Sell standardized COVID-19 policies: IRDAI to insurance companies

Henrietta Strickland
June 30, 2020

According to the guidelines by the IRDAI, the minimum sum insured for the Corona Kavach Policy will be Rs 50,000 and the maximum sum insured would be Rs 5 lakh. The benefit-based product could be taken as a supplementary product. "These policies will cater to people who now don't have a holistic health insurance policy and are looking to cover themselves against COVID-19", Tapan Singhel, managing director and CEO, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, told NDTV.

In a welcome move, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has asked insurance companies to come up with health insurance policies that cover COVID-19-related medical expenses by July 10. One is a regular indemnity policy covering the disease with the tenure ranging from 3.5 months to 9.5 months, and the other is an optional standard benefit cover, which pays out a fixed amount.

Those aged between 18 and 65 years can purchase this health plan. It will also be purchased as a family floater to include spouse, dependent children (up to 25 years), parents and parents-in-law.

Plus, for the Corona Kavach policy, "5% discount in premium shall be provided to health care workers".

The policy, the regulator said, should also include cost of treatment for any comorbid condition, including pre-existing comorbid conditions along with the treatment of COVID.

Room, Boarding, Nursing Expenses as provided by the Hospital / Nursing Home. However, a maximum of Rs 2,000 will be covered as far as expense on ambulance is concerned. It will cover expenses incurred on diagnostic tests, medicines, nursing staff, consultation, cost of Pulse oximeter, Oxygen cylinder and Nebulizer. Both policies will cover the expenses for hospitalisation, home care treatment and Aayush treatment, as well as charges towards pre- and post-hospitalisation.

The medical expenses incurred on hospitalization under Ayush systems of medicine for the treatment of COVID-19 on positive diagnosis in a government authorized diagnostic centre shall be covered up to the sum Insured without any sub-limits. Both policies shall come with 15 days waiting period, during which no claim will be accepted. This will be a single premium, limited period policy without any lifelong renewability benefit. The Corona Rakshak product can be provided by all Insurers (General, Health and Life) transacting Health Insurance business if they wish to.

Under the base cover, COVID-19 hospitalisation expenses will be covered, including PPE kit.

Once the total sum insured is paid, the policy will be terminated, IRDAI said in its notice to insurers.

There will not plan variants allowed to be offered by insurers.

The insurance company will pay 0.5 percent of sum insured per day for each 24 hours of continuous hospitalisation for treatment of COVID-19 following an admissible hospitalisation claim under this policy.

Policyholders can avail of the services on a cashless basis, which shall be arranged by the insurer through network providers.

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