In case of a critical illness such as cancer, kidney failure or a stroke, you would require to undergo prolonged treatment and hospitalization. Though having a health insurance plan would help, but it won't really be sufficient to make up for the loss or income or to treat the health condition in the long term. But having a critical illness insurance plan can supplement the coverage and provide you added protection. The objective of a critical illness insurance plan is to provide you a lump sum amount on detection of any major illness. One time pay-out is made to the insured after which the policy lapses.
Decide on the coverage you require: Before you start looking out to buy a critical illness cover, decide on the coverage you would require. Consider your loans and liabilities, household expenses that have to be covered by you. Calculate how much money you would require in case of loss of income due to hospitalization. Buy a plan that suits your requirement and budget and does not strain your finances.
Check the diseases covered under the plan: Check on the number and types of diseases covered under the plan. Few insurance companies provide coverage for 50 illnesses while few just cover 10 illnesses. Cancer, heart attack, stroke. etc. are few of the common diseases covered by almost all the critical illness insurance plans in India. Not just this, also consider the payout mode-while few companies disburse the sum assured on the basis of the stage or seriousness of the disease, few disburse it irrespective of the nature of the illness.
Check on the waiting and survival period: Waiting period is nothing but the number of days or years, you will have to wait to receive coverage for the illness. Whereas, survival period is the number of days/years you survive on detection of the illness. Always check on this as if you claim before the waiting period, the company will reject your claim. No benefit is given if the death occurs before the survival period.
Critical illness insurance is different from health insurance: Irrespective of the cost of hospitalization or medical expenses incurred, a critical illness insurance plan compensates you. The purpose of a critical illness insurance is to compensate for the loss of income and provide you financial assistance in case of medical requirement. The right thing to do is opt to purchase a critical illness cover along with health insurance. You can also enhance the coverage of your health insurance policy by opting for critical illness insurance rider.
Check on the claim settlement process: This is an important aspect to look out for as in the end you are buying the policy for the company to finance you in case of the illness. While few companies offer you cashless facility, few require you to go through a documentation process. Check on the list of hospitals covered and the claim settlement ratio of the insurer.
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