Can a health insurance policy protect you from Coronavirus impact?

Updated: April 07, 2020 11:29 AM

It is not necessary that everyone can avoid contracting this disease. This is where a health insurance policy can help you even in the current times.

coronavirus health insurance,How health insurance can help you in fight against Coronavirus explained

To say that the current coronavirus pandemic has taken the world by surprise would be an understatement. On 1st January 2020, who would have thought that just within three months, the world would come to a grinding halt and would be facing a big crisis. While the virus itself has taken many lives and destabilised the world, its impact has been amplified by the lack of medical resources to deal with the contagion. This brings to focus the need for governments and for people to put healthcare at the forefront and take necessary measures to mitigate the impact of such events.

Health insurance – your rough weather friend

From an individual’s perspective, the best way that he can mitigate the impact of health related exigencies is by purchasing a health insurance policy. Health related issues can have varying impact on an individual. In addition to leaving the individual physically and mentally drained, paying for medical treatments, hospitalisation and medication can be a big drain on an individual and his family. This is where a health insurance policy can come to the rescue. A basic health insurance policy would usually cover the medical and hospitalisation expenses related to a particular disease. In addition, insurers also offer multiple riders to the basic policy that can cover additional expenses related to critical illnesses, income in case of steep medical expenditure etc. This can be invaluable in your time of need.

Can a health insurance policy protect me from coronavirus?

Coronavirus is a type of virus which causes an illness similar to a flu in human beings. It is named as such because of its shape which is round with crown-like protrusions around the circle. The symptoms of coronavirus are similar to that of any other flu and could range from cough, cold and fever to shortness of breath and respiratory challenges. Unfortunately, the disease currently has no vaccine or targeted medication. This makes the disease particularly dangerous. You should, therefore, take extreme precautionary measures to ensure that you and your family members are not exposed to the virus. Some of these measures include wearing a mask, washing your hands thoroughly and frequently using an alcohol based sanitiser.

Despite this, it is not necessary that everyone can avoid contracting this disease. This is where a health insurance policy can help you even in the current times.

According to experts, if a person with an existing health insurance policy contracts the disease then the cost associated with treating the disease will be included in the policy. However, if a person opts for a policy after contracting the disease, he or she might not be entitled to get coverage for the treatment. Having said that, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) has cleared the names of 29 insurers who will be allowed to sell an indemnity health insurance product which will specifically cover the hospitalisation costs for the treatment of Covid 19. The indemnity health insurance will provide a cover of INR 1 lakh and INR 5 lakh. The regulator also clarified that all current mediclaim policies in India will cover Covid 19 hospitalisation. This comes as a relief in addition to being stressed out about the disease people were also worried about the financial implications of the same amidst a slowing economic environment.

Life can be uncertain. Nobody can really say for sure what the future holds for us. This means that it is not always possible for us to predict what will happen to us next. However, what we can do is prepare for exigencies and adjust to the new normal. An integral part of this preparation is insurance. An insurance policy can cushion the blow from extreme events and become your friend in turbulent times. Consider buying a health insurance policy if you don’t already have one. Don’t panic and stay safe.

(By Dhirendra Mahyavanshi, Co-Founder, Turtlemint, An InsurTech Company)

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