Health and general insurers will soon be permitted to offer specific insurance cover to the public for treatment of vector-borne diseases like dengue, malaria and chikungunya. Regulator IRDAI on Friday came out with an exposure draft on Standard Vector Borne Disease Health Policy under which general and health insurers will be encouraged to offer such policies for one year.
The objective is to make available a standard product addressing the needs of the public for getting health insurance coverage to specified vector-borne diseases, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) said. As per the proposal, the product shall be offered for a fixed term of one year with a waiting period of 15 days.
The insurance policy will cover treatment of dengue fever, malaria, filaria (Lymphatic Filariasis), kala-azar , chikungunya, Japanese Encephalitis and Zika Virus , it said, adding the stakeholders can send their comments on the exposure draft to IRDAI by November 27. Commenting on the draft, Amit Chhabra, Head – HEALTH insurance, Policybazaar.com said the premium under this product will be on a pan India basis and no geographic location or zone-based pricing is allowed.
“The cost of treatment for dengue can range anywhere from Rs 25,000 to Rs 70,000. Therefore, having a vector-borne disease plan in place will help the customers to protect themselves from the vector-borne disease,” he said.
Chhabra further said having an insurance policy for the vector-borne disease is emphasised so that one does not end up losing their financial stability, and health, in case of an emergency. The draft said the nomenclature of the product should be Vector Borne Disease Health Policy, succeeded by name of insurance company. It would be ‘single premium’ product.
“Minimum entry age shall be 18 years for principal insured and maximum age at entry shall not be less than 65 years for all the insured members including principal insured,” it said.
Also, dependent children should be covered from day 1 of age to 25 years. Besides hospitalisation cover, the product would cover AYUSH treatment, and pre and post hospitalisation. Also, the base covers of standard product should be offered on indemnity basis and optional covers should be offered on benefit basis, the proposed guidelines said.