Don’t gamble with your health, get the right cover at the right price.
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A significant increase in the cost of healthcare facilities is no secret given the overall inflation rate for just about anything that is a part of the daily life of a common man. With the rising stats of lifestyle diseases and the unavoidable ailments that come with old age, we are likely to find ourselves in a situation that constantly questions the assurance of being protected and taken care of. Lending a helping hand in assuring well-being, in the long run, are the long-term health insurance plans. These plans help in reducing the cost of hospitalization, assistive living facilities, and other medical and care facilities hence softening the blow of hefty medical bills in the long run.
Adding another plus to the list of economic ways to deal with a health crisis, long-term medical insurance plans offer you protection and coverage against diseases for an increased period, generally 2 to 5 years, depending on the plan that you choose. Unlike the short-term healthcare insurance plans that last from 3 months at the least to about a year at most, these plans not only offer a longer coverage period but also ensure support for more ailments than the short-term coverage plans along with long-term and chronic conditions. Eliminating the need of necessary yearly renewal of the plan, long-term insurance also turns out to be a more economic alternative in the long run.
|Long Term vs Short Term Health Insurance Plans|
|Criteria||Long Term Plans||Short Term Plans|
|Coverage||>1 year||Up to 1 year|
|Renewal Period||Upon expiry||Upon expiry|
|Pre-Existing Disease Coverage||Yes||No|
|Chronic Disease Coverage||Yes||No|
|Customization of Insurance Benefit||Yes||No|
Choosing a long-term plan for yourself and your family can be the right step for many reasons. Since many long-term insurance plans cover pre-existing diseases as well as chronic diseases like cancer and tumours, they can be of great help in cushioning the blow that the overall expenses of the treatment, hospital stay, daycare, and rehabilitation come with.
Longer-term health insurance plans also work as a well-thought and well-arranged backup for unforeseen emergencies. There are diseases that you may be aware of when opting for an insurance plan but if there happens to be a surprise appearance of a disease that you were not ready to tackle physically, emotionally, or financially, long-term insurance will help you in handling the required steps of treatments for it hence, helps in managing the unforeseen, unlike short-term coverage plans.
The primary benefit of a long-term health insurance plan is that there is no tiresome renewal procedure due come every year (or quarterly in case of many small-term plans that last for a few months only). The hassle of missed renewal deadlines, and other similar formalities are no longer a problem with long-term plans on top of being protected from unannounced diseases for the due plan tenure.
The elimination of yearly renewal formalities will also mean that you will not have to go through the rigorous paperwork that a lot of insurance plan renewal comes with.
Since the insurers will be staying with the insurance companies for a longer period, many companies go ahead and offer a discounted premium rate. The elongated period of insurance tenure of long-term plans often results in payment of hefty premium in comparison to the shorter-term plans. But, the discounted rates combined with the overall cost over the insurance period make long-term health insurance plans a more affordable alternative as compared to short-term plans. Some insurance companies may even charge lesser premium rates for younger policyholders.
Just like rates of interest, insurance premium rates are also subject to revisions. Many insurance companies frequently change the rate of premium which often results in hikes. While short-term plans succumb to these revised rates since they lapse every year, the long-term care insurance cost remains to be the same as the initial rate of premium with which the plan started.
Each claim-free year during the tenure of your long-term medical insurance plan is likely to come with a no-claim bonus which can be offered in terms of discounts, a normal monetary bonus, or some kind of added medical care facilities.
Unlike short-term insurance plans, long-term health insurance plan holders are eligible to opt for certain add-on facilities depending on the terms of their individual opted plan. These add-ons may include maternity covers, hospital room rent wavers, home care facilities, etc.
Many insurance companies include daycare and home care facilities as a redeemable expense in long-term care insurance plans as they may cover many chronic diseases, require regular support and care but may not require the patient to be hospitalized. On top of that, many companies even organize welfare programs for the rehabilitation of the patients after treatment.
Like any other health insurance plan, everyone is eligible for long-term care insurance plans – young, adults, and senior citizens alike. Many people choose to opt for LTCs in their 50s and early 60s which is seen as the ideal timeline. However, you can opt for a long-term insurance plan at any age you feel necessary. Being a younger policyholder also comes with several benefits such as discounted premium rates. While the older you are, the higher the premium rate would be since older applicants as high-risk candidates.
Every insurance provider has a different set of policies and rules for each insurance plan when it comes to eligibility criteria. However, the general practice states that the benefits of an LTC insurance plan can be redeemed by the policyholders if and when they are unable to do at least 2 out of 6 ADLs, also known as “activities of daily living”.
It is no easy task deciding whether you would need a short-term or a long-term health care insurance plan and there is no shortcut to choosing the best long-term care insurance plan either. You must look at all the aspects and compare the pros and cons before setting sight on a certain kind of plan. Once decided, you will need to choose among the several options that a multitude of insurance companies provide. Visiting providers' websites is a good practice to gain important insights into the different plans provided.
Online marketplaces like Policybazaar UAE offer a collective look into all the best long-term medical insurance plans offered by top providers along. The best way to go about it is by using several policy comparison tools available online. Along with offering a detailed comparison of long-term health insurance costs, you will also get a fair idea of benefits offered, premium rates, add-ons, the flexibility of payments, and more.
The Bottom Line
There is no right age to start thinking about adding an extra layer of protection around you and your loved ones, especially in times filled with uncertainties. While it can be a difficult issue to think about potential illness or health hazards and plan for them, it is always better to be for either prevention or treatment with an insured coverage, better yet if that coverage extends for more than just a few months. Long-term healthcare plans can turn out to be your best pals if you have cautiously weighed on each factor and expect the improbable. With every piece fitted in its rightful place, long-term medical insurance, and long-term care insurance plans are some of the most economical and viable options to go with.