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Things to think about when buying health insurance

By Marianne – on in News, Learn

There are 10 crucial elements that you need to consider before you purchase an insurance policy

Waiting period

It’s always best to buy an insurance policy when you’re still young. This is because most policies impose a waiting period to make sure you have no pre-existing conditions; this can last between two and five years. Buying when you’re young cuts the danger of a condition appearing during this waiting period.

Family history

When you buy your insurance plan, think about how many family members you want to be on your plan and their age. You have to notify the insurance company of any pre-existing conditions and they’ll want to know full medical histories for every person on the policy.

Choose your cover amount

The amount for which you’re covered is meant to be sufficient to cover you for a whole year. Think carefully about this; factor in your age, your income, and the sort of claim you might be making. Generally speaking, the younger you are, the less cover you’ll require. Make sure you can afford the premiums but don’t cut corners and end up with inadequate coverage.

Cashless hospitalization

Insurance companies have links with network hospitals where policyholders can experience cashless hospitalization when a medical emergency arises. This means that you won’t have to complete a lot of paperwork when you’re discharged and you don’t have to worry about finding money to pay for your treatment. Check that your insurer has facilities that offer this in your vicinity.

Maternity cover

It’s crucial to see whether your health insurance will offer you maternity benefits. Health care during pregnancy is already incredibly expensive and an extra hospital bill could cause significant hardship. Remember to check on the waiting periods – if you take out a policy in January, you won’t be able to claim for birth costs in June.

Pre/post-hospitalization costs

Check that your health insurance will cover the costs you might incur before and after your hospital treatment. These can include paying for ambulances, tests carried out before you are hospitalized, follow-up consultations, drugs, etc. Make sure your insurance policy covers you from end to end of an illness, not just for your hospital stay.

Claim process

Check out the insurance company’s claim process for simplicity. If it’s complex and lengthy then when an emergency arrives this can be a big problem both for you and for your family. Research a number of companies and choose one that has a reputation for settling claims quickly.

Cumulative bonus

The cumulative bonus means that your insurance threshold can rise if you haven’t made previous claims on your policy. When you renew your policy, you may find you’re insured for more than you were before at the same price. Check out what the company offers before signing on the dotted line.

Preventative health checkups

After a certain age, we should all have regular health checkups with thorough testing. This can be extremely expensive. Choose an insurance plan that incorporates yearly preventative health checkups without extra charge.


Never sign any insurance policy, but particularly a health insurance policy, without looking at the small print there may be a sub-limit or cap on the amount the insurer will pay out, and this could affect your future claims. Make sure you know how this sub-limit is worked out and that you are happy with it.

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Since she was young, Marianne has had a keen interest in all aspects of health sciences. His studies in nursing led her to the desire to help people. In addition to working in a clinic, she writes articles on health and nutrition. It's her way of doing good for others.