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Senior Citizen Health Plans or Regular Health Plans: Which one you choose?
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Senior Citizen Health Plans or Regular Health Plans: Which is best for Senior Citizens?

When Mr. Harshavardhan was 40, he had an impressive investment portfolio. He had purchased different types of insurance policies, including a life plan and a health plan with sufficient cover. Though his term insurance coverage was up to 60 years, his health insurance plan covered him until 50 years. Today, Mr. Harshavardhan is a 62-year-old retired grandfather who leads a wholesome and worry-free life. But because of the lethal COVID-19 pandemic over the past one and half years, Mr. Harshavardhan is worried. One of his nearest friends got admitted to a hospital because of the COVID-19 and spent a hefty amount of money for the treatment. Mr. Harshavardhan doesn’t want to become a financial burden to anyone and is now planning to purchase health insurance that covers him and his wife adequately. However, he is confused about whether he should purchase a senior citizen mediclaim policy or a regular health insurance plan.

If you are above 60 years (a senior person) and want to purchase the best health insurance plan for you or if you are planning to purchase a health plan for your ageing parents to safeguard their health, it is always recommended to buy a regular comprehensive health insurance plan rather than choosing health insurance for senior citizens above 60 years. Usually, mediclaim for senior citizens plans is recommended to those with pre-existing diseases or chronic illnesses. Senior citizen health insurance scheme plans are affordable and are available at lower prices than regular health insurance plans. Moreover, these senior citizen policy plans have their own confines like mandatory co-payment and many more.

Moreover, normal health insurance plans are flooded with a spectrum of features and benefits for everyone. The most important thing is there is no co-payment on the hospitalization bill. But, if you go for a senior citizen life insurance policy, you need to pay a certain mandatory amount (co-payment) from your pocket in the case of a hospitalization. But regular health plans don’t provide this type of clause. Suppose your purchased health insurance plan has a co-payment clause. In that case, you can migrate to another policy of a different insurer that offers adequate health coverage without any co-payment.

Second, with regular health insurance plans, there are several changes in the underwriting rules. The compulsory waiting period for chronic illnesses like diabetes, asthma, and hypertension in the regular health plans has been lessened strikingly. These days, the markets are crammed with various health insurance plans that have a waiting period as low as zero days to 30 days. The waiting period varies from policy to policy. The waiting period is longer if you purchase insurance for senior citizens in India. This is because different insurers have different clauses regarding pre-existing diseases for seniors. Some insurers allow coverage after 24 months; others may allow it the completion of 36 months. This means you need to wait for a longer time for PEDs if you purchase life insurance plans for senior citizens.

Third, the sum insured amount is high (Rs 10 lakh to Rs 1 crore) for regular health insurance plans. On the other hand, if you purchase term insurance plans for senior citizens, the sum insured varies between Rs 25 lakh and Rs 1 crore.

Mediclaim for senior citizens in India comes with sub-Limits on different diseases. A sub-limit means the maximum amount that you will receive from your insurer for a specific disease. These could include doctor’s fees, surgery expenses, medicine costs, room rent, etc. If you purchased the best mediclaim for senior citizens with coverage of Rs. 10 lakhs, then the sub-limit for your room rent will be only Rs.50,000. But if your room rent amount goes to Rs.60,000 for your hospitalization, then the mediclaim insurance for senior citizens will only provide you Rs.50,000, the remaining Rs.10,000 you need to pay from your pocket. This is a big problem with the medical insurance scheme for senior citizens. But with regular health insurance plans, you won’t face this kind of issue.

Suppose you are planning to purchase a term plan for senior citizens to safeguard your parents. In that case, the experts recommend covering them with a separate health insurance policy rather than your family floater plan. Doing this will get a plethora of advantages, and it will also not burn your pocket. Moreover, you can enjoy the tax benefits under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act by paying premiums of health insurance plans purchased for yourself and your parents.

Health insurance is a must for all citizens because any healthcare treatment can eat up your entire savings after retirement. Thus, it is imperative to have a suitable health insurance policy that will offer you adequate coverage during this delicate phase of your life. With sufficient health insurance coverage, you can enjoy your life wholeheartedly without any financial burden. Moreover, these days, many health insurance plans often permit you to go for routine medical check-ups so that you can monitor your health conditions comfortably.

Though many health insurance companies are still offering the best life insurance for seniors and other health insurance policies, many Indians are not covered adequately with health insurance policies. In addition, a plethora of statistics has revealed that in India, in every 33 seconds, one person dies of heart-related ailments, while pollution causes two deaths every one minute. With such alarming data, it has become mandatory to be covered under a comprehensive health insurance plan because an untoward incident can strike anyone.

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