Insurance Uncovered

Given that buying a health insurance policy involves a financial decision, here are some dos and don’ts for those shopping for a policy.

Dos

1. When you buy a health insurance policy, be aware of the restrictions on coverage

2. As a policyholder, pay special attention to terms and conditions in the policy such as the clause excluding pre-existing diseases, waiting period, restrictions or limits on various expenses relating to hospitalisation, co-payment, pre-conditions for renewal and upper limits for age at entry and for renewal

3. You should disclose details of all pre-existing health problems, including major ailments, conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes

4. The company may want medical test reports depending on age at entry; you should comply with all procedures and documentation requirements

5. You should check where and how the medical tests will be carried out and find out who should bear the cost for the tests

6. You will have to pay the premium only after the insurer accepts your proposal

7. Renew your policy meticulously for the rest of your life

8. In the case of overseas health policy, ensure that you are insured well ahead of your travel dates and you have time for medical tests, if required by the company

9. You should have your cover for the entire period of stay abroad, including all the countries you would be visiting

10. Be aware of what your policy covers and does not. These overseas health policies cover not only hospitalisation but could also cover travel-related risks such as loss of passport, loss of cash, loss of baggage and repatriation expenses

Don’ts

1. Make sure you don’t conceal facts. You could face a dispute at the time of a claim

2. Don’t allow a gap of even one day in your policy renewal or your cover may be insufficient or useless

Source: IRDAI

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