Money & Banking

Covid cover: New norms on renewal beneficial to customers, say insurers

G Naga Sridhar Hyderabad | Updated on October 14, 2020 Published on October 14, 2020

The option to renew Covid-19-specific health insurance policies, extended by the insurance regulator, is timely and will be beneficial to the general public as well those who have already bought them, according to insurers.

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA) has permitted the renewal, migration and portability of Covid-19-specific standard health policies, Corona Kavach and Corona Rakshak. They can be renewed till March 31, 2021.

“This is a welcome move as the Covid-19 vaccine is yet to come out, and the purpose of these policies is to mainly cover the treatment costs against immediate health risks that people face due to the pandemic,” Gurdeep Singh Batra, Head – Retail Underwriting, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, told BusinessLine.

“With this development, as insurers, we will work towards safeguarding policyholders against the Covid-19 health risks; however, at the same time, we would prefer that such insuring population eventually opts for comprehensive health insurance policies,” said Batra.

According to Amit Chhabra, Head-Health Insurance, Policybazaar.com, the new guidelines “will benefit consumers in numerous ways, offering them a comprehensive overall protection plan when they need it the most”.

“Those who were not able to buy a plan with a higher sum insured in the initial months can now even enhance the sum insured in case they feel the treatment cost may go up and they need comprehensive protection,” he said.

By allowing customers the option to migrate or port from a Corona Kavach policy to any other comprehensive health insurance cover till the end of the policy period of the existing Covid policy, it further helps policyholders to seamlessly move into a cover that provides overall protection. “Thereby, it helps in increasing insurance penetration levels in India,” he added.

According to the chief of underwriting with a leading private insurer, rationalistion of claims is also needed to be looked into.

“Notwithstanding this, the new norms on Corona health cover standard policies will surely help the general public who would like to go for insurance now as the spread of Covid is still unabated as well as those who had already bought the cover,” he said.

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Published on October 14, 2020
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