Does Your Health Insurance Cover COVID-19?

. 3 min read . Written by Vanshika Goenka
Does Your Health Insurance Cover COVID-19?

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Coronavirus has turned the world upside down. With cases on the rise every day, there is no doubt that this health scare has got everyone checking their health insurance policies. But just checking policies is not good enough. Through the course of this article, we’ll be taking you through all the things you should know about your policy to keep it COVID safe!

The expected cost of treatment for COVID-19 is estimated to be anywhere between 5-10 lakhs in a tier 1 city, at a private hospital depending on the severity of the patient’s condition. 

Given these high costs, it is essential to know how your current health insurance policy can come to your rescue. Here is everything you need to know if you already have a health insurance policy in place.

Does my policy cover COVID-19?

Yes. As per the directive of Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA), all health insurance policies cover the treatment of Covid-19.

The maximum amount covered will be as per the policy cover taken. All mentioned terms and conditions shall remain the same. Treatment cost, along with the pre and post-hospitalisation costs, will be covered as specified in your policy. 

Will my COVID testing be covered?

Health insurance companies will not cover diagnostic tests or OPD expenses.

To be eligible for the claim, one has to be hospitalised for at least 24 hours, having tested positive for COVID-19.

However, it is advisable to confirm this with your insurance company so that you aren’t caught by surprise when it comes to an emergency.

Is the quarantine cost covered?

Yes, quarantine costs are generally covered with specific terms and conditions such as undertaken at only prescribed centres, as per a doctor’s recommendation, no pre-existing disease, and few others.

Make sure to check with your service provider on the specifics. However, it is important to note that home quarantine costs are not covered in health insurance policies.

Now that we have covered all the important questions relating to your existing insurance policy, If you don’t have a policy and are now looking for a new one, here are a few things you must know:

  1. Your new health insurance policy will cover COVID-19 after the mentioned waiting period in the policy, i.e. a minimum of 30 days. The waiting period is the time duration specified by the insurance company, only after which the company accepts any insurance claims by the policyholder. The waiting period exists to ensure that the policyholder does not claim for pre-existing diseases.
  2. The new policy also provides cover only once the policyholder is sure of no pre-existing COVID infections. This may require them to ask for details regarding travel history, or any suspected COVID-19 related quarantine, and the like. So make sure that you have all these ready prior to your application.
  3. There have also been some COVID-19 specific insurance plans launched in the market. If you are specifically looking for one only for the pandemic, be sure to check those out as well.

COVID-specific plans are best seen as a supplement since they provide a lump sum amount (fixed-benefit) in case one is diagnosed with COVID-19. These plans have a shorter waiting period of 14-15 days. However, if the policyholder is diagnosed with the disease or infection within this waiting period, the policy will not cover it.

Bottom Line

Whether there is a pandemic or not, It is better to take a regular health insurance policy for your family and yourself, which provides complete coverage across all possible ailments and not just COVID-19.

This will ensure that even after such a pandemic has rolled over, you still have that umbrella protection against future uncertainties.

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