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Is Medical Test needed before Purchasing Cancer Health Insurance Policy?

Health is, perhaps, one of the most important aspects of a person’s life, and thus one must take steps towards protecting the same. With an evolution in the lifestyle of people, one cannot overlook the health factor. To protect the same, the introduction of insurance had been done to the public. Health insurance protects an individual by providing them the necessary financial support a person requires while dealing with various health hazards. There has been a rapid rise in the costs of medical treatments and their affordability is decreasing day by day, thus in such a situation, health insurance plays a dominant role. The number of diseases existing in the world in comparison to the cures available is an irrational ratio thereby, pointing towards the concept of the insurance requirement.

What is Cancer?

Cells are the basic units that build up a body. The cells grow and divide in a particular pattern and as per the pattern that the body requires. At some point, few cells get old and damaged, later on, they are replaced by new ones. It is a basic function of the body. Although in some cases, if the genetic changes interfere in this process it leads to the building up of abnormal cells. The abnormal cells begin dividing uncontrollably thereby, causing a tumour in the person’s body. 

The tumour can be a major reason for causing cancer but, in some cases, the situation of the tumour does not turn out to be dreadful. The uncontrollable division of the abnormal cells can spread to the surrounding tissues. The division of the extra cells without stopping can also cause a tumour. Cancer or abnormal cells are usually removed from the body as they are capable of attacking the organs, tissues, immune system, and more. Although in some cases, these cells can hide from the immune system and continue to destroy cells. That is when cancer becomes a problem.

Cancer Health Insurance Policy

Cancer is a type of health insurance introduced in the market place with the motive of covering various risks associated with the threatening disease of cancer. The policy helps mitigate the related expenses. Helps in the reduction of stress caused by the medical condition. A cancer health insurance plan works for the benefit of the policy purchaser as just wishing to not suffer from such a disease is not the solution. There has been an alarming rise in the number of cancer patients being recorded in India today, and one needs to protect themselves.

Cancer is a dangerous disease and to cure the condition hefty medical costs need to be paid. Therefore, if one does not have a policy to receive financial support from, it can push individuals and their family towards the phase of bankruptcy. That is because, the treatment expenses are very high thereby nearly unaffordable for most people. An individual suffering from the disease suffers physically as well as mentally but the disease has a close effect on the emotional and sentimental health of the person’s family, and in such a condition worrying about expenses causes trauma.

Reasons to buy cancer health insurance

  • Lump-sum Pay-out

The insurance company guarantees the policy purchaser that on the diagnosis of cancer, the insurer will be bound to pay the patient a lumpsum payment from the entire sum insured. The amount varies between 20-25%, and this can vary from one insurance company to another. Once the pay-out is exhausted, and the insured needs further, money for paying the tests and treatment costs, the insurance company is in constant contact, and will thereby, be providing the necessary money. Cancer insurance policies do not put forward the clause of sub-limits, and thus, this works to the benefit of the insured.

  • Hospitalization

 In health insurance policies, the insurer puts forward the clause of a minimum of 24 hours of hospitalization as mandatory to file a claim. However, under cancer insurance policy, no such clause has been introduced. It means that the policyholder does not need to get admitted to a hospital for 24 hours before filing a claim and the mere diagnosis of cancer is enough. The insurance company will pay the insured lump sum payment on diagnosis of the disease and further as and when required. The introduction of these features saves the insured troubles of going through the entire claim process of cashless or reimbursement mode. The policyholder can ask the insurance company to pay-out the entire sum assured on diagnosis of the disease.

  • Hefty expenses

Cancer treatment is a hefty expense and cannot be afforded by everyone. Hence, having a cancer insurance policy as a full-fledged back-up works in your best interest. If one does not have such a policy and gets diagnosed with the deadly disease then the patient will have to use all their savings and their family savings for treating themselves and it may lead to bankruptcy. The savings were kept aside for a purpose, and just using them all for treatment will cause a major dent in one’s financial status. Cancer insurance policy can enjoy tax benefits under section 80Dof the Income Tax Act, 1961.

  • Medical inflation

As there have been rapid developments in the field of science and technology, the costs for the treatment of various diseases have touched the sky thereby, making it nearly unaffordable. Cancer is a deadly disease and for treatment, the costs involved are very high thus making it challenging on the side of the patient. There are several costs involved in treating cancer, some of them are incurred for:

  • Clinical visits.
  • Lab tests.
  • In-patient hospitalization.
  • Drug charges.
  • Surgery.
  • Rehabilitation charges.
  • Day and home care procedures.
  • Help from specialized doctors.

 Receiving coverage for all these expenses and any additional ones and to reduce future risk, one should ideally purchase a cancer insurance plan.

  • Premium waiver

 As important as it is to have a cancer insurance plan it is also necessary for one to realize that the purchase of such a policy is not cheap. It means that many people subscribe to insurance plans using the premium payment mode as it helps one afford it and pay in easy instalments. 

In a cancer insurance policy, if the insured gets diagnosed with cancer while paying the premium then the insurance company waives off the premium to provide help to the individual and family at such a sensitive point. While purchasing such a policy keep in mind to notice and include this clause and also check for the waiting period.

  • Increase in sum assured

From the date of purchase until the date of diagnosis, the time passes by without making any claim, and in exchange for that, the insurance company introduces the factor of no-claim bonus. It means that according to the point of no-claim bonus for every year that passes by and no claim is made, the insurance company will grant an increase in the total sum insured by providing additional coverage. Every insurance company has an upper limit to the increase in sum assured, and one shall look-out for this factor while purchasing the policy. The NCB is given as an increase in the coverage instead of giving discount on the premium.

Are medical tests compulsory while purchasing a cancer insurance policy?

No, one does not need to undergo a pre-medical check-up while purchasing a cancer health insurance policy. As there are more than 100 cancers in the world, the introduction of cancer-specific insurance plans has also been made. It is been advised to people for having basic health insurance and buy a cancer insurance policy as a supplementary plan. Replacement of traditional insurance with cancer insurance policies does not make sense.

Under cancer insurance policies, the insurer guarantees to pay a lump sum amount on diagnosis of the disease and stays in contact with the policyholder if any further support is required. Although while purchasing such a plan one shall not be suffering from any disease related to cancer, although other unrelated diseases are allowed. Buying cancer insurance if you are already diagnosed with cancer is very difficult.

Even though pre-medical check-ups are not compulsory here, it is advised to undergo such a test to understand your medical condition and avoid any surprises later at the time of the claim. As you get to know your situation, it is easier for the insurance company to also estimate the risk associated and thereby will set up premiums accordingly. Although if you deny undergoing a medical test, the insurance company cannot measure the risk level they are covering, and thus to avoid losses may charge you higher premiums.

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Suggest some methods to prevent the occurrence of cancer.

Some of the methods to avoid suffering from cancer and lead a healthy lifestyle is by-
Food: A person shall always have healthy food that is green in colour. One shall avoid processed food as they contain chemicals thereby leading to medical hazards. Having fruits and vegetables that are fresh help. Have a healthy diet.

Physically active: It has been noticed that people are getting lethargic day by day and are not active. Some people are too busy to remove time from their busy schedules to work-out. But it is advised that a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise or being physically active is necessary. It also helps prevent obesity, diabetes, and blood pressure.

Smoking: A smoker has a high chance of suffering from cancer. 22% of cancer deaths are caused by smoking. Taking up such an addiction not only harms the smoker but also endangers people around as passive smoking is also dangerous. One should take a firm decision to quit smoking. Once you understand the ill-effects of smoking, you can find some harmless alternatives to substitute your craving for a smoke. Smoking may appear to help you relax but, the long-term damage that it causes is huge.

If I have health insurance covering cancer, why shall I buy cancer health insurance?

Most health insurance companies cover various critical illnesses under their policies. Cancer also receives coverage from the same but a health insurance company restricts themselves up to covering in-patient treatment. This means the remaining costs such as drug costs, surgery, rehabilitation costs need to be borne by the patient that makes it difficult. Having a cancer insurance plan acts supplementary and thus is necessary. Health insurance companies also introduce the clause of sub-limits which means, that every disease receives coverage only up to a particular limit, again causing a hole in one’s pocket.

Name some of the top cancer insurance plans in India.

The best cancer insurance plan can be chosen as per the requirements of an individual, as it varies according to one’s suitability. Some of the good cancer insurance policies that you can choose from are asunder:

Cancer Care Gold:
The policy is offered by Star’s Health Insurance. Some of the features are-
The policy offers lump-sum coverage.
No pre-medical check-ups are required.
The insurer extends the policy to grant coverage for accidents and other illnesses too.

Cancer Mediclaim Policy:
The policy is offered by the New India Assurance Company. Some of the features are-
Under this policy, a 5% cumulative bonus is offered for every year passing by, and no claim is filed.
Quarterly reimbursement is provided on diagnosis
Members above 18 years and below 70 years of age can subscribe to this plan.

iCan Cancer:
The policy is offered by Apollo Munich Health Insurance, now known as HDFC Ergo. Some of the features of the plan are-
Lifelong renewability is offered, even if claims are filed.
The policy covers the different stages of cancer.
Initial Waiting period of 4 months needs to be served, which is among the lowest.

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