Over the years, medicines have made immense advancements, and that has led to an increase in life expectancy. On the other hand, there is an increase in the cost of medical treatment.
In the UAE, regardless of the profession and age, health insurance is mandatory. As people age, the list of ailments increases and the risk of repeated hospital visits are more. Considering the rising cost of healthcare services in Dubai, it is better to buy separate medical insurance for your elderly parents.
But before getting your parents a health insurance cover, there are a few factors to consider.
1. The Age Factor:
The age of the person insured is the biggest difference and barrier to entry between health insurance for senior citizens and health insurance for younger people. Since health insurance is mandatory in the UAE, insurance companies cannot decline cover to any person regardless the age of the parents.
2. In-patient hospitalization:
In-patient hospitalization coverage is given by the insurance company, for the medical expenses incurred by the policyholder when they get admitted to the hospital. It should cover hospital expenses like medical tests, doctor fees, medicine etc.
You need to look at the sub-limits for certain expenses. Since the number of hospital stays might be higher for a senior citizen, it is essential to choose an insurance that gives your parents maximum in-patient coverage.
3. Pre-existing Illness:
Pre-existing medical conditions or diseases means that an individual is suffering from a medical condition before taking a health insurance policy. If your parents have pre-existing illnesses, check for the terms and conditions regarding pre-existing illnesses when looking for a health insurance policy.
Pre-existing limit depends on the underwriting evaluation of each insurance company. If a pre-existing condition was declared during the time of application, coverage will for the same depend on the approved limit. For Dubai visa holders, the minimum limit for pre-existing and chronic conditions is AED 150,000 even if the total sum insured is AED 1 Million for some insurers. For Northern Emirates visa holders, pre-existing and chronic condition cover is not mandatory. However, it is mandatory for those living in Dubai and or Abu Dhabi.
4. Waiting Period:
The waiting period will restrict your parents to get risk cover for a certain period, especially for pre-existing and chronic illnesses. Waiting period depends on which Emirates the visa was the insurance policy issued. For Northern Emirates, some insurance companies require 1 year or 2 years waiting period. Once this period is over, your parents become eligible to get the required insurance cover. When looking for health policy for your parents, consider a policy that has a lesser waiting period for pre-existing illnesses.
5. Sum Assured:
Senior citizens are more prone to health risk than younger people. So, you must try and get them a sufficient size of health insurance cover. When looking for health policy for your parents, assess the existing ailments and future risks to determine the exact health cover requirement.
However, some companies put a limit on the maximum health cover allowed for the senior citizen which is equivalent to the minimum limit required by the relevant regulatory authority. For eg: the minimum limit in Dubai is AED 150,000 and in Abu Dhabi, it is AED 250,000. In such cases, one may look at more high-end plans which provide higher covers but at higher costs as well.
You should know that there are other factors to consider when buying the insurance policy like room rent allowance, out-patient expenses etc. However, to select the best health insurance policy for your parents, you can contact us. We at New Age Insurance Brokers will be more than happy to support you with the same.