Buying Maternity Insurance in India – Things You should Know

  • February 4, 2018

Raising a child is not easy in a country like India especially with respect to initial pregnancy and labor expenses. If you are pregnant, it is important to set aside some amount of money for the birth of baby. Of course, maternity insurance is available these days (thank God!) but you cannot claim for the benefits until after 2-6 years of purchasing policy.

Here are top 5 things you must know about maternity benefit cover in India:

What’s Covered in the plan?

Do you know what is covered under maternity benefit in India? Definition for Maternity expense is an integral part of Circular on Standardised Definitions of the IRDAI issued in the year 2013. Hence, all insurance companies must follow this uniform characterization. It fundamentally includes all kinds of hospitalization perceptible to child birth pregnancy, medical termination of pregnancy, all pre/post-natal expenses.

Maternity expense includes the following listed expenditures:

1. Hospitalization Related to Maternity

– All pre-hospitalization expenses are covered up to 30 days prior to delivery. It will also cover post-hospitalization expenses up to 60 days.

2. Delivery including Pre and Post-Natal Expenses

– Maternity insurance in India covers expenditure
associated with caesarian and normal delivery. It will also cover post-delivery complications for mothe

3. Hospitalization Expenses

– It covers room charges, charges for nurse and surgeon, consultation charges for anesthetist, medical practitioner fees, and emergency ambulance charges.

4. New Born Baby Cover (Day 1-90)

– Cover is extended to infants when they are diagnosed with a congenital disorder or some critical illness.

The Waiting Period

A waiting period of anywhere between 2 to 4 years is restricted by insurance company before one is eligible to claim a maternity claim. Some policies may extend this period up to 6 years. The regulations usually vary with insurers. Hence, it is important to purchase maternity cover as early as you can even if you have no plans absolutely of having a baby sooner. As an exception, Religare Health Insurance Company will not restrict you with such long waiting periods. It offers a specialized maternity product JOY. Under this plan, the waiting period is only 9 months.

Exclusions

Listed below are exclusions applicable to the maternity policy benefit:

– Benefit limit for maternity and new born baby related claim is usually capped between INR 15,000-30,000 for normal deliveries. For caesarian births, it is between INR 25,000 an INR 50,000.

– Age of insured for claiming maternity benefit cover is capped at 45 years.

– The plan will cover termination of pregnancy within 12 weeks from the date of conception.

– A maternity insurance plan will not cover medical expenses on ectopic pregnancy. (Speak to your insurance provider as soon as possible to know more about this clause).

The Premium Charged

High premium is a major downside to these policies. One of the major reasons premiums are higher as compare to regular health insurance policy is that there’s possibility you may not need the cover. The premium rules vary from one insurance company to the other. Hence, it really helps to do a cost-benefit analysis of all plans prior to picking one you wish to. You may get quotes online for maternity policies offered by different companies. These quotes can be compared for benefits offered under plan, exclusions, and premium offered. Since the quotes are available for free, you can benefit from deciding on the best plan without having to pay for any expert consultation charges.

Some Tips on Buying Maternity Policy

– Health insurance and maternity insurance are two different things. Hence, it is not wise to make maternity plan the solitary criteria when buying a health insurance plan.

– If you have an employer provided plan that covers maternity expenses then claim from that policy only. Touching your own policy will eat up your no-claim bonus.

– It is possible to use individual health plan to pay up bills when the cost incurred on maternity care exceeds cover offered by employer’s policy.

– The insurer will not cover if you buy a policy when already pregnant. To be sure about all exclusions, you must go through the plans and rules associated to it.

Summing Up

Maternity expenses in India have experienced a steep rise in the past few years. This trend has forced many couples to hunt for options to conveniently fund the expense. Insurance companies realize this and made an attempt to highlight the ‘maternity’ benefit feature in their health insurance plans. It is quite beneficial to invest in a maternity policy. However, it is important to gain a detailed understanding prior to making an investment. So understand everything from exclusions to cover, special benefits, perks and pricing, make sure you have detailed knowledge of the policy you plan to buy. It also helps to have a separate medical fund to meet the prerequisites.

Tag

Comments

Leave A comment