Today health insurance has become almost a necessity due to increased vulnerability to contract diseases even in young age and rising medical inflation. Health insurance policy ensures that you can avail best treatment available to cure ailments. Medical emergencies can arrive at anytime therefore it is important to be prepared for them in advance so that they don't disturb you financially.

Types of Health Insurance


Mediclaim or health insurance policy is a basic health cover. It is an indemnity policy. It will offer coverage against expenses incurred during pre and post hospitalization, inpatient treatment, day-care procedures, emergency ambulance etc. Mediclaim insurance is valid for a year and needs to be renewed annually. You can either buy an individual health cover or a family floater health cover. An individual cover covers an individual while family floater policy will provide coverage to entire family.

Critical Illness Cover

A critical illness insurance policy will pay sum assured amount on the diagnosis of any critical illness listed in the policy as lump sum. Policyholder can use the amount as per his wish. You can use this lump sum amount for various purposes such as to pay for expensive treatments or recuperation aids, make up for loss of income or pay off for debts. A critical illness cover can be bought either as a standalone cover or rider. A critical illness rider can be attached with a life insurance or a health insurance policy.

Senior Citizen Health Plan

It is very important for all senior citizens to have health insurance. Buying a senior health insurance plan has a great significance and relevance. When people fall ill in old age, they face difficulty in seeking quality treatment due to the expensive treatment cost. In such a situation a health insurance cover will assist them. It will enable the policyholder to enjoy quality medication up to the sum insured without any monetary strain.With the health cover, a person can seek appropriate medical advice and the best medication.

Disease Specific Covers

If you are suffering from any serious diseases such as diabetes than it becomes very difficult to get an health insurance policies with this kind of facility. For such situation, insurers have come up with disease-specific covers plans or special feature in health insurance policy.

Worldwide Health Cover

Some health insurers have started offering worldwide health insurance plans. Such plans allow policyholders to avail medical treatment outside India as well. Such plans provides benefits such as pre-diagnosed planned hospitalisation, second opinion, outpatient treatment abroad, etc.

Top-Up Policy

Top up plan is an add-on health insurance plan. A top-up plan comes in a combination of sum insured and deductible. In case of a hospitalization or medical emergency, the top-up plan will kick-in whenever the claim amount is over and above the primary or base policy.

Personal Accident Cover

A personal accident policy covers the policyholders against death or disability due to an accident. Such policies cover different types of accidents such as road, rail accidents, accidents due to natural calamities and arising out of terrorism or terrorist acts. This insurance policy gives policyholders lump sum amount in case of an accident which has led to partial/permanent disability or fatality of the insured. This amount can be used for rehabilitation and supplementing insured's earning capacity.

Student Health Insurance

While going abroad for studies, whether your university makes it mandatory or not to have a health cover, you must carry a health insurance policy, as healthcare is expensive in developed countries. There are university that will give you option to buy health insurance provided by them or allow you to buy it from your local insurer in your country. In such situation, it is advisable that you buy it from an Indian insurer as university may not offer best deal. Health covers offered by universities are much more expensive than offered by domestic insurers.

Long Term Care (LTC)

Long Term Care (LTC) policies is meant to provide long term support including personal and custodian care. Long term care policies reimburse policyholders daily amount for services to assist them with activities of daily living such as bathing, eating, dressing, etc. Most people require long term care in their 70s or 80s. Hence, with life expectancy it has also become an important cover to have. Care services is the support provided to people as they lose the ability to care themselves due to chronic disease, disability or cognitive impairment.

Health Insurance Riders

Room Rent Waiver

Some health insurance policies have a cap on room rent. If you take a waiver for this, you can stay in a room of your choice. This is useful if you are living in a metro city, where hospital room rents are high.

Maternity Rider

Most health insurance policies that offer maternity cover have a waiting period of ,maximum four years. Taking this add-on cover can help you to reduce waiting period from four to two years.

Network Hospitals

Cashless facility is availed if you take treatment in any of the hospital given in the list by your insurer these are called network hospitals. So, make sure that your policy has more hospitals in your city.

No Claim Bonus

If you don't make claim during a year, then you will be provided (NCB) at the time of renewal. It could be either an increment in the sum assured or a discount in premium.

Pre-Existing Diseases

A pre-existing disease is a disease that you have at the time of buying a health insurance or has undergone a treatment. You need to disclose it while buying a policy.


You need to pay certain percentage or amount of the bill from your own pocket and rest is paid by your insurer. This feature gives you higher coverage at lower premium

Limits and Sub-Limits

Health insurance policies comes with some limits and sub-limits for specific treatment or diseases which covers in particular policy. So, before making a purchase check these thoroughly.

Free Look Period

Health insurance policies offers 15 days free look period. During this period if you find that policy is not suitable to you then you can return the policy and premium will be refunded.

Waiting Period

Waiting period is the specific period after which your insurer will start covering certain diseases. You can also avail tax benefit under section 80D for premium paid for health insurance.