Typically while planning our goals we consider inflation in the range of 6-8%. But there are certain areas like education and medical it is much above it.
With emergence of newer medical technology and innovation cost of medical treatment has increased many fold.
The biggest question which we all have in our mind is how much medical cover should I take to have minimum impact on me financial future.
There is no one size fit for all kind of formula for it, but yes depending on following points you may zero in on a particular amount :
1. Room, Boarding and Nursing Expenses : Most of the health policies permit you to spend 1% of the sum assured per day on room, boarding & nursing expenses or actuals whichever is less. Many a times all the other expenses from operation to investigations or treatment packages are also linked to it.
So one way to decide on minimum sum assured requirement is to inquire in a good nearby hospital the per day room rates of the category you are comfortable with. Like if yu are comfortable with semi deluxe category on twin sharing basis whose charges are Rs.2500/day. Then in that case you must select minimum sum assured as Rs.300000.00.
2. Family history: Health insurance must cover the entire family. Some families have a history of diseases like diabetes and of heart. If the lifestyle in not changed or improved to control it may result in bigger complication, so they need to have additional cover.
3. Your age: An early start helps. Premiums then are lower because you are unlikely to have pre-existing diseases. If you are 35 or below, you should start with a sum insured of Rs.2 - 3 lakh and increase it by 15% every year. Health insurance costs keep increasing sharply – much more than the average inflation figures released by the government.
Normally medical insurance companies do not increase sum assured beyond age of 50 and in some cases even if they do then it is subject to prior medical test and certain exclusions.Secondly, if you are covered under floater policy and as both of you are moving in higher age bracket there are chances of getting both you and your spouse to have medical complications in the same year. So it is necessary to achieve a particular sum assured as you move closer to that age.
4. Dependents: If you have dependents, wife and kids, you will have to cover them as well. You need a family floater plan which is much cheaper as compared to individual medical plan.
5. Cover from Employer: The company you work for, may offer you an insurance cover. That's great but most often is not sufficient. Also, you could lose these benefits upon quitting the job, especially in a situation where the group cover is the primary health insurance option. You may also ask your employer or his insurer to convert that group policy to individual policy while quitting the job. In most of the cases we miss that. So its better safe then sorry and have an individual policy as well.
6. Top up cover: Considering the rising medical costs, especially with new and advanced procedures being available in India, choose a product which can be taken as a top-up policy (with some deductions applicable). Such a plan would give you continuity benefits over your existing policy at a very low premium.
It is always advisable to consult your financial planner who can guide you much better in taking such crucial decisions.