Matters of the heart are important, not just for a happy mind but for a healthy body too. Due to stress and a sedentary lifestyle more and more Indians are at the risk of heart diseases. In India, the date rate due to heart disease increased significantly by 34 per cent from 1990-2016 with death per one lakh population rising from 155.7 to 209.1. What is more, heart attacks are on the rise in 30-40 year-old, which is 8-10 years earlier than other ethnic groups.
Due to this, health insurers have come out with heart insurance, also commonly known as heart mediclaim or cardiac care insurance. Some insurers also offer a bundled critical illness cover which covers both heart diseases and cancer.
“The key difference between a comprehensive Health Insurance and a Heart Insurance is that while the former covers a wide array of medical treatments, the latter is a specialised product that only covers heart-related treatment,” said Anuj Gulati MD and CEO, Religare Health Insurance. Heart insurance also covers out-patient expenses and also come with a personal accident cover. They also come with an annual cardiac health checkup.
Do you need heart insurance if you already have general medical insurance? Gulati explained, “It is important to note that a disease-specific plan is recommended if a person already has a basic health insurance plan to cover a broader spectrum of ailments and is looking to cover critical health problems such as cancer and cardiac issues.”
This is because the cost of treatment for critical illnesses is usually high and they also involve a longer duration of treatment owing to multiple interventions and assessments. Disease-specific plans are usually less expensive since they cover risk related to only a particular type of illness and hence are highly affordable.
“There are two kinds of heart insurance available in the market. One that offers coverage to people already ailing from heart conditions or have undergone a heart procedure or intervention and gives them comprehensive coverage; and others that are meant for healthy individuals, people without pre-existing heart conditions,” he added.
Some policies do not have an initial waiting period. For some, the initial waiting period for a policy to kick in is 90 days for those who do not have pre-existing heart disease and 3-4 years for someone who has pre-existing heart disease.
Heart insurance policies cover a list of heart conditions and also provides for the loss of income. Some heart insurance policies provide a monthly income for a period of 5 years of a severe claim. The payout is made irrespective of the cost of treatment and you are covered on diagnosis of any of the listed conditions whether the diagnosis happens in the minor, moderate or major stage. The insurer will pay you a lump sum on the first diagnosis.
A cardiac insurance plan ensures that you have the best care for your heart in times of a medical need and do not have to eat up into your savings.