IRDAI frames COVID-19 health cover norms

A standard, indemnity-based health insurance cover for COVID-19 or a policy reimbursing the cost of the treatment, up to the sum insured, including on homecare and AYUSH treatment, will be offered by all health insurers on or before July 10. This follows insurance regulator IRDAI firming up guidelines for such a standard COVID-19 specific product and making it mandatory for all general and health insurers to launch the same within the deadline. The product, to be called Corona Kavach Policy, followed by the name of the insurance company, will be an individual health policy, with an option to cover the family members. The minimum sum insured will be ₹50,000 and the maximum limit ₹5 lakh.

Healthcare workers will be covered under the policy and will get 5% discount on the premium.

The tenure will be three-and-a-half months, six-and-a-half months, and nine-and-a-half months, including the waiting period.

The mode of premium payment is single and no geographic location/zone-based pricing is allowed. The cost of treatment towards any co-morbid condition, including pre-existing comorbid conditions, along with the treatment for COVID-19, will have to be covered by the policy, according to IRDAI.

Under the base cover, COVID-19 hospitalisation expenses will be covered, including PPE kit. Expenses on hospitalisation for a minimum of 24 hours as also those related to ICU/ICCU expenses will be admissible. The policy will cover expenses incurred on road ambulance upto a maximum of ₹2,000 per hospitalisation.

IRDAI also urged all insurers, including life insurers, to offer by July 10, an individual COVID-19-specific standard benefit-based health policy under which a lumpsum benefit equal to 100% of the sum insured will be payable on “positive diagnosis of COVID-19, requiring hospitalisation for a minimum continuous period of 72 hours.” On payment of 100% sum insured, the policy will get terminated.

Like indemnity-based cover, the tenure of Corona Rakshak cover will be same – 105 days; 195 days; and 285 days – and the insurer will determine the premium. The minimum sum insured will ₹50,000 and the maximum limit ₹2.50 lakh.

On IRDAI issuing the guideline, Head – Retail Health Underwriting of Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Rashmi Nandargi said these standard policies specific to Covid-19 are a welcome move considering the current situation where people are worried about the COVID-19 treatment costs. These policies will cater to people who currently do not have a holistic health insurance policy and are looking to cover themselves against COVID-19.

“At Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, we are working on these products currently and should be prepared to offer them soon to our customers,” she said.

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