Health Insurance for TB Patients in India

Tuberculosis is a contagious disease that is caused by an infection in the human lungs. As per the World Health Organization (WHO), Tuberculosis is among the top 10 causes of death across the globe. The infection can spread to other body parts like the ovaries, spine, and brain.  It is caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria.

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      In most cases people do not have symptoms and some of the most common symptoms include weight loss, cough (sometimes blood-tinged), night sweats, and fever.

      The hospitalization treatment can get expensive; therefore, it is suggested to buy a health insurance policy that covers the cost of hospitalization. You can also look for a critical illness policy that covers major illnesses along with TB treatment.

      Over the past few years, the cost of hospitalization has raised drastically in both rural and urban areas. And comprehensive health insurance seems to be the only solution to cope up with such exorbitant medical expenses.

      Symptoms of TB

      When a person gets infected with TB, his lungs are the first body part that gets affected. The bacteria can infect other body parts such as the liver spleen, kidney, and brain, as well. Tuberculosis symptoms are most common in the respiratory system. Though, the TB bacteria can have an adverse effect on other organs like kidney, spleen and even the brain. Different patients can experience different symptoms. 

      Listed below are the most common symptoms of Tuberculosis in India:

      • Fatigue
      • Persistent cough
      • Pain while breathing
      • Night sweats
      • Weight loss
      • Appetite loss

      In a person without any symptoms, it is called as latent TB. In such cases, the person gets infected but doesn’t show any symptoms as the TB bacteria continue to remain dormant. 

      Cost of Tuberculosis Treatment in India

      Tuberculosis treatment is a lengthy process. It can take months to be treated, unlike other bacterial infections that only take a few weeks. The patient needs to take a combination of medications for six to nine months. It is essential for the patient to complete the entire course otherwise the disease can relapse.

      After all the tests are conducted the doctor can assess what medicines are to be prescribed as the TB bacteria might be resistant to certain drugs. Some of the most common combinations of medicines used to treat tuberculosis are Isoniazid, Pyrazinamide, Ethambutol, Rifampin, and Rifapentine.

      TB medications are used to treat side effects like loss of appetite, dark urine, vomiting, fever, and jaundice. And if you have other side effects, during the course of TB medications, then you should inform your doctor immediately.

      Tuberculosis can be prevented with vaccination. People residing in India who are at a higher risk can get vaccinated and vaccinations are available for children as well. The vaccine generally used in India is Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) to protect from TB strains.

      How is TB Diagnosed?

      Anyone who is having a persistent cough is advised to immediately consult a doctor as it can be the first sign of Tuberculosis. The doctor will get some gets tests done if you showcase Tuberculosis symptoms.

       Listed below are the tests that are conducted to diagnose the presence of TB infection in your body: 

      • AFB (Acid-Fast Bacillus) Smear and Culture 
      • Blood test for TB Infection 
      • Chest X-Ray  
      • TB Screening  
      • Tuberculin Skin Testing 

      In case the test results remain unclear, the doctor would suggest a chest CT scan or a lung biopsy. What is important is to get the testing done on time as Tuberculosis can be fatal if it does not get treated on-time.

      Tuberculosis is airborne and can easily be spread. And in India, it is not possible to avoid crowded places that make a person very susceptible to TB infection. It is a smart idea to be prepared in advance with a health insurance policy for the family as a pre-emptive measure as you can never be too sure when going out in the crowds on a daily basis.

      What Is Covered Under Health Insurance for Tuberculosis?

      Tuberculosis is life-threatening, and people of all the age especially with a weaker immune system, are more vulnerable to TB infection. For this reason, it is highly recommended to have health insurance to be able to meet the cost of the treatment in case it becomes fatal or requires hospitalization for a longer duration.

      • Hospitalization Expenses- Get reimbursements for treatment costs up to Rs. 50,000/- for specified conditions
      • Diagnosis before hospitalization- Expenses for diagnostic tests during or before hospitalization
      • Doctor’s fees- Expenses for doctor’s fees during, before and after hospitalization
      • Expenses for medications- Expenses for medications during before, and after hospitalization
      • Daily Room Rent- Daily Room Rent up to Rs. 1000/- per day for Normal and Rs. 2000 per day for ICU. All other charges are in accordance with the room rent restriction
      • Treatment charges- Treatment charges, which include room rental, ICU, transfusion, doctor fees, medicines, and tests

      Bottom Line

      While choosing a good health insurance plan you must offer coverage for all the expenditures that you incur during Tuberculosis treatment. It is quite easy these days to get yourself health insurance cover as you can find and compare different options online.

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