After spending their life fulfilling their parental responsibilities and meeting the needs of their children, our parents deserve to spend their later years relaxed and at peace.

The best security you can offer to them is by securing their medical and healthcare needs. Protect them with a robust health insurance policy. Several insurance companies offer specially designed health insurance for parents.

However, before you invest in a senior citizen health insurance plan, make sure it meets your parents’ needs and expectations.

If you are wondering how to choose the right health insurance for your parents, then this article is for you. Here’s all you need to know.

What is a senior citizen health insurance policy?

Many people think that they cannot buy a health insurance policy for their senior citizen parents. However, it is not true.

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has made it mandatory for the insurance sector to allow senior citizens to buy a health insurance policy up to the age of at least 65 years. In case an insurance company rejects your application for health insurance for your parents, there have to be valid reasons and the same has to be put in writing.

A senior citizen health insurance policy is tailor-made to cover the medical expenses of senior citizens. It offers comprehensive coverage against medical emergencies due to old age. This is over and above the general inclusions of a standard health insurance policy.

Factors to keep in mind before buying health insurance for parents

Choosing health insurance for parents will be easier if you consider the following points:

  • Coverage: Old age typically comes with reduced immunity and increased instances of needing medical care. Furthermore, lifestyle diseases become chronic implying frequent medical consultation. Make sure the coverage you choose is adequate for your parents. Check the inclusions and exclusions, and if there is any additional allowance for senior citizens.
  • Entry age: Mostly, for senior citizen health insurance plans, insurers offer coverage for the age range of 55-80 years. Some health insurance plans allow the entry age to be 60 years.
  • Pre-existing diseases: Your old parents may have some pre-existing medical conditions. Make sure that conditions are also covered in the health insurance policy.
  • Waiting period: Every health insurance plan comes with a waiting period. In senior citizen health insurance plans, waiting periods are considerably high, especially for pre-existing diseases. Research online and chose a plan with a lower waiting period.
  • Daycare expenses: Some treatments such as cataract surgery do not require hospitalisation. Also, for certain conditions, your parents may require frequent consultations and diagnostic tests without needing hospitalisation. However, the cumulative expenses for such tests and procedures can be high. Therefore, when choosing health insurance for parents, go for a plan that covers the daycare expenses as well.
  • Co-payment clause: Usually, senior citizen health insurance plans come with a co-payment clause. This means that a part of the bill, as specified in the policy document, has to be borne by the insured. Research online and compare policies to make sure that you get the best deal for your parents.
  • Alternative medical treatment: With the growing popularity of alternative medicare, get a health insurance policy that also covers treatments under AYUSH—Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy.
  • Wide hospital network: When you are buying health insurance for parents, your objective should be easy access to healthcare. Consequently, you should choose an insurance company that has a wide network of hospitals. A wide hospital network would ensure easy and prompt access to healthcare in case of an emergency.
  • Claim settlement process: The last thing you want your parents to go through while dealing with a medical crisis is a tedious and complicated claim settlement process. Make sure you buy your parents their health insurance policy from an insurance company that promises an easy and simple claim settlement process.

Give your parents the chance to enjoy their old age without worrying about healthcare expenses. While you cannot predict or prevent medical crises, you can surely keep your parents protected against these threats by ensuring access to the best healthcare facility without worrying about expenses.

Buy comprehensive senior citizen health insurance for your parents and let them enjoy their old age stress-free.