Health Insurance with Maternity Cover
Very few joys in life compare to that of bringing a baby into this world. For many women, if not all, going through pregnancy and motherhood is one of the most significant chapters in their lives.
What should you understand about maternity insurance?
The cost of healthcare and medical expenses associated with pregnancy has gone up excessively. A standard delivery or caesarean procedure can cost anywhere from Rs 60,000 to Rs 2 lakh. And during this stage, financial stress should be the last thing on your mind.
If you decide to start a family, getting maternity insurance should always be a priority. Here are a few things you must understand about this insurance:
Can you get insured while you are pregnant?
While you can get regular health insurance when you are pregnant, you will not be able to get maternity coverage as most companies consider pregnancy a pre-existing condition. This means you will need to undergo a waiting period before availing coverage. Most insurance policies generally have a waiting period of about three years before they cover pregnancy and maternity insurance.
According to a circular from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), on standardised definitions, maternity cover in health insurance plans must include the following benefits:
Maternity-related hospitalisation: Hospitalisation expenses will be covered for up to 30 days before delivery and 60 days post-delivery.
Delivery including pre- and post-natal expenses: This includes regular and caesarean delivery expenses along with any post-delivery complications for the mother.
Hospitalisation charge: Includes room, nurse, and surgeon; anaesthetist consultation; medical practitioner and emergency ambulance charges.
Newborn baby coverage: Neonatal care from day one for up to 90 days. Such plans claim to cover any needs a newborn may have, but it is essential that you enquire about their stance on complicated deliveries or premature labour.
What is not covered in maternity insurance?
While there are many benefits to having maternity insurance, here are a few aspects that are not covered:
Pre-existing diseases affecting pregnancy: If you have a pre-existing disease that could affect your pregnancy, such as high blood pressure or epilepsy, you will not be covered under this type of insurance.
Congenital diseases: These are inherited medical conditions that occur in children before or at birth, such as heart disease, Down Syndrome, or spina bifida that are not covered.
Treatment expenses relating to infertility: IVF or infertility treatments are not covered by maternity insurance.
Medicine costs apart from the ones prescribed by the doctor: Medicines that your doctor prescribes might be covered under maternity insurance. However, any other supplements or vitamins that you take might not be covered under maternity health insurance. Non-allopathic medicines are also not covered.
Doctor's check-up expenses and consultation fees: While you might visit your OB-GYN regularly over your pregnancy, these appointments are not covered under maternity insurance.
Maternity cover as a part of health insurance
It is essential to realise how a maternity cover works under a health insurance plan.
The mandatory waiting period of a health insurance plan that covers pregnancy can range from 2 to 4 years. It becomes imperative, then, to buy maternity cover well in advance. In case you've missed the boat, you can avail of a separate maternity plan by paying a higher premium.
The age of the insured willing to claim the maternity benefits can be up to 45 years. While this is the age parameter set by most insurance providers, you should ideally check with your insurance provider for more specific regulations. Be aware that the leniency of a maternity health insurance policy could vary depending on the age of the expectant mother. So, while looking for the right option, always compare their perks in your specific case.
The premium on these covers can be a little high. This is because, unlike a regular health insurance policy, maternity and pregnancy benefits cover an event that is almost inevitable in life. It is important to do a cost-benefit analysis by comparing several options before narrowing down on what's most suitable for you.
Keeping all these things in mind ensures that your preparation for the future is foolproof. The whole premise of having maternity cover as a part of your health insurance policy is to ensure that the entire pregnancy process is relaxed for you, and there are no unprecedented stress factors in the form of unplanned expenses. The only focus during this precious time should be on the life-changing experience and your baby.
Make sure you #ThinkAhead and choose the right maternity insurance cover for you so that you can plan for yours and your child's arrival and future!