Friday, June 21, 2013

Family Health Insurance

No matter how rich or poor you are, whether you stay in a city, a village or a tropical paradise, you eat continental food or Indian food, or you are the president of India or the Queen of England, you're just as human as the next person. Which means that you're subject to health problems like diabetes, tonsillitis, kidney stones and cancer, etc. And not just you, it's your entire family too. So if you are planning to get yourself some health insurance, you may as well look into this for your family. 

Family health insurance, also known as family medical claim in India, will help pay for or reimburse you and your family for any hospital expenses when more than a day and a night is spent at a hospital. This includes any fees for doctors, consultants, specialists, surgeons, the hospital room stay, nursing, medicines, tests, procedural fees, etc. For higher premiums you can get additional bonuses like a daily hospital allowance and the ambulance ride covered.

There are two kinds of family medical claim policies. The first one is an individual health policy. It is very simple since it insures each member of the family according to the sum assured amount. So if you get this for yourself, your husband and your child, and, for example, each of you has an individual sum assured limit of Rs 3 lakh, then each of you can recuperate that amount in the case of hospitalisation. The idea is that each one is insured individually within the family unit. 

Unfortunately in case you may build up medical expenses of Rs 4 lakh, you cannot ‘borrow' the coverage from the other family members and will have to shell out Rs 1 lakh over your individual Rs 3 lakh cover. The good thing is that this package still requires you to pay lower premiums than if you bought health insurance solo. You can insure extended family like your brother-in-law and grandmother too, and there are no age limits for any of the members.

The other kind of family medical claim is a floater policy. If we take the previous example, you would have to shed out extra as an individual, but with this policy any one or all individuals has a cover of upto Rs 9 lakh. It's preferable over the individual policy since its premiums are lower and there is more flexibility with the coverage. Unfortunately it is only available for immediate family like your spouse and children. This cannot be ex ended to your mother or sister. There is also an age limit that varies with various insurance companies on this kind of policy. Good care is your family and with your own health policy.

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