentially provides a cover under circumstances when a factory has to close under any adverse situations such as a fire or any major mishap/ accident.

Most likely, the corporations essentially grasp two sorts of insurance policies that are material damage policy and business interruption policy. A material damage policy will come to your rescue when the loss incurred to the property is due to perils such as flood, fire or mechanical breakdown. On the other hand, business interruption policy will come into effect when a loss of profit has incurred as per the clauses discussed within the material damage policy.

In the current scenario, the losses occurred are majorly due to the novel coronavirus. Companies who had taken general insurance policies, which would shield them under any unforeseen events, remain in a mental state of confusions, queries and stress.

Besides, a cover is provided if the particular peril is insured already in the policy schedule. Also, the policyholder may likely file a claim within the ‘Acts of God’ clause or ‘Force Majeure’.

If you are also one of those who are in a dilemma in regards to the same, it is better to reach out to the general insurance provider and get the doubts and queries clarified. Moreover, make sure that you have all the general insurance papers handy and in the future, before you sign the dotted lines, make sure that you read and re-read the policy schedule thoroughly and understand the inclusions and exclusions offered within the general insurance policy.

Parting Notes

It is important to be adequately covered throughout and not wait for another pandemic or epidemic situation.

Whether you are travelling for a short period or a longer period, secure your journey with a comprehensive travel insurance policy. Likewise, secure the health of yourself and your family with a health insurance policy.

Before you buy the correct type of general insurance policy, we highly recommend you to go through the terms and conditions of the policy. It is to be understood that policies and conditions may not be the same and change from one general insurance company to the other.

In case of any questions around insurance, free feel to get in touch with Policybazaar by dialling the helpline number 0124-6372005, which is accessible all seven days a week from morning 10:00 a.m. to 07:00 p.m.

Written By: PolicyBazaar - Updated: 15 July 2020

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