Which are the Top 5 Best Health Insurance Plans in India 2019? How to shortlist and what the cares you have to take care before buying the plans? Let us do the review and comparison.
Along with Life Insurance (Term Life Insurance), Health Insurance is also a must product one must have. While in case of Life Insurance, you have to buy it only if you have financial dependents. , However, this is not the case with health insurance. All of us have to buy as we don’t know when we get hospitalized due to illness.
An exception to this is, if you created enough corpus for your hospitalization need, then you may not need to buy health insurance. But many of us simply ignore the hospitalization cost in our life. Even salaried not worry about buying separate health insurance (even though company providing).
Cost of hospitalization as per my understanding inching up at the rate of 10%. Hence, in many cases, it is impossible to fund the hospitalization expenses from our own savings. A week hospitalization in expensive cities like Bangalore may ruin your few years of savings. Hence, one must take it as a serious need and buy it.
Top 5 Best Health Insurance Plans in India 2019 – Checklist
Before jumping into shortlist your Top 5 Best Health Insurance Plans in India 2019, you must understand what are the points you have to consider.
# Sum Insured: When you look at the rate of inflation of hospitalization, you find that it is nearly around 8% to 10%. Hence, always try to go for a sufficient sum insured health insurance base plan. Consider the members you are including in the policy. Based on that you have to take a call on the sum insured you are opting.
# Incurred Claim Ratio: You have to check the incurred claim ratio of Health Insurance Companies. Incurred Claim Ratio or ICR is a ratio of the total value of claims paid or settled to the total premium collected in any given year. This can be calculated as Incurred Claim Ratio or ICR=(Total Value of Claims Paid/Total Premiums collected)*100.
For example, let us say Company ABC settled the total claim amount of Rs.90 Cr in the year 2015-16. In the same year, it collected Rs.100 Cr as a total premium. In this situation, the incurred ratio stands to be 90%.
This Incurred Claim Ratio is applicable only to non-life insurance companies. For life insurance companies, IRDA publishes Claim Settlement Ratio. But sadly many (even experts) complicate it.
If the incurred claim ratio of a company is more than 100%, then it indicates that for every Rs.100 they collecting as premium, they are paying more than Rs.100 as a claim for a year. In simple terms, your income is Rs.100 but your expenses are Rs.100 or more. So instead of profit, they are into loss.
If the incurred claim ratio of a company is less than 100%, then it indicates that for every Rs.100 they collecting as premium, they are paying less than Rs.100 as a claim for a year. Such companies are making a profit as your income is Rs.100 but expenses are less than Rs.100.
However, rejecting claims only on grounds to profit will not work out for any company. They have to look for reputation, future growth, and regular guidelines. Hence, simply for the sake of profit-making, they can’t deny claims.
In my view, going with companies of high ICR or low ICR is risky. Hence, always choose a company which is in between both these points.
Do remember that Claim Settlement Ratio or CSR applies to Life Insurance products and Incurred Claim Settlement Ratio applies to Health Insurance Products.
Let us now look at the latest Incurred Ratio of all Health Insurance Companies.
You noticed that I have marked in green wherever the companies incurred ratio is good and near to category averages.
# Buy early: Buying at earlier age is the best than postponing it. We don’t know the health issues. Hence, the insurer may reject your proposal. Hence, always buy immediately and never postpone.
# Understand the cover: Identify the features you want to cover. Covering all NOT POSSIBLE. Hence, try to identify the product which covers many illnesses.
#Individual or Family Floater: Decide whether you want to go for individual or family floater. It is always best to go for an individual if the age of any one member of the family is so high than the others. For example, in a family of 4 the oldest person’s age is 65 years and rest of other 3 members age is less than 50 years, then better to buy an individual plan for that 65 years old individual and rest 3 members can buy a family floater.
Because the premium is fixed based on the age of the oldest person also.
# Entry Age and renewable clause: Check the entry age and for how long one can renew it.
# Waiting period: Identify the company which covers existing diseases at early. Usually, all insurance companies have a waiting period of 3-4 years for existing diseases. However, if your concern is to cover the existing diseases, then give first priority to this point.
# Room Rent Capping: Check for room rent capping.
# Co-payment clause: Higher the co-payment means lower the premium for you. Co-payment means how much you also have to pay in a total bill. If the co-payment clause states 20% co-payment, then for all bills claimed, you have to 20% and the rest 80% will be payable by a health insurance company.
# Exclusions: Check for exclusions. If you feel the exclusions listed may be uncomfortable to you, then skip that product.
#Hospital Network: Check for hospital network availability in your city or town. The cashless hospital benefit is better than producing the bills and waiting for claim settlement.
# Policy Wordings: Read carefully the wordings of policy brochure. If you have doubts on any feature, then try to clarify it NOW itself.
# Common Features: Avoid all common features, which companies try to highlight.
# No Claim Bonus Offers: Check for No Claim Bonus company offers.
# Treatment wise limit: Check treatment wise limit if any.
# Premium: Check the premium rates. Especially check the rates for older age rates as few insurers jump the rate drastically for older age coverage.
# Super Top Up: Never rely on a base plan. Down the line, if your coverage is not sufficient, then go for Super Top Up Plans. They are cheap in nature compared base plans.
Top 5 Best Health Insurance Plans in India 2019
Now let us jump into selecting the Top 5 Best Health Insurance Plans in India 2019 among those so many Health Insurance providers.
Here, my concentration is mainly on Premium, Pre-Existing disease exclusion, the limit on room rent, wellness programme, restore benefits, claims settled and claim complaints.
Note:-Do remember that they are not on the order.
Disclaimer:- Health Insurance actually depends on your age, family size, your health status and the particular feature you are looking for. Hence, my choice is based on certain generic consideration. It is always best to cross-check the product brochure before you jump into buying.
Also, I am not claiming that these are the ONLY BEST in India. If certain features not suitable to you, then you can look for other products available in the market (but considering the above points which I have discussed).
Hope this article will help you in choosing the right health insurance for you or shortlisting the Top 5 Best Health Insurance Plans in India 2019.