The cost of healthcare has been rising drastically over the last decade. In fact, as of 2019, medical inflation in India was rising twice at the rate of overall inflation. With the ongoing pandemic, medical inflation has continued to thrive, with the costs of surgeries, medical treatments, medical equipment, and post-operative check-ups rising too. This rising healthcare cost combined with inflation can greatly affect your family’s finances of any medical emergencies. If your parents are aged, you could end up spending a significant amount of money on their treatment. This is why it has become a necessity to purchase the best medical insurance for parents.
While considering buying insurance for your parents, there are a few factors you must have an idea of:
1. Entry Age and Renewal Age
The best medical insurance for parents has a criterion for accepting applications, which is the entry age. The entry age guidelines vary depending on the insurance provider chosen, so you should compare numerous policies. Generally, the entry age for the best medical insurance for parents is 60 years.
At the same time, you also must examine the renewal criteria. Most health insurance policies set a maximum age limit for policy renewal, also known as the renewal age. Just like the entry age, this also depends on the insurance provider chosen. Recently, select medical insurance plans have begun offering lifetime renewability. Thus, when deciding which of the best medical insurance for parents to purchase, choose a plan that offers lifetime renewability.
2. Coverage for Pre-Existing Diseases
Unlike regular health insurance plans, the best medical insurance for parents includes coverage for pre-existing diseases. There is a condition for this inclusion, which is the waiting period. This refers to a pre-specified duration within which you cannot make any claims to your insurance provider. The waiting period in this scenario usually ranges between 2-4 years, varying from one insurance provider to another. First, you must check whether the plan includes coverage for pre-existing diseases. Then, try choosing an insurance plan that includes coverage for pre-existing diseases with a shortened waiting period.
3. Co-Payment Clause
There is a reason why you should read the fine print and the terms and conditions of any insurance policy that you plan to purchase. This is because insurers include critical clauses in these details. One of these clauses is the co-payment clause. As per this clause, you would have to pay a pre-set percentage of the entire medical expenses while the insurance provider covers the remaining amount. For example, if you purchase one of the best medical insurance for parents with a co-payment of 15%, you would have to pay 15% of the total expenses incurred if any of your parents are hospitalised. Therefore, look for a plan that has a low or zero co-payment clause because if the medical bills are high, it can financially burden you.
4. Coverage Extent
This is one of the most decisive aspects you must focus on when looking at the best medical insurance for parents. The plan that you select must offer a wide range of coverage for illnesses, diseases, ailments, accidents, and other medical expenses. Additionally, examine the information regarding critical and chronic illnesses. Some insurance providers include coverage for it with a waiting period, while others include it with a co-payment clause. Apart from this, you can also purchase a critical illness rider or add-on cover if you think it’s required for your parents.
5. Scrutinise the Claim Settlement Ratio
Another important aspect that you must look at when comparing the best medical insurance for parents is the claim settlement ratio. This describes the ratio of the number of claims settled against the total number of claims filed. You must check the historical claim settlement ratios of the different insurance providers. This would give you a fair idea of which insurance providers to shortlist and which ones to avoid.
Carefully Research and Buy the Best Medical Insurance for Parents
These are some of the key factors you must keep in mind while deciding which medical insurance plan to purchase for your parents. Also, discuss their insurance requirements to purchase a plan that is best suited to their needs. When you combine the factors to consider and their requirements, it will help you in finding the perfect plan for your parents.