With the cost of healthcare on a rise, buying a health insurance policy has almost become a necessity. Today's insurance buyer is confronted with a host of choices with several different types of health insurance plans. Here are some of the different health insurance types explained.
Individual health insurance policy- Provides financial assistance to an individual when faced with medical problems. Provides benefits such as cashless treatment or reimbursement post-treatment; covers pre- and post-hospitalization expenses, and allows for add-ons. The entire assured sum can be availed by one individual only.
Family health plan- An entire family is included under a single health cover. A fixed sum can be availed either by one or different members of the family during the duration of the policy.
Group health insurance- Group Insurance covers hospitalization charges as well as pre- and post-hospitalization costs for a defined group of people, such as the employees of an organization, professional association. Such plans cost less than individual insurance plans.
Senior-citizen health insurance- Offers protection from health issues during old age i.e. anyone above 60.
Surgery and critical illness plans- Usually bought as a standalone policy or an add-on for treatment of specific critical illnesses such as paralysis, stroke, kidney failure, heart attacks, etc. The benefit is paid lump-sum.
Maternity insurance- Usually provided as an add-on with the main health insurance policy, it covers both pre- and postnatal care, delivery (normal and cesarean), and vaccination of the newborn. The new-born baby is also covered till the validity of the policy.
Personal accident covers- These are fixed-benefit plans with a specific sum paid in event of accidents. Usually offered as riders, they cover hospitalization and other medical costs in event of an accident.
Hospital daily cash benefit plans- A benefit policy, it pays out a defined sum of money for each day of hospitalization irrespective of the cost actually incurred.
Preventive healthcare- As prevention is considered better than cure, preventive medicine is gaining momentum. Preventive healthcare plans cover regular check-ups, concessions for X-rays and other diagnostic tests, etc.
Unit-linked health plan (ULHP)- Recently introduced, ULHPs is a unique combination of insurance and investment. By investing a part of the premium, and using the rest to buy health cover, ULHPs do not just provide health protection, but also contribute to building a corpus that can be used to meet costs that are not covered by health insurance plans. The returns are determined by market conditions of the time.
Top-Up Insurance- Such plans work alongside regular health insurance policies, acting as a substitute to the regular plan after the limit of the sum assured has been exhausted. It helps in providing the insured a larger coverage at a much lower premium.
Now that you are aware of the different types of health insurance plans at your disposal, we hope that you will be able to make an informed choice and pick the policies that best suit your needs.