Health insurance policy for elder people
Health insurance has become a very important financial instrument, given the exorbitant costs healthcare and the unpredictability of it all. The real problem comes in when one needs health insurance for a longer period of life and at a later stage in life. This is perhaps the most important area of health insurance as it is required even more as a person ages.
Vivek wants health insurance for his mother who is 61 years old. His experience with the previous health insurance company has been terrible. Poor service and claims problems have left him disillusioned. So he is looking for another insurance company. The problem is whether a policy will be available for his mother at this age, or will he have to go back and be forced to continue with the insurance company that he is extremely dissatisfied with
With time, a health insurance policy premium becomes higher for the same amount of coverage. Thay is why it makes sense to take a policy at a younger age for the premium is far less. However, there are times when one is forced to look for health insurance at an old age and this is the time when you need reasonable options to make the best decision.
Recently, changes have been made in the health insurance guidelines regarding the health insurance coverage process for individuals. The main condition is the maximum age till which a person can get health insurance. In many cases, the insurance company would not give coverage to a person above a certain age as the claim probability became high. Also, the premium would become so high that it became unaffordable for the individual.
Now, health insurance companies have to provide cover till a person is 65 years of age. This is the age till which a person would be able to get health insurance coverage for himself/herself. This is a boon for those who want shift insurance companies, or for those who are not covered right now but would like to get covered. In many senses, this is like mobile number portability!! You are not stuck with the same operator if you are dissatisfied. This makes it easier for Vivek’s mother to move to a different insurance company, even though she is 61 years of age. Some companies might even allow you to enter at a higher age. But this still does not solve the problem of preexisting diseases as the new insurer will not cover the preexisting diseases which the previous insurer might have been forced to cover, as the policy might have started before the disease was detected.
Regarding exclusions and specific product features, they have to be spelt out unambiguously so that a person clearly knows what he is getting. Vivek’s mother will have the exact terms and conditions of the policy document. She will have more knowledge, and as they say, knowledge is power.
The other very important thing that has happened is that if insurance for a senior citizen is refused, the insurance company has to spell out in writing the reason for rejection. The conditions have to be reasonable and fair. Thus health insurance companies are under pressure to not summarily reject coverage at an old age, like they were doing earlier.
The premium also has to be reasonable and just, and has to and just and has to be shown upfront so that this does not becoame a roundabout way of denying the person the health insurance cover. Thus this ensures that the plan remains affordable.
All things being considered, the situation has become a bit better for older citizens as far as health insurance is considered. We have come a little distance in ensuring that older people are not denied healthcare due to the lack of medical insurance.But there is a long way to go.