Long-Term Health Insurance: All You Need to Know

Health care has become a significant expense, with medical inflation going as high as 15% in India. In this situation, health insurance is highly recommended to prevent your hard-earned savings from getting exhausted. In fact, the insurance market is full of long-term health insurance plans at competitive prices. If you are new to this concept, read on to know everything about long-term health insurance.

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      What is Long-Term Health Insurance?

      Long-term health insurance is a type of health insurance plan that has a tenure of 2-3 years. It is an alternative to regular 1-year health insurance plans as you can lock up your coverage and premium for 2-3 years. However, long-term health insurance plans involve paying the premiums for 2-3 years at the time of policy purchase.

      Long-term health insurance plans are ideal for people who want uninterrupted medical coverage without the hassle of renewing their policy every year. Besides, these plans are available for a discounted premium compared to the total premium paid for a 1-year health insurance plan renewed annually.

      Benefits of Long-Term Health Insurance Plans

      The following are the benefits of investing in long-term health insurance:

      1. Longer Cover Duration - One of the significant benefits of investing in a long-term health insurance plan is the long cover duration. Unlike regular health plans, long-term health policies cover you and your dependents for at least 2-3 years, depending on your policy tenure. Thus, you and your family are protected against unforeseen medical emergencies for a longer period of time.
      2. Discounted Premiums – Long-term health insurance plans are usually available for a discounted price as compared to regular or short-term health plans. This happens because most insurers offer a tenure discount of 5-10% on long-term health policies. Thus, it significantly reduces the premium amount. 
      3. No Need for Annual Renewals – Another benefit of long-term health plans is that you do not have to renew your policy every year. Since this type of health insurance comes with a tenure of more than 1 year, you need to renew your policy only after 2-3 years. Thus, it saves you from the financial stress of paying the premium every year. 
      4. Pre-Existing Disease Coverage – All health plans cover pre-existing diseases after a waiting period of 2 to 4 years. In the case of regular health plans, pre-existing disease coverage can be availed after 2 to 5 renewals. However, if you have a long-term health insurance policy, your pre-existing diseases may be covered from 2nd or 3rd renewal. Therefore, it reduces the number of renewals before PED cover can be availed.
      5. No Loss of No Claim Bonus – Accumulated No Claim Bonus or NCB can be lost if you fail to renew your policy on time. With a long-term health plan, your NCB is safe for 2-3 years. Thus, you can build your NCB much faster than regular health plans.
      6. No Hike in Premiums – Whenever a health policy is renewed, the premium is revised considering the insured’s age and health conditions. In the case of long-term health plans, there is no premium revision for 2-3 years unless the policy is due for renewal. Thus, it reduces the chances of any hike in premiums.
      7. Tax Benefits – According to Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, you can enjoy tax deductions on health insurance premiums. Therefore, by purchasing a long-term health insurance plan, you can lower your tax liabilities.

      Difference Between Short-Term, Regular and Long-Term Health Insurance

      The following table highlights the differences between short-term, regular and long-term health insurance plans:

      Factors Short-Term Health Insurance Regular Health Insurance Long-Term Health Insurance
      Policy Tenure The policy is available for a duration of 3 months to 1 year. The policy tenure is 1 year. The policy is applicable for a duration of 2/ 3 years.
      Pre-Existing Disease Coverage Pre-existing health conditions may not be covered. Pre-existing conditions are covered after 2 to 5 renewals. Pre-existing conditions are covered from 2nd or 3rd renewal.
      Premium Affordable premiums Regular premiums that can be reduced with discounts Discounted premiums due to long-term policy discount
      Add-Ons No add-ons are provided Add-ons are provided to increase the scope of policy coverage Add-on covers are available

      Summing It Up

      Long-Term Health Insurance plans are always a good idea if you want discounted premiums and continued coverage for more than a year. However, you will have to pay 2-3 years of premiums in one go to buy long-term plans, which may be difficult to arrange for several people. 

      If you decide to buy this mediclaim policy, remember to compare plans from different insurers to choose the best long-term health insurance policy that matches your needs and requirements. Alternatively, you can contact health insurance experts at Policybazaar to learn about the most suitable long-term health insurance for your lifestyle and requirements.

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      Disclaimer: Policybazaar does not endorse, rate or recommend any particular insurer or insurance product offered by an insurer.

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