I want to take health insurance for my mother who is 63 years old and has no existing health insurance. She has diabetes and mild hypertension but no complications have arisen because of these pre-existing diseases. Which policy is best suited for my mother, will she have to bear high premiums? Also, will the premiums keep increasing every year?


The Covid-19 pandemic has reiterated the importance of being financially prepared for any health emergencies, across age groups. Needless to say, elderly parents are at a high risk of medical emergencies. They must have comprehensive health insurance that ensures high-quality treatment, if need be. Age is the prime factor affecting health insurance premiums. Therefore, this translates into the fact that, higher the age of the policyholder, higher would be the chances for health risks, which simultaneously reflects in the higher cost of premium.

Fortunately, to make health insurance pocket-friendly for our senior citizens, there are many insurance players who have now launched plans specifically catering to their needs.

A few plans have co-payment clause ranging from 30 per cent to 50 per cent, which means that you will have to bear the 30-50 per cent part of the claim. This is one of the options for customers looking to save on the premium and those who can share part of the bill in order to cut down their premium.

Other plans provide the option of choosing a voluntary deductible. For instance, if you choose voluntary deductible for ₹20,000 to reduce your premium, this would mean that claims up to ₹20,000 will have to be borne by the policyholder. While there are other plans too, they are feature-packed without any co-payment or sublimit, and obviously carry higher premium.

I would strongly advise that since your mother has diabetes and mild hypertension, you must disclose the PED while purchasing the health policy and opt for plans with least waiting periods, even if they come at slightly extra cost. You must also compare the features of various available health plans online and read the inclusions, exclusions, and terms and conditions before making the final selection. Lastly, premiums of majority of the plans increase in block of five years. For instance, if you purchase the policy at 65 years then it will increase at 70 years to account for higher claim risk. So, depending on your profile, you may choose to go with any type of plans mentioned above.

The writer is CEO, Policybazaar.com

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