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Insurance claims related to COVID-19 treatment rise in September

The number of insurance claims related to treatment for COVID-19 rose to 40 per cent of the total health insurance claims in September, according to an analysis.

Based on its analysis of industry data, insurance aggregator Policybazaar.com said “most people filing the claim for COVID-19 treatment are senior citizens of age group 60 years and more, followed by people in the age bracket of 41-45 years”.

In September, the insurance aggregator said COVID-19-related claims accounted for 40 per cent of the total health insurance claims. It has been steadily increasing from 8 per cent in May. In July and August, it stood at 23 per cent and 34 per cent, respectively.

Overall, coronavirus cases have been on the rise, especially in few states. The recovery rate is also high.

During the April-September period, COVID-19 claims accounted for 26 per cent of the overall health claims pie while the non-COVID-19 claims stood at 74 per cent. Other claims were mainly related to cardiovascular and respiratory diseases, nervous system disorders, and other infectious diseases, Amit Chhabra, Head (Health Insurance) at Policybazaar.com said.

He said that the average claim amount for COVID-19 was Rs 1,18,000 and the highest claim amount was Rs 2.19 lakh for the age group of 46-50 years.

“In the initial months, when IRDAI introduced COVID-19-specific policies there was a rush to buy those. But now, more people are realising the need for comprehensive health covers. And that way IRDAI’s move allowing people to migrate (from) a COVID-19-cover to a more comprehensive plan is welcome,” Chhabra said.

Also, IRDAI has now made it more affordable for the customers by allowing the monthly premium payment mode. Now a 35-year-old male can get a Rs 1 crore health insurance at around Rs 1,000-1,500 per month, as per the portal.

About non-COVID-19 claims, Chhabra said utilisation of beds for non-COVID-19 cases is now increasing, because post unlock, people are going for their planned treatment and surgeries, which were on hold earlier.

Further, the analysis showed that “eye-related problems are becoming quite common” amongst the elderly people as almost 20 per cent of those over the age of 61 years made health insurance claims for problems related to eye and adnexa. The average claim for eye-related conditions stood at Rs 22,216.

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