Covid-19 fear makes people rush for health insurance cover

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Updated: Jun 22, 2020 5:06 PM

Financial loss is a real issue in situations like the COVID-19 pandemic when one doesn’t know treatment costs and whether the government will pay or not.

Coronavirus Outbreak, Novel Coronavirus COVID-19, global health crisis, Covid-19 pendamic, health insurance, Max Bupa Health Insurance Covid-19 SurveyAbout 50 per cent of the current policyholders are aware of Coronavirus cover in their existing policy.

Financial loss is a real issue in situations like the COVID-19 pandemic when one doesn’t know treatment costs and whether the government will pay or not, feel 48 per cent of respondents – who intend to take a health insurance policy and are aware of such policies – in a survey conducted by Max Bupa Health Insurance. On the other hand, 41 per cent of health insurance policyholders feel that taking health insurance makes sense due to the same reasons.

Interestingly, the Max Bupa Health Insurance Covid-19 Survey finds that 70 per cent of the respondents, who intend to take a health insurance plan are aware of the fact that the Coronavirus cover is there in the intended health insurance policy, while about 50 per cent of the current policyholders are aware of the benefit in their existing policy.

This is despite the fact that 59 per cent of existing policyholders made an enquiry in early stages, i.e. first detection in the world or in India about the Covid-19 cover in their current policy, compared to 58 per cent intenders, who has recently evaluated the category and in light of current situation.

About 70 per cent of People from Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Chennai, Lucknow, Jaipur, Pune, Patna and Chandigarh, who participated through face-to-face and digital mode in the Max Bupa Health Insurance Covid-19 Survey, thinks that it’s important to be prepared via health insurance for unforeseen health-related situations like we are in today (i.e. due to Covid-19 pandemic).

Nearly 39 per cent of existing policyholders and 42 per cent of people intending to take a health insurance policy consider ‘uncertainty of treatment’ as the most concerning aspect of this pandemic.

Financial uncertainty also grips a higher number of people who have not taken health cover, but intend to do so (about 51 per cent), compared to 46 per cent of policyholders due to risk of being out of work in near future.

Anika Agarwal – Direct Digital Business & Marketing, Max Bupa Health Insurance Company Limited said, “The rising number of Covid-19 cases has increased in the demand and awareness of the health insurance sector. More and more people are now getting apprised of the benefits of a good Health Insurance plan and we have seen a spike in the number of Health Insurance inquiries from across the country. At Max Bupa, we have seen an outstanding uptake in the business with about 16 per cent growth in May. We expect the trend to continue in the coming quarters and Health Insurance penetration to increase further. The industry is turning digital to accommodate the changing mindsets of people by offering digital products, telemedicine, etc. which will give way to newer horizons in the future.”

She further said, “With the increasing no of cases in the country, the Health Insurance sector has received around 10,000 claims so far, of which Max Bupa has received about 500 claims, with average claim size of Rs 2 lakh. As a responsible health insurer, we have prioritised all such claims, and over 95 per cent of the Covid-related claims have been authorised within 30 minutes. In case of reimbursement, the claim process has been completely digitised, and we have been maintaining 100 per cent settlement of reimbursement claims within five days to help our customers in these testing times.”

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