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Health Insurance Assurance
Courtesy: Apollo Munich Health Insurance
Sangeeta could not fathom the reason for her deteriorating health. Ever since she had shifted to a new house after her husband's transfer, she started suffering severe headaches which degenerated into migraine.

It is truly said that health is wealth and based on this adage, health insurers have come to the rescue for all those who seek to have secured and cashless health care. The demand for financing one’s health care needs has become an integral trend that is soon picking up in developing countries.

The idea is to provide quality and timely health care to the upwardly moving middle class segment that is growing at an enormous rate in a country like India.

The healthcare industry’s customer base has increased tremendously, touching a value of $34 billion. According to a report by PriceWaterhouse Coopers, the growth of the healthcare sector is expected to increase to $40 billion by 2012. With the rise of multinationals tying up with the local banks, there has been a change in the offerings of the insurance companies.

Tie-ups have been made with the healthcare sector, lifestyle segment, financial sector and many others, to quench diversified needs. To a great extent, insurance in India has been prompted by product innovation, streamlining of sales and distribution channels, along with targeted advertising and marketing campaigns.

What is it that makes health insurance such an integral part of our lives?
Today, life is so uncertain and so are emergencies. Health insurance helps in getting timely medical care. This is just a small area where health insurance is helpful. It has a wider reach which helps in improving and attaining a healthy and trouble-free life. Many people believe that medical help is readily available, but it is not true. There are areas that do not provide as good an access as they provide to a person who is insured.

The increasing number of unknown diseases, high medical operating expenses, and depleting quality of services are some of the reasons that health coverage has become a necessity. A health cover insures a member against several illnesses and guarantees that the member stays financially secure, should he ever require emergency treatment. It thus eliminates all worries about treatment expenses and makes life even simpler by reducing the complexities of the process. Each cover has a health plan that provides for in-patient hospitalization expenses, diagnostic procedures, boarding and lodging, the intensive care unit, operation theatre, anesthesia, blood, oxygen, surgical appliances, cost of prosthetic and other devices or equipment, if implanted internally during a surgical procedure, medicines, drugs and consumables, nursing and medical practitioner charges as per the policy schedule.

For each plan there are variants according to which the members can pay their premiums. Generally, a health cover amount ranges from Rs. 2,00,000 to Rs. 10,00,000 according to the product variant. Health covers are also introduced with value added services such as free healthline, cashless hospitalization and online health risk assessment that can help secure a better future.

A healthline is an easy way of reaching to the service providers’ health experts to avail their primary consultation, health related to counseling, individual referrals, nutrition and diet. Health risk assessment is a tool which helps profile each member’s health status through Internet. On the basis of the information provided, members are offered personalized wellness recommendations on diet, lifestyle and a nutrition regimen.

Choosing a health cover requires a thorough analysis of one’s needs and a systematic planning of the finances, well before hand. Added to this, having a complete list of all the health insurers in the town and their packages assists in decision-making. Some insurers offer facilities such as covering pre-hospitalization expenses, post- hospitalization expenses, cumulative bonus, critical illness etc, therefore leaving an option with the target audience to choose the best in the industry and recover soon. Moreover, investing in a health care insurance plan also comes with certain tax benefits for the premium amount under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act.

Prevention is better than cure. A health insurance is an ideal mechanism for protecting an individual’s earnings by transferring the risk and providing better accessibility to preventive healthcare. Introducing new value added services and bringing more useful plan covers to suit the diverse needs is the motive of many players in the market today.
Courtesy: Apollo Munich Health Insurance

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