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World Diabetes Day 2022: Can blood sugar patients take health insurance? Check policy conditions, premium, other details

World Diabetes Day 2022: According to World Health Organization, diabetes cases are increasing rapidly in India with an estimated 8.7% diabetic population in the age group of 20 and 70 years. 

World Diabetes Day 2022: Can blood sugar patients take health insurance? Check policy conditions, premium, other details

World Diabetes Day 2022 is being observed across the globe today, i.e. November 14. The day provides an opportunity to raise awareness of diabetes as a global public health issue and the efforts needed for its diagnosis, prevention and management. This year’s theme of World Diabetes Day 2022 is ‘access to diabetes education’ and it underpins the larger multi-year theme of 'access to care'. According to the World Health Organisation, there are about 422 million people worldwide who have diabetes and 1.5 million deaths are directly attributed to diabetes each year. So, while diabetes may appear as a common disease, it's can be lethal as well and no one should take it lightly. 

According to World Health Organization, diabetes cases are increasing rapidly in India with an estimated 8.7% diabetic population in the age group of 20 and 70 years. The Government and the medical fraternity are putting in concerted efforts to drive awareness around the ailment so that it can be managed better. Dr. Preet Pal Thakur, co-founder, Glamyo Health, said that the ever-increasing crisis of diabetes and its comorbidities can have long-term deleterious repercussions on health and quality of life. He also urged the government and private organisations to incorporate effective preventive and educational programs/campaigns to raise knowledge about the risk factors for diabetes and its complications.

When it comes to health insurance, a diabetic person often wonders whether s/he is eligible for taking health coverage or not. 

Can a diabetic person get health insurance?

Experts say that a diabetic patient can avail of health insurance but he/she may have to pay some extra premium for that. 

Pooja Yadav, Chief Product Officer, Edelweiss General Insurance, said, "Health insurance policies do cover lifestyle diseases like diabetes, which are diagnosed after policy inception. However, for persons with pre-existing diabetes (where the medical condition exists at the time of buying the policy), the health insurance coverage is usually offered with either a waiting period or loading or both on the applicable premium."

Biresh Giri, Executive Vice President and Appointed Actuary at ACKO, said that many insurers issue policies to individuals with 6.5 – 7 HBA1C readings today which are not at a very severe level. "There are products in the market specific to diabetic patients where the disease is covered with a waiting period and Co-Pay," he said.

Why health insurance is necessary for blood sugar patients?

Managing diabetes can often become strenuous financially and impact household savings, so one should take into consideration various factors while taking the health policy.  "Managing diabetes can often become strenuous financially, thereby impacting household savings and consequently so, various planned life goals. Therefore, getting a diabetes-specific health insurance plan that covers Hospitalisation expenses along with pre and post-hospital care, day care treatment, dialysis, ambulance cover, consumable allowance as well as domiciliary hospitalization among other benefits can secure your health and finances against unforeseen medical emergencies in the future," said Ajay Shah, Director and Head - Retail, Care Health Insurance.

Do diabetic patients need to pay a premium compared to non-diabetic/healthy persons?

Yadav said that the premium for any health insurance coverage is dependent on various factors such as the benefits offered under the health insurance coverage, the sum insured opted for, the age of the insured and medical history among other factors. 

Giri said that insurance companies assess diabetic patients to be at high risk as compared to other individuals because their chance of hospitalisation is higher. "As a result, individuals with diabetes have to pay 15-30 per cent higher premiums. In a usual case for a healthy person with a family of three - parents and child, the premium comes up to approximately 10,000-12,000 for a coverage of 10 lakhs. If the policyholder is diabetic in this case, the premium may go up to 10-20 per cent more depending on the severity of the condition," he said.

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