Insurance by its very definition covers an unexpected, unfortunate eventuality. However, getting pregnant and giving birth to a child is a planned and happily awaited event, everyone desires at some point in life. That is the reason; maternity cover does not come as standalone insurance. Rather, it comes as an additional coverage or a rider in a regular health insurance plan. Further, it is greatly subjected to limited conditions.
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Many people believe that their health insurance comes with a maternity cover by default. This is a completely wrong notion. Most of the health insurance plans treat pre and postnatal expenses as exclusion. This becomes a matter of concern as childbirth has become quite a costly affair at present. Hence, ideally, you should buy a health insurance that comes with a substantial maternity coverage. Here are a few points you should look out for, in a maternity cover.
Ideally, maternity insurance should cover all expenses right from the moment the would-be parents get the good news to post-birth care and vaccination. However, down to the real world, this is not the case; most of the maternity coverage plan covers only the pre-natal and post-natal expenses. A few insurers have gone a step further and tried to add on some other expenses as well such as delivery expenses, complications arising thereof, Caesarean delivery, child vaccinations, newborn care, etc.
But a comprehensive coverage should also make up for the expenses involved in outpatient services, ultrasound, regular check-ups, medicines, termination of pregnancy, consultation, preventive and wellness services.
Many people make the grave mistake of waiting till pregnancy before they get maternity coverage. It becomes very hard to get even plain health insurance if you are already pregnant, let alone getting health insurance with maternity coverage. The right way is to act proactively and buy the coverage at least 2-3 years before you plan to get pregnant.
In the normal course of health plans (with maternity coverage), pregnancy-related expenses start to get covered only after a waiting period that could vary from 2 to 6 years. On that particular aspect, group health plans provided by the employer are a notch better as they have a relatively shorter waiting period (usually 9 months).
Alright, now you have insurance for maternity coverage that should finish your business. Right? Well, not yet. One more thing to take care of is to check the sub-limits on the coverage you have. For say, the sum insured on your health plan is Rs 2 Lakh, the sub-limit for the maternity coverage in this plan should be around Rs 15,000 to 20,000. If you feel this sum will not be enough for you, you should probably look out for a health plan that offers higher sub-limits on the maternity coverage.
Being a mother is the biggest joy for a woman. And for to-be-pops, the number one concern is to make sure their wife and the newborn gets the best medical facility. Getting maternity coverage makes sure, high medical bills don't ruin the most joyous moments of your life. It is wise to be prepared beforehand, at least in financial terms, to face any complications arising during pregnancy.
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