Customers of insurance products are now increasingly taking to family floater plans with riders that pay for consumables and home quarantine, according to industry experts.
Many consumers are taking the effort to be more involved and educated about health insurance due to the situation created during the second wave of Covid infection. “There has always been this need to explain and educate different aspects of health insurance to people that could help them in different scenarios. However, now people are more aware of things and they know what they want. They have also started asking the right questions about different features and benefits associated with various life insurance plans. This proves there is a greater level of awareness and understanding among customers,” says Naval Goel, founder and CEO, PolicyX.com, an insurance web aggregator.
What Do Riders With Family Floater Plans Cover?
While comprehensive policies cover treatment of Covid infections, including Omicron, there was a need to reduce the out-of-pocket expenses of the policyholders with some additional services. Hence, the health insurance companies introduced riders that cover consumable items such as PPE kits, gloves, masks, and other items that are generally not covered by the health insurance plan.
“It was observed during the second wave that home quarantine or admission in makeshift hospitals came into the picture due to shortage of beds in hospitals. Thus, people are going for plans that cover home care treatments so that their health insurance can be used for (situations) other than inpatient hospitalisation,” says Goel.
Some health insurance companies are offering features such as coverage for consumables and home quarantine, either as an inbuilt feature or as an add-on rider. Tata AIG MediCare covers consumables as an inbuilt feature. Niva Bupa offers a Safeguard rider, which includes the cost of consumables such as PPE kit, gloves and more. Care Health Insurance offers Care Shield rider that covers gloves, masks, braces, belts, spirometer and other consumables in case of hospitalisation.
You cannot opt for these riders during renewal. For this, you would have to buy a new health insurance policy or change to another policy.
Pandemic Defines New Segments
The Covid pandemic has created a new demand in insurance. Earlier, consumable goods were not covered under health insurance but during the pandemic consumable goods became very important and were highly sought after. Moreover, consumable items often comprise as much as 30 per cent of the hospital bill, which can put quite a burden on the customers. “Therefore, the riders for consumable items were introduced. Likewise, home quarantine and makeshift hospitals are relatively new concepts designed to balance the pressure on the healthcare system during the pandemic where the same kind of treatment happens under the professional guidance of doctors and specialists,” adds Goel. Hence, the health insurance plans must also compensate for the expenses on treatment at such non-hospital locations just the way it is done for hospital-based treatment.
Things To Keep In Mind
It is essential to keep several factors in mind at the time of buying family floater plans. Primarily, the sum insured of the plan should be sufficient to take care of the needs of each family member, especially when a senior citizen person is a part of the family floater plan. “The family floater plan must be comprehensive enough to ensure that the health needs of each family member are covered according to different age groups. Along with that, look for lesser waiting period and lowest capping on different things such as room rent, OPD charges and co-payment,” adds Goel.
As the third wave of Covid spreads, it is important that people have comprehensive health cover they can rely on.