Health Insurance for Parents

Health Insurance for Parents

Parents deserve to live their retired life in peace without stressing about anything. Health is among the main concerns that affect older people. By purchasing health insurance for parents, you keep them safe from financial burdens when they need to get treatment due to a critical illness or when a medical emergency strikes. The best health insurance for parents is one that provides a sufficient sum insured, provides all the coverage they need, and comes with a lifetime renewability option.

What are the benefits of health insurance for parents?

The benefits of medical insurance for parents are as follows.

Medical coverage

When you choose a medical policy for parents, it comes with lifetime medical coverage. That is, the insurance policy comes with a lifetime renewability option so that the coverage is applicable until your parents’ demise. As medical emergencies can hit your parents anytime, it is best to keep them always protected so they can live their golden years peacefully and healthily.

Sufficient sum insured

Parental insurance policies typically come with a higher sum insured when compared to other forms of health insurance. This is because older people are more susceptible to critical illnesses and medical emergencies in comparison to younger people. A higher sum insured means whether you get a mediclaim policy for parents or a health insurance policy for parents, there will be no problems concerning the payment for treatment when it is required.

Support for pre-existing diseases

The best health insurance policy for parents usually comes with coverage for any pre-existing diseases that your parents might have. The treatment costs, doctor’s fees, and other costs can put a strain on the finances. With a health insurance policy in place, the financial burden is decreased significantly thereby ensuring they get the treatment and help whenever they need it. Note that there is usually a waiting period of certain months until a claim can be made for pre-existing diseases.

Cover for critical illnesses

A parental insurance policy works well for critical illnesses which can lead to death if not treated timely. As older people are more likely to get critical illnesses such as heart attack, cancer, and so on, a critical illness cover is essential for safeguarding against these diseases. Most of the best insurance providers include a cover for critical illness in the health insurance plan for parents. This ensures an ample sum insured is available to cover these life-threatening diseases.

Types of health insurance for parents

To get the best parental health insurance, you must understand the types of health insurance plans available.

Individual health plans

Individual health insurance plans cover only the insured person. If you want coverage for your parents, you will need to buy a separate health policy for parents on an individual basis. That is, you need to buy a plan for your mother and another one for your father. The benefit of individual insurance plans is they are tailored to the insured person thereby providing maximum coverage for him/her as per their medical history and requirements.

Family floater plans

Family floater plans cover every member of the family. You can get yourself, your spouse, your children, and your parents covered in a single plan. The family floater plans enable you to add more members as and when needed by contacting the insurance provider. These plans tend to be more affordable as the premiums are lower compared to individual health plans. If this is the first time you are thinking to buy health insurance for your parents, you can opt for this.

Senior citizen health insurance plans

A senior citizen health insurance plan provides health insurance for parents above 60 years. It is among the best health insurance for elderly parents that often comes with a lifetime renewability option. It has a less waiting period compared to individual and family floater health insurance plans. It can come with a no claim bonus feature that provides discounts during renewal time if no claims are made during the policy duration.

What are the features of health insurance for parents?

Health insurance plans for parents above 60 usually come with the following features.

Hospitalization expenses

It covers the hospitalization charges that are incurred due to an accident, illness, or sudden onset of a life-threatening disease. Some examples of these expenses are room rent, consultation charges, medicine costs, ventilator charges, and nursing fees.

Treatment of pre-existing diseases

Most of the top insurance providers cover expenses that result from the treatment of pre-existing illnesses after the waiting period is over.

Daycare treatments

Daycare treatments are included in most of the best insurance plans for the elderly. These include procedures such as dialysis, chemotherapy, and so on. Daycare treatments do not require hospitalization for a prolonged time.

Pre and post-hospitalization expenses

When you are purchasing an insurance plan for your parents, you will notice that it will provide cover for the pre- and post-hospitalization expenses. The duration will vary from insurer to insurer.

Treatment of critical illnesses

Health insurance for parents also provides cover for treatment of a variety of critical illnesses such as stroke, heart attack, paralysis, and so on. Make sure you select a plan that provides cover for the most critical illnesses.

In-house treatment

In-house treatment may sometimes be recommended for some people. This type of treatment is often covered by the insurance plan.

Ambulance charges

Medical emergencies can happen anytime and a good insurance plan will provide cover for ambulance-related charges. This ensures you or your parents do not have to worry when they need to be taken to a nearby hospital immediately.

AYUSH expenses

The health insurance plan for parents will also provide cover for AYUSH treatment expenses at any recognized institute in India.

How to claim insurance for parents?

There are two ways to claim health insurance plans for parents. One is reimbursement while the other is a cashless claim. The exact process may differ from insurer to insurer as they have their policies when it comes to claiming insurance.

Reimbursement claim process

The reimbursement claim process is as follows.

  • Step 1: Inform your insurance provider

    Let your insurance provider know about the hospitalization and treatment as is the case. In some instances, you can simply call and inform your insurance provider that you are getting treatment in a network hospital.

  • Step 2: Get the treatment and pay the bills

    Then get the required treatment and settle all the bills and expenses from your pocket. Ensure that you keep all the original invoices with you safely because you need them for the next step. It is best to keep them safe in a folder so you can retrieve them later and send them to your insurance provider.

  • Step 3: Send all documents to the insurance provider

    Once you have been discharged from the hospital, send all the treatment-related documents to the insurance company. You need to send the invoices you stored earlier as well so they can verify the same with the hospital and then settle the claim.

  • Step 4: Reimbursement

    When the claim is verified, the insurance provider reimburses the amount you paid to the hospital. This can vary from one provider to the next but it should not take more than 4 weeks to a month. The insurance provider will let you know when the claim has been settled.

Cashless claim process

The cashless claim process is as follows.

  • Step 1: Fill pre-authorization form

    You must start by filling out the pre-authorization form at a network hospital. You need to also contact your insurance provider so they are aware of the cashless claim that you are about to make. This facility is only available at network hospitals so make sure you only go to those hospitals.

  • Step 2: Wait for an update

    Then submit the pre-authorization form at the network hospital. The network hospital will contact your insurance provider. When the two parties have communicated and approved, they will give an update on the same so you know you can proceed.

  • Step 3: Go ahead with the treatment

    Get the required treatment from the network hospital. You do not need to do anything else as the network hospital will send the bills directly to the insurance provider who will settle the claim. You can leave the hospital once the bills are settled.

What to look at while buying a health insurance policy for parents?

As many types of Mediclaim for parents and health insurance plans exist, it is recommended to take your time when choosing the best medical insurance for parents. The following are some of the major factors you should consider before purchasing the best health insurance plan for parents.

Maximum entry age

When purchasing a health insurance plan for your parent, make sure you know the maximum entry age. Generally, insurance providers put a limit on the maximum entry age at about 70 to 80 years.

Waiting period

Even if you are purchasing a health insurance plan for your elderly parents, there will be a waiting period. Ensure that you select a plan with the lowest waiting period so that claims can be made quickly.

Network of hospitals

An insurance provider with a vast network of hospitals is recommended as it ensures your parents can quickly get the treatment required at the nearest hospital.

Critical illnesses cover

Critical illnesses affect the elderly the most and so a critical illness cover that provides a wide cover for a variety of critical illnesses is crucial. A critical illness cover can be purchased as an add-on too.

Lifetime renewability option

A lifetime renewability option is vital when you are purchasing a health insurance policy for your parents. Not all policies come with this option so ensure you get one that has this feature.

Claim settlement ratio

When looking for a reliable insurance provider, look at their claim settlement ratio to understand how well they settle claims. The higher the claim settlement ratio, the easier it is to settle claims.


Some health insurance plans come with a sub-limit. When selecting a plan, make sure there is no sub-limit and even if there is a sub-limit, it should be as low as possible.


Certain health policies can have a co-payment clause which requires you to pay a part of the treatment cost. Try to look for a policy that does not have a co-payment clause.

Tax benefits on parents’ health insurance policy

The following are the tax benefits of medical insurance plans for parents.

Benefits of senior citizen plan

The tax benefits on senior citizen plans are higher than other health insurance plans. If you have purchased a health insurance plan for your parents, you can claim a deduction of up to Rs. 50,000. You can also get a tax deduction of up to Rs. 1 lakh on the expenses incurred due to diseases and illnesses of people above 60 in India.

Deduction on preventive check-ups

Did you know that you can claim a tax deduction based on expenses incurred in preventive check-ups for your parents? You can claim deductions on OPD consultation charges incurred on getting diagnostic tests for your parents. Basically policyholders or individuals can enjoy deductions up to Rs 5000 on expenses incurred towards preventive health check-ups monthly. On an annual basis, claim up Rs 25000/ Rs 50,000.

Advantages of a single premium plan

You can claim tax benefits on the premium paid for your parent’s health insurance plan and this applies to multi-year plans. Also, note that the lump sum is eligible when it comes to the deduction. The tax deduction will depend on the total premium paid for the term of the plan. You can get as much as Rs. 50,000 tax deduction under Section 80D for the insurance premiums paid.

Key takeaways

Purchasing health insurance for parents is necessary because of medical inflation, high medical expenses, and an increase in the prevalence of diseases. As older people are more susceptible to health problems, health insurance protects them from financial hardships. When choosing a health plan for parents, you must consider the type of health insurance required, the sum insured, the extent of coverage, maximum age, and the waiting period.


Can I get health insurance with my parents?

Yes, you can purchase a family floater health insurance plan provided they meet the eligibility criteria.

If your parents are senior citizens, you will not be allowed to add them to the family floater plan. Instead, you can purchase a separate mediclaim policy for parents above 60 years.

What can I do to improve my parents’ insurance coverage?

You can enhance insurance coverage by customizing the policy in various ways. You can choose a higher sum insured when you renew the policy for better financial protection. Another idea is to opt for some add-on covers that provide wider coverage.

Can I include my parents in my current health insurance policy?

Yes, it can be done if you have already opted for a family floater plan. You must check the maximum age to ensure your parents fit the eligibility criteria and can be added to the existing policy.

When should you buy health insurance for your parents?

You should buy health insurance for parents as early as possible as medical inflation is constantly increasing and so is the cost of treatment. If you plan to pay for medical costs out-of-pocket, you will run out of your savings soon.

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