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What is Health Insurance?

Health Insurance, also known as Mediclaim in India, is a form of insurance which covers the expenses incurred on medical treatment and hospitalisation. It covers the policyholder against any financial constraints arising from medical emergencies. In case of sudden hospitalisation, illness or accident, health insurance takes care of the expenses on medicines, oxygen, ambulance, blood, hospital room, various medical tests and almost all other costs involved. By paying a small premium every year, you can ensure that any big medical expenses, if incurred, will not burn a hole in your pocket. The plan can be taken for an individual or for your family as a Family Floater Health Insurance Plan.

Major Benefits in a Health Insurance Policy

Cashless facility

Each health insurance company ties up with a large number of hospitals to provide cashless health insurance facility. If you are admitted to any of the network hospitals, you would not have to pay the expenses from your pocket. In case the hospital is not part of the network, you will have to pay the hospital and the insurance company will reimburse the costs to you later.

Pre-hospitalisation expenses

In case you have incurred treatment costs for the ailment for which you later get admitted to a hospital, the insurance company will bear those costs also. Usually the payout is for costs incurred between 30 to 60 days before hospitalisation.

Hospitalisation Expenses

Costs incurred if a policyholder is admitted to the hospital for more than 24 hours are covered by the health insurance plan.

Post-hospitalisation expenses

Even after you are discharged from the hospital, you will incur costs during the recovery period. Most mediclaim policies will cover the expenses incurred 60 to 90 days after hospitalisation.

Day Care Procedure Expenses

Due to advancement in technology some of the treatments no more require a 24 hours of hospitalisation. Your health insurance policy will cover the costs incurred for these treatments also.

Ambulance Charges

In most cases the ambulance charges are taken up by the policy and the policy holder usually doesn't have to bear the burden of the same.

Cover for Pre-existing Diseases

Health insurance policies have a facility of covering pre-existing diseases after 3 or 4 years of continuously renewing the policy, i.e. if someone has diabetes, then after completion of 3 or 4 years of continuous renewal with the same insurer (depending on the plan offered and his age), any hospitalisation due to diabetes will also be covered..

Tax Benefits

The premiums paid for a Health Insurance Policy are exempted for Under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act. Income tax benefit is provided to the customer for the premium amount till a maximum of Rs. 15,000 for regular and Rs. 20,000 for senior citizen respectively.

No-Claim Bonus

If there has been no claim in the previous year, a benefit is passed on to the policyholder, either by reducing the premium or by increasing the sum assured by a certain percentage of the existing premium.

Health Check-Up

Some health insurance policies have a facility of free health check-up for the well being of the individual if there is no claim made for certain number of years.

Organ Donor Expenses

The medical expenses incurred in harvesting the organ for a transplant is paid by the policy.

How to choose the best health insurance plan for you and your family?

The cheapest health insurance insurance plan might not be the best health insurance plan for you. You should compare the health insurance plans available in India before making the decision.

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