Counting On Your Employer to Insure You?

Health Insurance CoverMost employees are grossly under-insured. The problem stems from a sense of false adequacy because your employer provides health insurance cover under the company’s group plan. The truth however, is that, it is far from sufficient.

In India, the estimate of the number of employees who also opt for personal health insurance, would be less than 3 per cent overall, with a majority of them doing so to avail of the associated tax benefits.

Whether you are in a job or are an entrepreneur, there is an overall economic ecosystem within which you work. The economy in India is going through a tough phase with clear signals of a slowdown.

While the reasons, ramifications and results of this slowdown can be debated by experts, those in jobs have already started feeling the heat, regardless of the sector they belong to.

At the end of the day, the balance sheet is what concerns a company the most. So, losing a job during a slowdown is something that you can’t rule out. What do you do in such a situation?

A successful financial plan rests on successfully covering various risks. While life insurance is addressed by most people even at the expense of being under-insured, health insurance is mostly given a miss.

With the current modern lifestyle, susceptibility to health risks in general and some critical illnesses in particular have increased more than ever before.

Some of these risks can often bring in unforeseen hospitalisation, hence causing a financial burden on the individual and his/her family.

With escalating medical costs, charges like surgeon’s fees, diagnostic tests etc may turn out to be very expensive.

It is then that the importance of health insurance comes into the picture. Health insurance provides the ability to afford better healthcare facilities for the family.

The employers typically buy indemnity-based products. This means that the policy pays only for the expenses incurred. But the health contingency is not limited to meeting the hospitalisation expenses alone.

They can also lead to temporary or total loss of employment and loss of leaves. In addition, there are hospitalisation-associated expenses which are not covered by standard health policies.

There’re several options available in the market these days, wherein the health policies offer several benefits which include cashless hospitalisation, critical illness cover, special covers for senior citizens, disability benefits etc.

It is advisable to buy a health insurance policy early in life. This will ensure that on continuous renewals, the policy-holder is protected for any illness that he or she might develop in later stages.

Buying a health insurance policy at a later stage, when the individual already has a pre-existing condition could lead to exclusion of that existing health condition from the coverage, for up to four years.

In these times of slowdown, companies are resorting to various cost-cutting measures like putting caps on various facilities under a company-provided health cover.

Don’t be surprised if at the time of need, you come to know that there are several limitations related to sum insured, family definitions (cover restricted to a limited number of family members), co-payment clauses, compulsory deductibles, room rent and ICU limits.

So don’t wait, buy an adequate health cover for yourself and your family today itself.

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