M Ramesh

Chennai, April 20

ICICI Prudential Life Insurance is planning to bring in a health insurance product that would also have a "savings element" built into it. If it does bring out the product, the company may well be the first to do so in India.

Usually standalone health insurance products do not give the customer something back. You pay the premium; the insurance company pays for the covered medical expenses. If there is no medical expenditure, you get nothing. This is because typically health insurance products are for short periods, usually one year.

Life insurance companies offer health cover in combination with life insurance products. ICICI Prudential, however, has a product that it calls `Health Assure', which is a standalone health cover for six specified illnesses.

At a press conference here, the company's Executive Director, Mr N S Kannan, said that the company had acturial expertise to offer health covers for chronic diseases whose treatment happens over a long term.

Now, the company is mulling bringing in another standalone health product sweetened with a savings element, Mr V Rajagopalan, the company's Chief Actuary, told Business Line today.

The product would, like a typical life insurance product, fetch returns to the policyholder apart from covering medical expenses. Such products existed in other countries, Mr Rajagopalan said.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated April 21, 2006)
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