What Are the Things to Check in Your Health Insurance Policy Document?
When you’ve finally gone through the process of choosing and buying your health insurance policy, especially for the very first time, you might be confused by all the legal language and insurance jargon in your policy documents.
But that’s no reason not to go through your policy, as it is important when it comes to understanding your coverage and raising a claim. But, don’t worry, we’re here to help you make sense of what you’re reading, and if you need further help you can also go through our insurance dictionary where you can learn more about all the terms used.
Things to Review in Your Health Insurance Document
1. Terms and Conditions of the Policy
Go through the policy wordings to see if there are any requirements or conditions for you to follow, for example, while making claims you make have to pay a certain co-payment amount, or a deductible out of pocket. Additionally, you may have to complete certain waiting periods to get coverage for some pre-existing diseases, or certain other conditions.
2. Coverage of the Policy
Remember to check what health conditions or treatments are covered by your health insurance policy. Look out for important coverages such as pre and post hospitalization related expenses, daily hospital cash, psychiatric benefit, annual health checkups, critical illness coverage, etc.
A list of all the add-ons you have purchased with the policy and their coverage would also be clearly stated.
3. Exclusions and Limits
Another very important thing to check in your policy is the exclusions, or those instances where you will not get coverage from your health insurance. In other words, this will tell you what you cannot make a claim for. For example, most health plans in India generally exclude coverage for hospitalization without a doctor’s recommendation, certain diagnostic expenses, or cosmetic or plastic surgery among others.
Additionally, it is also important to check the sub-limits applied to different parts of your policy, such as on hospital room rent, treatment of certain diseases, ambulance charges, and more.
4. Sum Insured
The policy should include the details of your sum insured amount, or the maximum amount that you will get in case you make a claim due to a medical emergency. Note that in the case of a family floater insurance, the sum insured amount mentioned will be used to cover the entire family during the policy period.
5. Claim Process
Check the particular claim procedures for your health insurance. Knowing the claim process, the documents required to file a claim, as well as time limits within which you can do so, is important. This is because you never know when there will be an emergency. Also, make a note of the cashless network hospitals that are offered by your insurer, as you can head there and avail yourself of medical services without paying out of pocket.
6. Personal Details
One of the first things to do when you get your policy is check your personal details. Ensure that your name, contact number, email id, and residential address are all mentioned correctly in the document. This way there will not be any confusion at the time of claims, and any messages sent to you will not be lost.
7. Insurer Details
You must also look for a section that details all the contact information of the insurer, including their phone numbers, addresses, and email ids. This is very important in case you need to get in touch with your insurer at the time of a claim, if you need help, or have further queries about your policy.
8. Nominee Name
In the case of certain health insurance policies, such as personal accident or a critical illness cover, you must ensure that you have included the correct nominee details. A nominee is a person chosen by you (the policy holder) who will get your sum insurance amount in case a covered illness condition proves fatal.
9. Insurance E-card
When you get a cashless health insurance policy, your insurer is required to issue you with an insurance card within 15 days of the policy being issued. This card will need to be shown at network hospitals to avail yourself of cashless hospitalization or treatment, and share the same with the Third Party Administrator (TPA).
10. Policy Duration
In the health insurance policy document, you will also find the start date and end date of the policy. It is important to know these dates, especially the expiry date so that you can be sure to renew the policy in a timely manner.
While some insurers might send reminders or a renewal notice, it is important not to rely on these in case it is missed once year. Thus, you can set up your own reminder system and set aside enough funds so that you can always pay your health insurance premium on time.
11. Policy Number
It is very important that you check your policy number, or the unique number that is associated with your particular insurance policy. Insurance companies use this number to store your policy details, and it is also used at the time of claims, support requests, and more. While you don’t need to memorize your policy number, just make sure it’s somewhere you can quickly access it when needed!
12. Tax Deduction
In your policy you will find the complete break-up of your premium amount, which is essential in calculating how much you can get as tax returns as per Section 80D of the Income Tax Act. In some cases, this amount will also be mentioned in the document itself.
When you get a new health insurance policy, it is important to read the document in detail and verify all the information mentioned in it. That way, if there are any errors, you can take immediate action! Additionally, it will also help you know exactly what is and is not covered by your policy, so you won’t have any surprises at the time of making a claim.