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How You Can Choose the Best Health Insurance Plans for Senior Citizens

With the spiraling medical and hospitalization expenses, buying a senior citizen health insurance policy is imperative for your elderly parents. Health is wealth and our entire life revolves around our health conditions. With old age, people become more vulnerable to health risks, thus it is imperative to have a good health insurance plan to help your parents through this phase.

Why Should You Purchase Health Insurance Policy for Your Parents?

  • Paying off medical bills can be strenuous for senior citizens, especially with the upswing in treatment costs for both minor and major illnesses.
  • There is an increase in life expectancy in the recent years, which indicates longer lives for your parents. This means there will be an increase in the incidences of medical emergencies and treatment costs during that lifespan, especially in the old age. Therefore, buying a policy will keep you financially secure.
  • Elderly parents are dependent mostly on their children for financial support unless, they have a good pension provision.  Not everyone gets pension, therefore, covering medical expenses with a health insurance plan would be a wise decision. 
  • If your parents get pension, it will lapse once they retire from their job.

Here is a quick rundown of things you should consider before buying a senior citizen health insurance policy for your dear parents:

  1. Age Limit - Some health insurance companies offer insurance plans for senior citizens who are of 80 years or above. But most of the insurers offer plans for people who are 65 years of age and older. So, you need to ensure that you buy a policy which offers a cover to your parents from their current age to the maximum number of years possible. And those, who are yet to buy a policy for their parents, aged more than 65 years, can still purchase it. Some plans have restricted entry and some plans offer open entry age, so it’s advisable to compare different plans and choose the one which fulfils your criteria. 

  2. Policy Renewal - Policy renewal is an important step, especially for senior citizens. You need to check, if the insurance plan which you have purchased for your parents, can be renewed till what age and time. Different policies have different age limits, so you need to pick the one as per your parent’s age and health conditions.

  3. Illnesses That Are Covered - People at an old age, mostly have some pre-existing illnesses. At the time of buying health insurance policy for your parents, check the number of illnesses that are given coverage under your plan. Make sure the health insurance you choose, offers coverage against a larger number of existing and other critical illnesses.  There is usually a time period after which these illnesses are given a cover, so stay informed about those terms and conditions also.

  4. Amount of Sum Assured - This is the total amount that you will get after you claim your mediclaim policy with your insurer. Your insurance company will reimburse your medical expenses up to the amount that is assured in your policy.  It depends on your budget, how much you want to get assured, the higher the amount, the more your parents would be reimbursed against the medical bills. Therefore, it is advisable that you get your parents an insurance policy offering the maximum cover from health risks and medical expenses.

  5. Network Hospitals - Every health insurance company has a broad network of hospitals registered under their network. You can check which ones are covered under your senior citizen health insurance plans. In case of medical emergencies, you can get your parents treated from any of these network hospitals. And everyone prefers to go to a hospital in their vicinity and, which offers specialized treatment.

  6. Premium Amount - Medical cover for senior citizens can be little expensive, as the diseases which are given a cover, can be of a serious and critical nature, sometimes involving specialized treatment and surgeries from the best doctors in the city. Do not risk your parents’ health by picking a policy with a lesser premium. Of course, this is subjective to your earning capacity and your parents’ health conditions. Choose the best one, to the best of your paying capacity. This would also depend on your parent’s age, type of illness and diseases covered. It’s always sensible to buy senior citizen policy instead of getting your parents covered under the family health insurance plan.

Some of the important features which you must consider in any health insurance policy for senior citizens -

  • Hospitalization charges, including ambulance, room and total medical expenses.
  • Cashless reimbursement of your bills.
  • The cost of day care expenses.
  • Treatment of pre-existing diseases should also be covered.
  • Medical screening should be optional.
  • Choose the policy with maximum cover and higher amount of sum assured under your policy.
  • Seamless and quick claim settlement procedure.

Pick the Best Health Insurance Policy in India for Your Parents from the below mentioned policies

1. HDFC Critical Illness Insurance

  • If diagnosed with serious and critical health issues, which need immediate treatment, your insurer would be paid out in a lump sum. It will be valid only against 18 critical illnesses which are included in the plan and 138 surgical procedures mentioned in the policy.
  • Critical illnesses like cancer, open heart surgeries, paralysis, kidney failure, organ transplant and other serious health conditions will be covered.
  • Comprehensive coverage plan which cover your expenses from surgery, critical illness treatment and hospitalization.
  • Flexibility of paying premium amount in one go or a lump sum amount or regular premium as per your suitability

2. Red Carpet Plan by Star Health

  • It is for people within 60 -75 years of age.
  • Get sum assured upto Rs. 10 lakhs.
  • Your parents’ pre-existing diseases will be covered from the second year.
  • There is a co-payment clause available.
  • Avail 10% discount on testing and screening, but for that you would need to submit some documents.
  • Medical consultation is covered under the plan from the listed hospitals only.
  • Easy lifetime policy renewal process.

3. Optima Senior by Apollo Munich

  • This policy covers both your parents under a single sum insured and there is discount of 5% on the insurance premium
  • 50% of medical expenses on medical screening and tests
  • Day care expenses are covered up to 140 days’ post or pre hospitalization
  • Easy policy renewal process
  • For every year which goes without claiming, you get a 5% of cumulative bonus
  • Post 3 years your parents’ pre-existing diseases are covered
  • Surgeries for cataract, hernia and joint replacement have a waiting period of 2 years

4. Heartbeat by Max Bupa

  • Coverage on yearly medical check-ups
  • No medical expense would be covered in the first 3 months, until it’s an accident or medical emergency
  • Coverage on all the day care treatment of your parents
  • On every renewal get a rise of 10% on sum assured

5. Bajaj Allianz Silver Insurance plan

  • If your parents are older than 56 years, then this policy is suitable for them. Avail a discount of 20% on co-payment as a first time buyer.
  • From 3rd year your parents’ pre-existing illnesses will be given a cover
  • Avail cashless claim
  • Renowned internationally
  • Customizable plans
  • Seamless claim procedure
  • You will get tax exemption under section 80D
  • If you don’t file a claim for 4 consecutive years, your parents can be reimbursed for doctor’s consultation, routine health checkups for diabetes, thyroid, cholesterol, ECG only at, at Bajaj Allianz Diagnostic centers.

6. Apollo Munich Easy Health Insurance Plan

  • The entry age is 65 years.
  • You can get a maximum sum insured of up to Rs. 2 lakhs.
  • No cover till 1 month, until it’s an accident or medical emergency.
  • Tax Exemption under Section 80D.
  • Under critical illnesses, you can get a claim of 50% or 100% of the basic sum assured (1-10lakh rupees).
  • Coverage from critical illnesses like heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, transplantation, heart surgery, and cancer.
  • There is a 3 year waiting period if you want to reimburse for your dental treatment.
  • Apollo Munich Easy Health Insurance policy also covers you when the insured person donates an organ.

In a Nutshell

If you see your parents grow old comfortably and want to safeguard them from every possible health risk, then you have all the tools you need above! Make it safe, easy and secure for your parents as well as yourself, by choosing from one of best health insurance policy in India, for senior citizens, as mentioned above. These insurances plans will help you ward of all the tensions associated with medical treatments and hospitalization expenses. There are a number of policies from different insurance companies for senior citizens. Simply pick the best one or you, to keep yourself and your parents protected from any unforeseen health hazards.