The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the landscape of life and health insurance, with people considering health insurance more seriously and preferring term life insurance plans over others.
Amid growing human vulnerabilities in the face of COVID-19 and its subsequent lock-downs and life disruptions, more than 25 per cent people preferred an inclusive insurance solution for protection, hospitalization and critical illness, according to a survey by Bharti AXA.
However, 17 per cent of respondents wanted to keep life and health insurance separate. As many as 25 per cent of the people polled felt the significance of an overarching insurance plan with all coverages in the unprecedented times and thought it as the need of the hour to fight unpredicted situations in life, said the survey which attempted to comprehend sentiments of people during the coronavirus outbreak and three-month lock-down period.
Over 25 per cent people thought of getting life insurance, while an equal number wanted to assess their health insurance in the COVID-19-induced new world in view of the uncertainties arose out of rising medical cost and disrupting regular income.
As many as 30 per cent salaried customers were a lot more willing to consider additional insurance as against 18 per cent of self-employed, noted Bharti AXA proprietary survey with a sample size of more than 2,300 respondents.
Besides, it pointed out, more than 50 per cent of respondents were also fearful of the economic loss, especially for the economically weaker sections.
‘’COVID-19 has brought human vulnerabilities to the fore. Life insurance came top of the mind the challenging times, while comprehensive health cover and critical illness have aided recall. The demand for a comprehensive solution gained the most attention. There has been a notable shift in terms of awareness and benefits of an all-in-all insurance plan in the mindset of people during the COVID-19 lockdown period,’’ said the survey.
Locking into health insurance emerged as the preferred option for half of the respondents, the survey noted, indicating a new market for health insurance products with rate guarantee.
With respect to health insurance, as per the survey, 50.4 per cent of customers want to have access to health products where rates are locked in for the next 5-10 years. Notably, there has been an increase in health insurance premiums on a yearly basis.
“Short-term insurance appeared as a new option in the uncertain times like the coronavirus pandemic. Claims emerged as the ultimate moment of truth,’’ Bharti AXA Survey added.
The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the landscape of life and health insurance, with people considering health insurance more seriously and preferring term life insurance plans over others. Industry experts are of the view that the new consumer sentiments that have surfaced during the lockdown period will continue even in the post-COVID times as well.