Critical Illness

Is Health Insurance Enough? What about Critical Illness Cover?

Is your Standard Health Insurance Enough?

The cost for critical illnesses, including cancer and heart diseases, is often very high and may be difficult for some to pay. That is if you do not have a critical illness cover, along with your health insurance. Typical health insurance policies can provide coverage close to Rs. 3 to 5 lakhs. However, treatment for critical, life threatening diseases can often surpass Rs. 6 lakhs, in which case a standard health insurance policy may not be enough. At such times, it is often helpful if you have additional riders, such as a critical illness cover, since it could not only assure you a lump sum, it would also allow your health policy to function as it is. Nearly 7 lakh Indians die every year due to critical diseases like cancer and 10 lakh are diagnosed every year with such ailments in India, says a December 2013 article in The Times of India. The article goes on to say that one in every 10 Indians runs the risk of getting cancer before the age of 75, while 7 in every 100 are at risk of dying from cancer before their 75th birthday. Several other such critical diseases kill thousands of Indians every year and treatment for them is only going to become more expensive in future.

Choosing the Right Critical Illness Cover

The benefit payable for critical illness is only granted when the person who is assured cover survives through a certain period of time after being diagnosed with a critical disease. In case of death during this time, no benefits are given. Hence, it is important to keep a few essential points in mind at the time of getting cover for such deadly diseases.

  • There are several companies that provide this benefit as an add-on to a health policy or may even sell it as a standalone benefit. Determine how you want the policy to be.

  • Make sure to read the complete policy to know what it covers and excludes. Read over a point again if you do not understand it.

  • Do not opt for the cheapest policy, since it will have very limited coverage most of the times.

  • Check whether premiums are guaranteed or reviewed periodically.

  • Check for the waiting period and go for the cover that has the least waiting period.

  • Make sure to honestly convey all existing illnesses, even though it could lead to higher premiums. Non disclosure of medical facts can render your policy void altogether.

The number of diseases covered in this policy may vary from provider to provider, hence it is a good idea to go through a few options before deciding to buy one.