They gave their best to you when you were young, but what you can give them back when they are aged? This is a question which everybody asks while thinking about their parents. More than anything else, their requirement is health insurance. Yes, health insurance for parents should be a top priority, if they want to lead a dignified life.
Nikhil is a troubled man these days. His mother was hospitalized and was under treatment for the last 3 months. She is a diabetic and is having heart complaints also. Nikhil already spend 2 lakhs and may require another 3 lakhs for a surgery next month. There is no health insurance for her and Nikhil has to pay from his pocket.
Can we ignore health insurance for parents?
In India, the health care costs are increasing every day. New and new medical procedures are introduced every year. All these are creating trouble for senior citizens who are living with limited income. In the absence of health insurance, many parents are living a difficult life. They are either avoiding treatments or are forced to depend on their children for funds.
There are many companies offering health insurance to parents. But it is not easy to get a policy at that age. When you are young, all companies are ready to give you a policy, but at advanced age there are many restrictions. There is a saying – Insurance is a product which you cannot buy when you are in need, so buy it when you are in good health.
Health insurance for parents – restrictions in policy conditions
The health insurance policies offered to parents came with many restrictions. The most important restrictions are
- High premium: The premium rates for health insurance for parents are high. But the chances of hospitalization are also high at that age. Living without health insurance may put you in a situation where you spend your entire savings in hospital.
- Co-pay clause in health insurance for parents: In most senior citizens’ health insurance policy, part of the claim amount has to be contributed by them while the balance will be paid by the insurance company. This means the company will not settle the full claim. This is called co – payment. Co-payment of 10% to 50% is common in health insurance for parents.
- Limits in Insurance amount: Companies are very selective in offering health insurance for parents. The insurance amount is restricted to amounts like 1 lakh -3 lakhs. Few companies are offering cover upto 5 lakhs.
Health insurance for parents – options available
Insurance companies like New India and National Insurance are offering policies of lower sum assured. These policies are having low co-payment clause. If your parents are staying in a small town, you may opt for such policies because of the lower medical expenses in such areas. But in cities and metros, these cover will not be sufficient. Companies like Star Health Insurance, Bajaj Allianz, Apollo Munich and Max Bupa are also offering health insurance for parents. If you can manage the higher premium, it is worth taking those policies. But some policies have high co- pay clause and lengthy waiting period for pre existing diseases.
Get health insurance for parents through your corporate health policy
Another option to ensure health insurance for parents is to add them in your corporate mediclaim policy given by your employer. Most corporate health insurance schemes cover parents on liberal terms and conditions. Some schemes are fully sponsored by the employer while in some cases, you have to pay the premium. If your parents are not having any health insurance, it is better to add them in your corporate policy.
Popular health insurance for parents
Please see the details of popular policies offering health insurance for parents.
- Varistha mediclaim from National Insurance Company
Though the premium rate is one of the lowest in this category, the maximum cover is limited to 2 lakhs. You may click the link below for more details.
- Senior Citizen’s mediclaim policy from New India Assurance Company.
This policy is also good for parents, but the maximum sum assured is limited to 1.5 Lakhs. You may click the link below for more details.
- Red Carpet policy from Star Health Insurance Company.
This policy can be purchased by those in the age group 60-75. The main attraction of this policy is that you can buy it without undergoing any pre medical tests. There is a co-pay of 50% on all pre existing diseases and 30% in all other diseases. The policy allows sum assured upto 5 Lakhs. You may get more details from the below brochure.
- Silver Health policy from Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company
This policy offers insurance cover upto 5 Lakhs for those upto age 70. For details click on the link below.
Medical emergency fund for parents
Since there are lots of restrictions in health insurance for parents, it is better to create a medical emergency fund, if you have aged parents at home. This will come handy in situation where the health care expense is high and is not fully paid by the insurance company.
Not having health insurance for parents can put you in financial trouble like Nikhil. Also purchase a policy for you and family when you are healthy to ensure lifelong health insurance cover.