Insurance as a subject is always associated with worries. Individuals feel daunted about the process of choosing the right policy, the budget, extensive paperwork, and ways to buy insurance, especially the health insurance plan that requires a lot of background research and thought put into selecting the best one.
A corporate (employer) health policy comes as a protector to subside the majority stress of individuals.
Employee health insurance is an integral part of the service benefits package that comes in handy for employees and their families in events of medical uncertainties.
The necessity for a corporate health policy came to light with the COVID-19 pandemic when the Ministry of Home Affairs mandated all industrial and commercial establishments and workplaces to provide their employees with medical insurance coverage.
Employee Health Insurance plays a significant role when it comes to going the extra mile for employees and their families. It not only helps employees with financial security but also benefits their families in unforeseen circumstances.
Let us look at some key benefits of employee health insurance, and why it’s crucial in employee well-being:
1. Coverage: Employee health insurance covers the medical expenses of employees, their spouses, and their children, and in some cases, the parents. It includes hospitalisation costs, medical tests, surgeries, and other medical procedures. It hence becomes important to understand the scope and coverage of the policy before choosing it. Every employer’s health policy varies in terms of sum insured, room type, sub-limits, which the employee should be well versed about. It is advised that the organisation should conduct a session to explain the details of the policy and how it benefits them.
While some companies offer a basic cover in the range of 3 lakh to 5 lakh for the employee, spouse and child, there are also companies that provide coverage including the parents which makes for double the insurance cost. There are additional covers available that enhance health protection such as OPD cover for consultation, diagnostics, pharmacy, personal accident cover to offer a lump sum amount in case of death and disability of an employee.
2. Premiums: The cost of the insurance is borne by the employer. Along with corporate health policy, employers also get an option for employees to enhance their coverage using top-up sum insured. Employees need to pay extra for top-up sum insured.
3. Pre-existing diseases: The policy provided by the employer covers pre-existing diseases from the very first day. In case the employee wants to purchase an individual policy, then the pre-existing diseases are covered either after a waiting period of three to four years or in some cases, they are denied the policy subject to the severity of the disease. The corporate health plan keeps them covered without any waiting period.
4. Network Hospitals: Most employee health insurance policies have tie-ups with a network of hospitals which are spread across the country. The policyholder can avail cashless treatment at these hospitals. One must make a note to check the list of network hospitals before choosing the policy.
5. Employee Wellness: One of the primary criteria one must keep in mind as a part of job selection is to learn about the health insurance policy the organisation is offering. The most important aspect of a good employer health plan is that it gives the employees peace of mind and assures their well-being. This valuable benefit shows that the company cares about the people who work with them. It is critical that an employee understands the terms and condition of the corporate policy and understands how the policy adds value to their life.
6. Promotes a Healthy Workplace: Some employers also provide mental wellness coverage which provides employees with an option of wellness consultation sessions. It promotes a healthy workplace by encouraging employees to take help whenever needed to address health issues in a timely manner. This can also help reduce absenteeism and increase productivity.
7. Opting for a Top-up plan: A top up health plan is an added layer of coverage to the existing policy. This is done by opting for a top-up plan at an extra premium which is deducted from the employee’s salary. This enhances the total coverage on top if available employer policy sum insured. Topping up the employee health insurance policy can provide added peace of mind and protection against unexpected medical expenses. Employees can opt in for the top-up policy at the time of joining the company or they can check with the HR team if any plan is available.
While most individuals in an organisation do have retail health insurance policies, an additional employee health insurance is an important benefit that provides financial protection to the workforce and their families in case of a medical emergency.
-The author is executive vice president, and appointed actuary, ACKO. Views expressed are personal.
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