Buying a health insurance plan requires research. Everyone has different health needs and there is no one-size-fits-all health plan. Hence, understand your health needs before buying health insurance.
Some common mistakes we make when buying health insurance plans are:
1. Comparing Premium Rates instead of Health Insurance Plans :
While we all look for the cheapest premium available when buying insurance, it is important to remember that in a health insurance plan, a low premium means a lower coverage, which is almost equivalent to no coverage. It is important to read through various policies and measure the premium cost against benefits like cashless health insurance plans to ensure sufficient coverage in case of an emergency. The aim is to get maximum possible coverage at an affordable premium rate.
2. Thinking young people don’t need health insurance
Being young and healthy is a gift and we must use it wisely. It is wise to buy health insurance at a young age because :
- Modern lifestyle habits make young people susceptible to ailments later in life which may cause a medical emergency. A health insurance plan can protect against financial loss due to health reasons.
- Young and healthy people pay a lower premium on their health insurance since they are not ‘at risk’ of making a claim. They also enjoy benefits like cashless health insurance for regular check-ups and tests.
- You can get extensive coverage like critical illness care early on to cross the waiting period (2-4 years) and get coverage. This is especially beneficial to youngsters who have a family history of illnesses like diabetes or cancer.
3. Being secretive/ not revealing medical history
Many people choose not to reveal lifestyle details like smoking or drinking habits or pre-existing/hereditary issues such as blood pressure. This might be due to fear of rejection or to get a cheaper health insurance plan. However, their claims are bound to be rejected at the time of any emergency due to an unrevealed condition even if your medical issue is unrelated. Be honest with your insurance provider and you may get coverage despite these conditions.
4. Not reading the policy documents for exclusions and sub limits :
Sub limit is the maximum amount your insurer is willing to pay for a particular service/procedure. If your medical care crosses this amount, the difference has to be paid by you. Hence, it is imperative to be aware of all caps, sub-limits and exclusions in your health plan. Many people make the mistake of not going through the policy documents resulting in an ‘additional expenses’ shock in a medical need.
5. Buying a popular health plan instead of a personalized one
All of us have different health needs. So, while your neighbour might claim to have the ‘best’ health insurance plan, it might not be the right plan for you or your family. Many people tend to consult their acquaintances for suggestions instead of considering their own medical requirements. This may get them an insufficient (overinsured or underinsured) coverage and lead to financial distress in case of an emergency.
Your health requires care and doing your due diligence before buying health insurance ensures the right care for you and your loved ones.