The first case of this highly resilient Coronavirus was reported in Wuhan, China, and from there it has been continuing to affect lakhs of people around the globe. With the worsening situation, the outbreak was declared as a global pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO). And the increasing number of SARS CoV2 cases in India as well as at the global level, makes people wonder if their existing medical insurance policy covers COVID-19 related hospitalization medical expenses, and the resulting respiratory illnesses. Let’s check out the details below:
Does your Health Insurance Policy Covers Coronavirus Hospitalization Expenses?
Yes, your health insurance policy offers protection against Coronavirus. All the medical insurance policies cover hospitalization expenses related to illnesses and diseases unless it is a disease-specific plan.
Will Coronavirus be considered as a Pre-existing Illness?
It is another common doubt that concerns people if Coronavirus will be considered as a pre-existing illness as it takes a few days to show the symptoms. But health insurance companies do not have a reason to reject Coronavirus related claims in case it requires hospitalization.
The policy should be covering pre-hospitalization expenses, post-hospitalization expenses, ambulance charges, OPD expenses, etc. depending on your policy coverage limit and the plan that you have purchased.
Launching of COVID-19 Health Insurance Plans
All the Health Insurance Providers in India have launched Coronavirus-specific health plans or are offering coverage to the policyholders in the existing policy. Specifically designed health plans will provide quick protection to people with no health coverage against coronavirus by availing the right treatment, without any financial constraint.
The demand for Corona Kavach plan, indemnity based COVID health plan is also on a rise since the day of its launch in July 2020. As more and more people are now aware of medical insurance schemes, the demand for health insurance and COVID specific insurance products will continue to increase.
The policy covers the pre and post hospitalization expenses, Ayush treatment, home treatment, along with hospitalization expenses including the cost of oxygen cylinders, ICU expenses, ventilators, PPE kits, etc. Most importantly, the cost of co-morbid conditions triggered due to coronavirus, as the virus targets the lungs foremost, but it can also impact your liver, kidneys, and brains.
It’s included in the sum insured amount of Rs 5 Lakh. Individuals who are 18 years old and up to 65 years of age can get covered under this mediclaim policy. Moreover, it has been designed to offer coverage on a family floater basis as well. The idea is to ensure health cover to all at an affordable premium.
The policy does not provide No-claim-bonus as it is an indemnity based plan with tenure options of 3.5, 6.5 and 9.5 months.
Diagnostic tests are usually not covered under a medical insurance plan unless it a part of the in-patient hospitalization cost, or the policy includes outpatient treatment expenses. Now you can get yourself tested at private labs without the doctor’s prescription, and the cost of the test has now been reduced from Rs. 4500, and for basic screening is around Rs. 1500.
Quarantine expenses are excluded in basic health plans unless there is a hospitalization or the insured is quarantined in a government-approved center where the patient is undergoing treatment and is charged fees.
The cost of consumable items like masks, gloves, ventilators, oximeters, and other medical devices is usually not covered under a regular medical insurance policy unless it is specifically mentioned. However, COVID insurance plans like Corona Kavach health plan covers expenses incurred on all the consumable items during the treatment.
Several health insurance provi ders in India have ramped up telemedicine services, from examining customer applications to telephonic/video consultations with the doctor. As of October 01, 2020, telemedicine services will now be part of the medical insurance cover, as per the new health insurance rules that are implemented in India. The insured can now claim the cost of medicines before and after therapy, and the OPD patients can claim the full cost of teleconsultation.
After the lockdown when people are still following the social distancing protocols, this would ensure that people can function without visiting the doctor in person and waiting in the queue. In fact, the doctors would be able to establish communication with the patients over a call and suggest a treatment based on medical history, symptoms and this goes for both health and term insurance.
The move will ensure that people can stay at home during such times. And the Insurance Company can decline claims if customer disclosures are found incorrect.
Over to You
We know these are trying times, but if you take precautions, and maintain hygiene you can prevent the spread of Coronavirus. However, if you don’t have health insurance you can buy it now as well. And if you already have one you can check with your insurance provider for the coverage benefits and procedures.