Although health insurance plans have always been an integral part of robust financial planning, they gained immense importance after the COVID-19 outbreak. But rather than having a basic health insurance plan, people should choose a comprehensive health policy for expansive coverage.
While both a standard (also sometimes referred to as basic or regular) and comprehensive health insurance plan provides financial protection against medical emergencies, there are many areas where comprehensive health insurance policies have the edge over regular ones.
Before you decide to buy a medical policy, it is recommended to understand your requirement, do thorough research on the products available and their coverage then select one of the best health insurance plans. Finally, make sure you buy from a trusted insurance provider like Tata AIG and enjoy the benefits of a comprehensive policy.
What is the Definition of Comprehensive Health Insurance?
Comprehensive health cover refers to a medical insurance plan that offers broader coverage than a regular health plan. In simple terms, it is an all-inclusive plan which may include broader coverages regarding pre and post-hospitalisation expenses, daycare treatment, OPD treatment, ambulance cover and other alternative treatments. A comprehensive health insurance policy offers several benefits for the people covered by it.
What are the Benefits of Comprehensive Health Insurance?
Some of the benefits of investing in a prudent comprehensive health policy include:
- It offers extensive coverage: As mentioned earlier, this plan covers a wide range of medical expenses and conditions which can help you reduce out-of-pocket expenses during a medical emergency. In addition, some of these plans also come with higher sum insured options for more coverage.
- You enjoy a cumulative bonus feature: If you have a claim-free year, a cumulative bonus in a comprehensive health policy can be used to increase your sum assured by a certain percentage.
- You have a lifetime renewability option: As long as you pay your premiums and renew your policy before expiry, you continue to enjoy the benefits of comprehensive insurance plans, regardless of your age.
- It provides cashless treatments: These plans offer cashless claims wherein your insurer takes care of the medical bills directly with the network hospitals.
- It may even cover pre-existing diseases: Comprehensive plans from some insurers may also cover pre-existing diseases. However, cover for major pre-existing diseases usually has a certain waiting period.
- You can add riders: One of these plans’ attractive features is adding riders or add-ons to the coverage. These add-ons come at a cost and enhance the overall coverage of the plan.
- It offers tax benefits: Health insurance policies (including comprehensive plans) offer tax benefits on the premium amount under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act.
What Do Comprehensive Health Insurance Plans Cover?
A comprehensive health insurance plan offers extensive coverage, which includes:
- In-patient hospitalisation expenses: It covers medical expenses incurred if you are hospitalised for more than 24 hours. The coverage may include room rent, ICU, nursing charges etc.
- Pre and post-hospitalisation expenses: These cover medical expenses incurred before getting admitted and after getting discharged from the hospital. The coverage may include various diagnostic and investigative tests, follow-up tests, medication, etc.
- Daycare procedure expenses: It covers medical expenses incurred if you are hospitalised for less than 24 hours. The coverage may include dialysis, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, etc.
- Pre-existing diseases: It provides coverage for pre-existing medical conditions after a certain waiting period.
- Domiciliary hospitalisation expenses: These cover expenses where you require treatment or hospitalisation at home.
- Organ donation expenses: It may cover the costs incurred in the organ donation process.
- Ambulance charges: It covers the cost of emergency ambulance services.
- Health checkup charges: These include annual medical checkups for preventive healthcare measures.
- AYUSH benefit: many plans also cover medical treatment costs under Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, or Homeopathy (AYUSH).
- A few other coverages under the comprehensive plan may include:
- Maternity expenses
- Second opinion charges
- Hearing aid expenses
- Bariatric surgery
- Consumables benefit
- Global cover
What is the Difference Between a Comprehensive and Regular Health Plan?
Below are some of the parameters which clearly differentiate between a comprehensive and regular health plan.
|Parameter||Regular Health Plan||Comprehensive Health Insurance Plan|
|Basic financial protection in case of a medical emergency||Yes||Yes|
|Includes riders to enhance coverage||No||Yes|
|Cashless claim benefit||No||Yes|
|Offers tax benefits||Yes||Yes|
Health insurance is a must-have at any stage in your life, and the requirement for a health plan depends on various factors. There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all. However, the best way to protect yourself and your family during medical emergencies is by getting adequately insured. A comprehensive plan with extensive coverage and benefits fulfils this requirement.