Buying a health insurance is undoubtedly a positive move towards financial planning. But it is often observed that your first health insurance policy ever bought may not be the right one. There are various reasons for this, like inadequate information, haste, last minute purchase and more. But this is when you end up contemplating on buying new health insurance plans.
For that reason, the regulator, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), has permitted the facility to change the insurance company using the portability feature. There are certain conditions where the policy can be changed up to 45 days prior to the renewal date. The new insurer then evaluates the application based on the claim history and then accepts or rejects the proposal. Here are some factors that you need to consider porting to a different insurance company.
Sum insured compared to its premium:
Comparison of the sum insured of the new policy is the first thing to look for. However, at the same time, keep in mind the premium levied for such coverage. At times, the cost of porting might nullify the benefits in changing the insurance company and hence should consider the premium vis-à-vis its coverage at the time of porting your insurance policy. You can make use of an insurance calculator to compare health insurance plans and then finalise your purchase.
Coverage of the policy:
Before going ahead with the porting process, you need to look for the coverage of the health insurance policy. This includes which ailments are included as part of the policy scope and which are excluded. Every insurance policy has a defined list of the coverage provided by it, and you need to check before making the switch. It is advisable you opt for a policy with fewer restrictions on coverage and a wider scope of ailments covered under it.
Claim settlement ratio:
Another important factor to consider is the claim settlement ratio of the insurance company. This ratio is that which indicates how many claims are settled by the insurer compared to the total claims received. The higher this ratio is, the higher are chances that your claim will be settled. Apart from this ratio, you must also verify whether the insurance company is registered with the regulator, IRDAI. It can be confirmed by checked the regulators website for list of authorised insurance companies.
Network hospital coverage:
Network hospitals are another factor to consider before porting your insurance coverage. These network hospitals are those medical facilities associated with the insurance company that provide hassle-free cashless settlement facility. This way you can enjoy a cashless health insurance policy. In addition to that, you need not worry about searching for the right hospital since many speciality facilities are already included in the list of network hospitals.
Top-up and other policy features:
Another feature to compare policies before switching is the top-up facility. This feature allows you to purchase additional coverage for your policy instead of buying a new plan every time you exhaust its coverage.
With the above pointers in mind, porting your policy can be a mindful and calculated decision. Insurance is the subject matter of solicitation. For more details on benefits, exclusions, limitations, terms and conditions, please read sales brochure/policy wording carefully before concluding a sale.