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A Perfect Health Insurance Plan for Your Parents

Updated On Dec 04, 2020

With the increasing stress level in our lives and the deteriorating environmental conditions, health problems are a common issue with people of all age groups. Ailments like diabetes and hypertension are a common term in every household today. However, there are several other critical ailments that can come up any time without any prior notice and can create a situation of medical and financial emergency. In such a situation, the only savior is good health insurance.

With an increase in age, our parents are also being vulnerable to many health issues which especially creep in at old age. In order to ensure that our parents have a stress free retired life, it is inevitable for us to make sure that there is perfect health insurance for parents.

Why to purchase a health insurance plan for parents?

Let us find out the major reasons for which you should purchase a health insurance plan for your parents.

  • Today, the cost of medical facilities is increasing rapidly because of which it is inevitable for everyone to be prepared to meet unprecedented medical emergencies anytime. With an increase in the age of our parents, their medical needs will also increase and their income would also reduce. So, it is very much necessary to have arrangements made in advance to handle any such medical emergency.
  • Most of the health insurance policies provide the benefit of cashless hospitalization. This is quite a beneficial feature of a health insurance policy as the medical bill settlement would not be an issue for the policyholder or his family and would be done in between the Insurance provider and the hospital. This would definitely help you to focus on your parent’s health rather than worrying about the bills and expenses.
  • Moreover, there is coverage for pre-hospitalization and post-hospitalization expenses which can be quite beneficial at an increasing age.  Also, the premium paid for senior citizen health insurance qualifies for claiming deductions under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

Features you should look for in a Health Insurance policy for your parents

There are some basic features that each one of us should look for before purchasing health insurance for parents.

  • The most important feature to look for is lifelong renewability. All of us would want to cover our parents for the longest possible time. Moreover, as they start getting older the probability of increase in medical expenditure also increases. So, it is necessary that the health insurance plan which we are selecting for our parents should have lifelong renewability. 
  • There are many pre-existing diseases that are mostly not included in the coverage that is being provided by the health insurance providers. At an old age, it is quite obvious that all diseases cannot be covered in the health insurance policy; but we should keep a check on this and see that these pre-existing diseases should gradually be included in the coverage provided. The exclusion list of the insurance provider should decrease with time.
  • There are several critical illnesses which can be a cause of both physical and mental turmoil for you and your parents. So, a good health insurance policy for parents should provide coverage for these critical illnesses such as Cancer, Coronary Artery Surgery, etc. You should definitely include these critical illness top up in your health insurance plans for your parents.

Benefits to you by purchasing a health insurance plan for parents

Now, there are a number of benefits that you can also receive by purchasing a health insurance plan for your parents.

  • Medical Cover

The most important benefit which is to be obtained by you from your parent’s health insurance policy is the coverage received. The major expenses such as pre-hospitalization expenses, post-hospitalization expenses, ambulance charges, daycare expenses, etc. are covered by the health insurance policy and would be of great help to you. Moreover, by a good health insurance plan your parents can lead a financially independent life even after retirement. Even if there is any medical emergency in future, then your parents are not dependent financially on anyone neither you nor anyone else. This proves to be the greatest benefit of a good health insurance plan.

  • Pre-existing diseases 

Another benefit would be the coverage of pre-existing diseases. Pre-existing diseases such as diabetes, hypertension can become even worse with the growing age. So, coverage against these pre-existing diseases will be of great help to your aging parents. Also, as there is continuous inflation in the prices of medical care facilities; it is quite difficult to think about a situation of medical emergency after a time period of 5 years. With a health insurance policy, even after 5 years a critical medical emergency would not be difficult to handle.

  • Tax benefits

One of the major benefits which you can enjoy by giving a health insurance plan to parents is the tax benefits on the insurance policy. If you are including your parents in your health insurance plan, then you can claim a tax deduction of Rs.30, 000 for your parents. In addition to this, you will also be able to claim the tax deduction amount for yourself, your spouse and kids i.e. Rs. 25,000. So, you can avail a tax benefit of Rs.55, 000 due to senior citizen health insurance.

How to choose a perfect health insurance plan for your parents?

With so many health insurance policies available in the market today offered by top health insurance companies such as Star Health Red Carpet, Care Freedom, etc., there are a plethora of options available for you to choose from. However, to find out which one is the best, which policy suits up to your requirements, etc. there are some basic guidelines or principles which you can follow in order to select the best health insurance plan for your parents.

  • Firstly, it is always advisable that you start your health insurance policy for your parents early when your parents are young as with increasing age the premium for health insurance also keeps on increasing. Moreover, with an increased age the coverage to be provided for diseases also become quite restricted. 
  • You should always opt for health insurance for parents who provide the highest coverage and the least number of exclusions. It is better to opt for health insurance plans which have the highest sum insured i.e. ideally a health insurance plan of sum assured between Rs. 10 lakhs-Rs.20 lakhs depending upon the location in which your parents reside.
  • Another factor which you should keep in mind while selecting health insurance policy for your parents is the co-pay amount.  Co-pay amount is defined as the percentage of claimable medical bill which the policyholder should pay. Ideally, you should always avoid those health insurance plans which have a high co-pay amount. After the age of 65 years, it is mandatory for each policyholder to agree with the terms and conditions related to the co-pay amount. 
  • A major factor to consider while selecting health insurance plans for your parents is to consider the exclusions related to pre-existing diseases. It is quite important to check on the terms and conditions related to pre-existing diseases because many pre-existing diseases can be included in the health insurance plan only after a particular waiting period. But, in old age it might happen that your parents may need treatment for the pre-existing disease before the waiting period is completed. In such a scenario, the health insurance provider would not accept your claim and you might be in trouble due to this. So, it is quite essential to check on the terms and conditions related to pre-existing diseases before you purchase a particular health insurance plan.
  • Moreover, you should opt for purchasing a single health insurance plan for your aged parents rather than opting for a floater plan. This is because in a floater plan there is a single limit for many members and if one of the members claims a large amount then others might not be able to avail the benefits. When you are having aged parents, you cannot opt for this as it would be a risky option. Also, consider purchasing a health insurance plan for your parents which has a high claim settlement ratio.

Hence, there have been a lot of troubles which our parents have faced to give us the life we have today. Now, it’s our turn to make life somewhat comfortable and peaceful for them. A good health insurance policy with maximum coverage will definitely be one of our major steps towards providing our parents with a happy retired life.

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