Good news for healthcare policy consumers who hesitated to buy healthcare policy due to the fact that most of the healthcare policies coveronly in-patient or hospitalisation accounts. With major healthcare expenditures relating to OPD ( out-patient departments), many earlier policies gave a drawback to patient visiting hospitals for routine checkups/procedures.
Recently, Cigna TTK has launched a new health insurance policy called ProHealth Accumulate, which includes a Personal Health Wallet. This policy allows policy holders to accumulate funds to pay for outpatient treatment, including dental, vision, consultation fees, medicines, etc. If you already have an insurance policy, the wallet can be used to pay for co-pay or deductibles, like a top-up plan.
With this policy, one can invest in a fixed deposit or a mutual fund, and since ProHealth Accumulate’s wallet can be used only for health-related expenses, it ensures that the money is not spent on other expenses. The policy hence allows a consumer to build a contingency fund for bad times.
The Pro health Accumulate provides following facilities different from the other health policies:
- The ProHealth Accumulate provides a base covers that offers coverage between Rs 5.5 lakh and Rs 25 lakh, which covers hospitalisation and day care procedures.
- The base cover has a cumulative bonus of minimum five per cent if you don’t claim.
- The ProHealth Accumulate also gives the consumer a personal health wallet benefit option, which offers amounts such as Rs 5,000, Rs 10,000, Rs 15,000 and Rs 20,000.
- The wallet is structured like a debit card.
Highlighting the benefits of the policy CEO and managing director, Cigna TTK told Business Standard, “Even if you don’t utilise any money from the wallet, you don’t lose it. You can carry it forward. It also earns the benefit of five per cent every year on the amount that is not utilised, while in base cover you get a bonus only if you don’t make a claim”.
“The option to accumulate is useful because as you grow older, your out-patient expenses will be higher,” said Patel.
If you want to port out of the plan, you can port only the base cover. But, you can use the money accumulated in the wallet for up to one year for any health-related expense.
Pro Health also comes with an option to accumulate reward points by working on wellness programmes. These points can be used to reduce the premium on your policy or add to the corpus in the wallet.
The savings benefit is a positive feature, if other benefits like No Claim Bonus (NCB), etc are the same, says Yashish Dahiya, CEO and co-founder, PolicyBazaar.com.
There are plans that offer NCB as high as 50 per cent in a year. “I would recommend customers who are looking to set up a contingency fund for healthcare expenses to go for their own overall financial contingency fund, and factor medical emergencies cost in them. This way, they will cover all the risks, have more control over the deposit including the interest the fund makes,’’ said Mahavir Chopra, director – health and life insurance for Coverfox, a health insurance consultancy portal.
“It is a good option for a young consumer who is cost-conscious. But, the No Claim Bonus in Cigna’s product is different from other comparable policies. A higher NCB is more beneficial as the higher sum assured will take care of big expenses. And one can save for other expenses,’’ he added.