People who are looking for health insurance for their senior citizen parents, or senior citizens who want to buy health insurance for themselves, should consider the following points which will help them to buy the right policy:

  • Age: Most of the health insurance companies offer policies for senior citizens, but they limit the entry age as 65. It means, once you cross this age, you are not eligible to buy the policy. So make sure you have the policy before this limit is over.
  • Renewal clause: Choose a plan that offers lifetime renewability option so that the coverage is available till late in the life.
  • Pre-existing ailments: If the senior citizen is suffering from pre-existing diseases, the insurer will cover the same after completion of one or two years. However, there are some insurers, which do not cover pre-existing diseases at all. Therefore, it is better to check the same before buying the policy.
  • Co-payment: It is the amount that has to be paid by the policyholder at the time of claim. In the case of senior citizen policies, the co-payment limit can go to 20%. Therefore, you should choose a policy that comes with low co-payment limit.

Case Study

Rahul was at home when he got the call from his friend Sharan who told him about his father’s coronary artery bypass surgery. He required Rs 50,000 for medicines and other expenses. Without a second thought, Rahul withdrew Rs 50,000 from his bank account and rushed to the hospital. While Rahul was sad after meeting Sharan at the hospital, his situation compelled him to think about his father who was 62 years old at that time. What would happen if, God forbid, his father got hospitalised due to some illness? How would he arrange money for his medical treatment? Rahul immediately called his other friend Deepak to know how he managed to pay the hospital bill of Rs 5 lakhs on his father’s hospitalisation last month.

Deepak told him that he paid hospital bills, thanks to the senior citizen health insurance policy which he bought three years ago for his father. The policy had a waiting period of two years for pre-existing ailments for heart ailments. When his father was hospitalised last month due to a heart issue, the policy covered all expenses as by that time the waiting period was already over. The policy comes with a lifetime renewability clause which means, his father will continue to enjoy the health coverage throughout his lifetime.

Inspired by Deepak’s smart move, Rahul also bought a senior citizen health insurance policy for his father. Thankfully, his father did not have any pre-existing ailment; and therefore, the insurer offered the policy with low co-payment clause.

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