Corona Virus is given the title ‘Novel’, to say it is first of its kind.
It means there is no cure to the COVID19, yet. It also means that your existing life insurance or your mediclaim policy document did not include the Corona Virus when you bought it.
“Will my life insurance policy cover death due to COVID19?”
“Will my health insurance policy cover the COVID19 treatment expenses?”
Or is there a risky blind spot that you should know? Is a Pandemic exclusion for insurance policies?
Find your answers here.
Table of contents:
- Will your life insurance cover death due to COVID-19?
- What if you buy a new life insurance policy now?
- Does your mediclaim policy cover coronavirus disease?
- How to claim health insurance for coronavirus?
- What do the insurers and experts have to say?
- What is covid-19 health insurance?
- Why you should buy a covid-19 insurance cover?
- Some important facts that you should know before buying a coronavirus health insurance policy
- Benefits of purchasing a coronavirus health insurance policy
- How to choose the covid-19 insurance plan?
- Final word
Will Your Life Insurance Cover Death due to COVID-19?
Yes, it sure does.
“Life insurance is like a parachute; if you don’t have it the first time you need it, there is no second chance.” – Luis A.Ortiz Haddock
If an individual having a life cover dies due to the COVID-19 illness, their nominee can claim the sum assured by providing proper documents.
In any case, death due to the COVID-19 is only considered as death due to illness. The policy providers will follow the same protocol as any other life insurance claim.
After the standard procedures, the claim will be processed and the sum assured will be paid to the nominee.
What if you buy a new life insurance policy now?
But, one has to keep in mind that the Corona Virus has caused a global health crisis. And with no cure or vaccine in hindsight, insurers may not accept new applications for now.
“A man who dies without adequate life insurance should have to come back and see the mess he created.” – Will Rogers
Check with your insurance provider before you apply for the policy purchase.
Does Your Mediclaim Policy Cover Corona Virus Disease?
IRDAI gives the approval nod.
The Insurance Regulatory on 04 March 2020 released a circular stating that “all claims reported under Corona Virus shall be handled” as per the norms prescribed. See the IRDAI circular image below.
You can read the official IRDAI circular here.
Now let’s see how to claim health insurance for corona.
How to claim health insurance for coronavirus?
There are two ways of filing a health insurance claim:
1. Cashless claim
2. Reimbursement claim
1. Cashless claim
In a cashless claim, the insured need not pay for the treatment taken at one of the network hospitals of the insurer. The insurer pays the hospital bills.
Make sure to check if your health insurance for coronavirus offers this cashless claim facility. You can find the list of network hospitals of your insurer in your policy or on the official website of your insurer.
2. Reimbursement claim
If you are hospitalized in a non-network hospital for treatment, then you will be covered under reimbursement claim. You are required to pay fully for all the hospital bills at the time of discharge. After your discharge, you need to file a reimbursement claim with your insurer.
For this, you will have to fill the reimbursement claim form and submit the required documents including the hospital bill receipts, test reports, and doctor’s prescription to the insurer within the specified time limit. The insurer will verify your claim and reimburse the amount to your bank account.
What do the insurers and experts have to say?
In the wake of the Corona Virus and the IRDAI’s circular, even insurers and industry experts and insiders came forward to make things clear.
Often insurance policies consider pandemics as exclusions as it will be too hard to settle too many claims at once. And the WHO declared COVID-19 a Pandemic as the virus spread all over the world.
Despite this, major insurers came forward and clarified that their policies, if active, will provide cover for the COVID-19 just like any other viral illness.
Despite this, IRDAI has also encouraged insurers to create “need-based health insurance coverage”. Ref: Official circular from IRDAI.
In that regard, insurance companies are launching Corona Virus COVID-19 specific health insurance plans.
However, if you buy a new health insurance policy, you will have to serve the mentioned waiting period. The waiting period is typically 30 days or as mentioned in the policy document.
Recommended Action: If your health insurance provider has not issued any statement regarding the COVID-19 coverage, call your health insurance provider and confirm.
If your existing health insurance plan does not provide the COVID-19 health cover, buy a new COVID-19 specific health insurance plan for now. It shouldn’t cost you much.
So let’s see what exactly is covid-19 health insurance.
What is Covid-19 health insurance?
It is a policy covering hospitalization and treatment costs of covid-19. There are three types of Covid-19 health insurance. They are Corona Rakshak cover, Corona Kavach policy, and Coronavirus group health insurance.
Corona Rakshak: It is a benefit-based plan that offers a fixed sum of money irrespective of the medical expenses.
Corona Kavach: It is an indemnity-type plan that indemnifies policyholders for the medical expenses incurred.
Coronavirus Group Health Insurance: If you are covered under a group health insurance policy, then check if it covers coronavirus treatment expenses. If your group health insurance policy is either Corona Rakshak or Corona Kavach, then you will be covered.
Now let’s see what is the difference between Corona Rakshak and Corona Kavach.
The difference between Corona Rakshak and Corona Kavach
These are the major differences between Corona Rakshak and Corona Kavach policy.
Corona Rakshak vs Corona Kavach, Which will suit your need?
Now let’s see which of these will suit your need.
Corona Rakshak pays you 100% of the sum assured if you are tested positive for COVID and if you are hospitalized for a minimum of 72 hours. It is meant to replace the income lost during the treatment and is apt for you if you are the sole breadwinner. Also if you already have health insurance that covers the room rent, then you may consider purchasing this policy.
If you don’t have health insurance or have a lower sum insured or with any room rent limits, you can buy a Corona Kavach policy as it takes care of your room rent and other hospitalization expenses. There won’t be any sub-limits on room rent. Hence, in this case, you can get a Corona Kavach policy.
Whichever policy you buy, note that the company will provide you with the benefits only if you are diagnosed with COVID-19. There is no coverage for pre-existing diseases and you won’t be reimbursed if you are tested positive during the waiting period. Both plans have a waiting period and treatment can be done only in India.
Now let us find why you should buy covid-19 insurance.
Why buy a covid-19 insurance cover?
This plan covers the risk to life arising due to the corona. It normally covers hospitalization expenses and home quarantine expenses related to corona. Some policies offer a death benefit. The inclusions and exclusions of the covid 19 plan may vary from one insurer to the other.
With an insurance plan, it will be easy to manage your finances, in case you are diagnosed with corona. In case of your demise, your family will receive the death benefit. This way your family can be financially secure.
Now let’s see the important facts you should know before buying a coronavirus health insurance policy.
Some important facts to know before buying a coronavirus health insurance policy
Sum insured: It is advised to go for a higher sum insured so that you are covered
appropriately for any circumstance.
Coverage: Carefully go through the coverage provided before you choose a plan. Most policies offer coverage for in-hospitalization expenses, post-hospitalization care, ICU charges, ambulance charges, etc.
Waiting period: While buying health insurance for coronavirus, it is important to check the waiting period. Almost all plans come with a waiting period of 30 days. During this period no claims filed by you will be covered. Thus check your waiting period before buying the policy.
Now let’s see the benefits of purchasing a coronavirus health insurance policy.
Benefits of purchasing a coronavirus health insurance policy
1. Financial help: With a coronavirus health insurance policy, depending on the policy, you will be covered for all your expenses once you are diagnosed with covid-19 or you will receive a pre-determined percentage of the total sum assured as soon as you are diagnosed with the disease.
2. Increased life protection: With some covid-19 insurance policies, you can get an
additional sum assured, on death due to covid-19. If the cover is under covid-19 insurance rider, the sum assured is in addition to the base policy sum assured.
3. Tax benefit: The benefit received from the covid-19 insurance cover is tax-exempt.
4. Short policy term: Most covid 19 plans are available for the short term.
5. One-time premium payment: Most policies are available online with a one-time premium payment.
6. Low entry age: You can buy these insurance plans if you are 18 yrs or more.
7. High maturity age: Most plans have a high maturity age. You could get the covid-19 insurance even up to the age of 66.
8. Protect from uncertainties: With so much uncertainty, you can be certain of one thing, that if you have insurance, it will protect you from uncertainties.
9. Peace of mind: Once you have covid-19 insurance, you can have some peace of mind, as you are covered.
Now let’s see how to choose a covid-19 insurance plan.
How to choose the covid-19 insurance plan?
Few things to consider:
1. Renowned insurer with high Claim Settlement Ratio
You can find the claim settlement ratios online. Claim settlement ratios indicate the number of claims settled. A high Claim settlement ratio over few years means you will receive the benefits easily from the insurance.
2. Do not delay buying the insurance
Buying covid-19 insurance will benefit you in the form of hospitalization cost coverage and death benefit. Hence do not delay buying the insurance, do it as soon as possible.
3. Adequate sum insured
Get an adequate sum insured, i.e. if you are living in metro cities, the cost of treatment would be high, so it is better to get a higher sum insured. If you are also insuring for your family, then again the sum insured should be higher.
4. Waiting period
Check for health insurance with a lower waiting period.
Be it any crisis, prevention is always better than cure.
Especially when there is no cure, prevention is the only way to go. At least until science finds a cure.
But if this global health crisis had shown you the importance of getting your life and health insured, take action now. Don’t you think having insurance will save you in the future?
Make the best out of your time staying home. Keep yourself and everyone safe.