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Ramesh Kumar

Marketing Manager | Posted on | Health-beauty


Reasons to consider maternity coverage before being in the family way – Best Maternity Insurance Plans in India

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Rajiv and Alka Sharma* are a Bengaluru-based couple in their late 30’s who run an event management company together. After nearly 10 years of marriage, the Sharma’s were thrilled when Alka announced the good news at a family gathering in 2019 that she was expecting. Unfortunately, though, her pregnancy was not as joyous as the couple hoped it would be – there were unexpected complications throughout the three trimesters which were hard to manage, not to mention expensive to treat. When Alka gave birth to little Ruchi* at a private hospital in Bengaluru, the new parents were presented with a whopping hospital bill of Rs. 4.5 Lacs which included the costs of surgery and pre- & post-partum care expenses. This, added to the pre-delivery expenditure incurred by the couple during the troubled pregnancy, left them entirely distraught and down by nearly Rs. 7 Lacs. Rather unfortunate for the couple that they did not have maternity coverage in their health insurance plan, as they ended up having to fund the entire expenditure out-of-pocket.

 

Reasons to consider maternity coverage before being in the family way – Best Maternity Insurance Plans in India

 

The Sharma’s aren’t alone in this ordeal – many modern families, in the midst of multiple complex life situations, tend to overlook the exorbitant costs of Medicare and hospitalization during pregnancy and delivery. Motherhood is a delightful journey but it can be laden with huge expenses. A comprehensive maternity insurance plan will help to mitigate personal outflow to a great extent as it would help to cover costs related to delivery, pre- and postnatal care and more.

 

It is important to consider getting a good health insurance plan with maternity cover before being in the family way for a number of reasons, which are:

 

  • Maternity Waiting Period: Standalone health insurance policies in India do not cover ongoing pregnancies. Maternity coverage carries a waiting period (usually around 9 months to 48 months depending upon the insurer) which has to be met before the benefits can be availed. This is a crucial factor to be aware of in order to take advantage of the coverage when it is needed the most, i.e. throughout the pregnancy and during plus after delivery of the baby. Couples should ensure that they choose maternity cover well in time for this reason.

 

  • Lower Premium in Youth: Majority couples, like the Sharma’s, prefer to start their family a bit late in life once they have established their career and enjoyed a few carefree years of marriage. As one nears middle age, the chances of developing lifestyle ailments such as hypertension and diabetes increase. Applying for health insurance with maternity coverage when the insured has pre-existing conditions would levy a loaded premium as a result, versus if the person were to be in good health. One smart way of saving up on these loaded costs would be to apply for health insurance early on in life, and opt for maternity coverage prior to the applicable waiting period.

 

  • Maternity-related Terms & Conditions: Nearly all insurance companies offer maternity benefits vide add-on covers or optional riders in the base health insurance policy. Moreover, there could be certain conditions affixed with maternity benefits, such as sublimits or upper caps on the amount incurred for delivery charges (whether normal or C-section), maximum number of deliveries (one, or two in some cases) etc. Couples who are planning for a child must assess the features of their health policies early on to determine whether the coverages match their expectations. Should that not be the case, they can consider timely porting of the policy to an insurer who extends wider options so that their medical needs are met when it matters the most.

 

  • Newborn Cover: Another important element is coverage for the infant before and after delivery. Prenatal and postnatal complications cannot be ruled out, especially if the mother is in term when she is older. Not all maternity coverages are extended to the just born and newborn baby; it would depend upon the provisions stated by the insurer in the policy wordings (or customer information sheet) attached to the plan. Understanding these nuances are important to ensure that medical support for both the mother and the baby are taken care of.

 

Parting Words

Parenthood is a huge responsibility and it comes with its fair share of financial commitment. Investing in the right health insurance with ample maternity benefits will go a long way in securing the health and wellbeing of the mother and newborn, and protecting the family’s savings from getting depleted owing to high out-of-pocket healthcare expenditure. Choosing the right maternity cover health insurance plan can be difficult given the wide variety of choices available in India. This is where the guided inputs from an industry professional will help the couple make the right decision. SANA.Insure is a platform that specializes in health insurance advice. The website hosts over a hundred plans from 27 general and health insurance companies, with a simple yet effective 3-step process of shortlisting, comparison and selection of the best maternity insurance plans in India that are the right fit for your family. For more information on health insurance with maternity benefits, you can also get in touch with a Health Insurance Expert at SANA.Insure over WhatsApp (+918278271818) or a phone call (18002028118).

 

 

About the Author:

Mr. Srinath Mukherji, Co-Founder of SANA Insurance Brokers Pvt. Litd. (SANA.insure), has over 35 years of global experience in Management and IT consulting, and as a successful entrepreneur in retail financial services, including microfinance and housing finance.  He is passionate about leveraging information technology at optimal value, to delight customers.  He has a B. Tech from IIT Kanpur and PGDM from IIM Ahmedabad. The views expressed in this article are his own.

 

* Names changed to protect identities