The increasing health issues due to the current lifestyle and environmental condition have forced people to be more cautious towards health problems. While people are taking preventive measures to avoid any health issue still, everyone is prone to various infections and diseases. The high rate of inflation (almost 20%) in the health care sector is making hospitals and medication jump out of the list of affordability. In all such conditions, health insurance policies are acting as the source of relief for most of the people and providing security against health issues which is the main reason for growth and improvement of health insurance in India.
The scenario of the health insurance sector has changed a lot in recent years. There is growth in the health insurance sector in India, which is a result of steps taken by the government and awareness among people. For the financial year 2014-15, the value of health insurance premium was Rs.20,440 crore. There are more than 20 IRDAI certified insurance companies in India with different health insurance policies.
Choosing the best insurance company can be tricky because every health insurance company has different benefits and services to offer. There are some basic parameters based on which you can compare health insurance companies and choose the best one for you. We will try to cover those parameters through this article.
Following are the basic parameters on which you can filter your available options of health insurance companies: –
Claim settlement Ratio
The basic requirement of every insured person is the settlement of the claim. Even if you choose the best health insurance policy for you based on your requirements, it will be of no use if you are not able to settle the claim. To help people, compare health insurance companies on the basis of the claim settlement ratio, IRDAI issues claim settlement ratio of its certified insurance companies.
The claim settlement ratio is the ratio of claim settled by the company. For example, if a company has 95% claim settlement ratio then it means out of 100 claims, 95 claims have been settled. Higher the claim settlement ratio, higher will be the chances of your claim being settled. You can find the claim settlement ratio of different companies very easily on the internet. A Claim settlement ratio is a very important and basic tool to compare health insurance companies.
Claims Settlement Process
Always check the claim settlement process of different companies and filter your search on the basis of easy claim settlement process. You can find the claim settlement process of different companies on their website. A company with long, complex and difficult claim settlement process can become a cumbersome procedure to settle your claim when you need the most.It is important to check that the claims settlement process is in house or outsourced as the turn around time will vary to settle the claim will depend on this information as well.
Network of Hospitals
Every company has a different network of hospitals, and it is very much important to check the network of hospitals for different companies because an extensive network of hospital will allow you to avail cashless treatment in most of the cases. Arranging funds in the event of emergency become a burden, and cashless treatment through your policy acts as a savior in such cases.
The price charged by different health insurance companies for giving you their health insurance product varies widely from one company to another. There are different companies which sell the same insurance with similar benefits at different prices. So it becomes necessary to check the price charged in the form of premium by different health insurance companies.
A good service provided by the company can minimize your difficulties and queries. The service of a health insurance company is not only limited to the understanding and purchasing of the policy, but it continues until the end of your policy.
A health insurance company with a wide range of products will give you a pool of options to choose from and with the availability of different options, you will be able to filter best insurance plans. All the products of a health insurance company are not suitable for everyone. Different policies have different benefits and limitations which you may not need. So it is always better to go with a company which has a wide range of product portfolio to suit different needs of an individual, family, senior citizens, etc. with the customized products.
One of the most important tools available for a customer in this world of digitization is the availability of review and feedback for different products and companies which are available online. Same goes for health insurance companies. Review of different companies is easily available on blogs and websites, which can help to find the best health insurance plans and companies for you. The review is given by the customers and experts, which is unbiased and can act as the right tool to judge health insurance companies. There are many blogs of insurance experts who give their review about the different product, and there are also many websites on which reviews of different expert are published.
With the power to choose from different health insurance companies, comes the responsibility to choose the right one, but with the right tool of parameters and availability of online health insurance, you can easily choose the best health insurance company for you which will provide you all the benefits when required without any hassle.
Harjot Singh Narula, Founder & CEO, www.comparepolicy.com
(Harjot Narula is founder and CEO of comparepolicy.com, an IRDAI approved insurance web aggregator focussed on selling online insurance for companies like HDFC Life, Aegon Life, Max Life, Bajaj Allianz and others. Harjot has more than a decade of experience in software development and has also spent 5 years in US working for the mortgage and risk management industry.)