As your parents get older, good health becomes a major concern for them. Health Insurance Plans for Senior Citizens play an important role in protecting their retirement funds from being drained by the ever-rising costs of healthcare.

What is covered under a Health Insurance Plan for Senior Citizens?

Health Insurance Plans for Senior Citizens offer your parents the assurance that their major medical expenses will be well taken care of in case such a situation arises. The best Health Insurance Plans for Seniors offer them the option to renew the policy throughout life.

Besides having a good number of well-reputed hospitals in the cashless network, a Health Insurance Plan for Senior Citizens covers the following benefits:

• In-patient treatment that is medically necessary due to illness or accident.
• Room rent, ICU fees, hospital charges and doctor fees.
• Pre and post hospitalization expenses.
• Cover for day-care procedures.
• Treatment taken at home-domiciliary treatment cover.
• Emergency ambulance services.

Free health check-ups for wellness purposes are also a part of many Health Insurance policies. In HDFC Health Insurance Plans for Senior Citizens, a free yearly health check-up can be availed after completing 4 years under the policy.

Waiting Periods & Sub-Limits in Health Insurance Policies

It is important to note that there might be some waiting periods and sub-limits applicable to either all the benefits covered under the Health Insurance Plan or on some specific diseases or treatment procedures. If you opt for an HDFC Medical Insurance Plan, a 30-day waiting period is applicable to all the benefits except for accidents and on renewal.

Cover for Pre-Existing Conditions under a Health Insurance Plan for Seniors

Health Insurance companies also request for the applicant’s medical check-up report to evaluate insurability. It is possible that your parents must have some pre-existing health conditions before they opt for a Health Insurance Plan. Most Health Insurance Plans have certain conditions for covering pre-existing conditions.

For instance, pre-existing conditions are covered under your HDFC Health Insurance policy after being covered under the policy for a period of 48 months and in some policies after a period of 3 years.
Similarly, some companies will cover pre-existing conditions after a shorter waiting period or have a sub-limit for covering pre-existing conditions under their Health Insurance Plans for seniors.

Health Insurance Plans: Exclusions

Based on the underwriting guidelines, each Health Insurance company will have its own set of exclusions. Some common exclusions under most Health Insurance Policies for Seniors are:

• Treatment that is medically necessary is covered under your Health Insurance Policy. Any treatment that is done for wellness purposes is not covered under your policy.
• Health issues arising due to the use of drugs and alcohol.
• HIV/AIDS or any other sexually transmitted disease-related treatment.
• Hospitalization in case you have been a victim of war, riots etc.

This is not an exhaustive list of exclusions and there could be many more. Do take the exclusions into account before you make a buying decision.

Tax-Saving Benefits offered by Health Insurance Plans for Senior Citizens in India

• If you are a senior citizen taking a Health Insurance Policy for yourself and your spouse, you can avail tax saving benefits for up to INR 60,000 per year under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act of India.
• If you take a Health Insurance Plan in India for your parents, you get tax benefits for INR 50,000/- if only one of your parents is above 60 years of age. Plus, if the rest of your family is also covered, you get an additional benefit for INR 25,000/-. This works out to a total of INR 75,000/- per year.
• If you are above 60 years of age and your parents are also covered under the same Health Insurance Policy, you can get a tax benefit for up to INR 100,000/- per year.
• You can also include a maximum of INR 5000/- per year for preventive medical check-ups in addition to your deduction amount under Section 80D.

These amounts are in addition to the tax benefits you get for INR 1,50,000/- under Section 80C.