The last two years have been dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic – we were forced to stay at home and protect ourselves from the virus. Of course, with time, vaccinations were introduced so that we could safeguard ourselves. But is the dreaded time over?
Not really! That's because every other day, we hear of a new virus lurking around. No wonder, there is so much anxiety today, because we just don't know what's going to happen next. Recently, the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared monkeypox a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). There's again a scare, but we need to be calm and ask the right questions. For instance, is monkeypox covered by your health insurance policy?
Before we get to this, let's first understand what monkeypox really is.
What is monkeypox?
This is a virus that we've been hearing about on news channels, social media platforms, and more. Also known as a viral zoonosis, it is an infectious disease that can be transmitted from one human to another, as well as from an animal to a human.
Some of the common symptoms of monkeypox include fever, rash after fever (could be in your genitals too), bumps on the skin, fatigue, muscle pain, chills, swelling of lymph nodes, and more.
Just like COVID-19, one needs to follow certain protocols from masking to social distancing, and sanitizing from time to time.
Does your health insurance policy cover monkeypox?
Now, here's a question that's quite pertinent. Since monkeypox is an infectious disease, your insurance provider is most likely going to cover it. However, you must make sure to check with your insurer, if monkeypox is a part of the list. You can also check several insurance policies to understand if monkeypox is being covered or not.
For instance, COVID-19 was not a part of the coverage earlier, but considering the severity of the condition, it has been added by most insurers.
What else must you know?
In most cases, an infectious disease is covered by your regular health insurance policy. That means any costs pertaining to hospitalisation or treatment should be taken care of, so you don't need to worry about anything.
What you need to ensure is that you have an active health insurance policy. In case you don't, do everything possible to get things in order for renewal, because a comprehensive policy is a necessity in today's day and age.
Some policies may have a waiting period, as they do with certain pre-existing conditions. Whatever may be your query, it is best to check with your insurance provider, so that you have no doubts in mind.
Last but not least, the scope of coverage can vary from one insurance provider to another. This means that a certain policy could offer coverage for hospitalisation, but not cover outpatient department expenses.
Does travel insurance include monkeypox?
The occurrence of monkeypox is not just in India, but all over the world. While we were on the subject of health insurance, it is also essential to understand if your travel insurance policy covers an infectious disease like monkeypox.
Here's the truth – several policies do not cover medical expenses, such as emergency hospitalization. For instance, if you are at a foreign location and contract monkeypox, your medical expenses will only be covered, if you include a cover in your travel policy for such exigencies.
Lastly, you may not get covered if you contract monkeypox after landing in India, which is your home country.
Zero in on the right insurer
While there are several insurers available at your fingertips, it is important to go for someone who covers the viruses that are taking over the world. Go for a digital-first insurance provider, so that you can enjoy a hassle-free experience. Furthermore, you must have an insurer that does not have too many sub-limits to provide coverage.
Last but not the least, check their claim settlement ratio and track record to know how credible they are.