Health insurance has seen quite a few events in India. With growth in economy, prosperity, and awareness, individuals are more inclined to negotiate, avail and use services like group insurance benefits.
For employers, as well, group insurance schemes like health, critical illness, life and superannuation have offered an inexpensive way to attract talent and differentiate themselves as a more attractive employer.
Many changes have started to take place in healthcare around the world due to changing economic scenarios. This has certainly paved the way for the changes in the insurance industry as well. Also, many studies conducted by various interest groups mapped the growth of Indian businesses and employee benefit options moving closer to the western economies. That too points to the changes this industry will be poised for in short term.
So, what are these expected trends in Group Health Plans?
Unprecedented Increase in Awareness of Health Insurance
According to a study conducted by Neilson India jointly with a leading insurer concluded that more than 70% of the population feels health insurance to be a more important subject than life insurance. Additionally, the industry itself has seen the growth in premium collected for health insurance at 27% year on year.
This can be attributed to the proliferation of the internet and lower cost of information sharing for insurers. With health insurance gaining importance for individuals, organisations and associations with group health insurance will enjoy an edge in attracting talent.
More Daycare Expenses Covered by Employer’s Health Plan
A number of complicated treatments have become a day care treatment with the improvement in technology and medical knowledge enhancement. This has forced health insurance plans to evolve, and include more day care procedures under the umbrella.
Nowadays it is common for group health insurance plans to cover over a hundred day care procedures. It may take some more time for the individual health plans to offer similar benefits, but the health plans bought by the employers may already offer such benefit.
More transparent Billing in Case of Cashless Treatments
Health insurers have been facing a higher average claim for cashless treatments (almost double of the reimbursement claims). Among other reasons considered by insurers, overcharging of insurance plans may also be one of the reasons for the same.
Since, group health plans offer maximum cashless coverage, the group health insurers are emphasizing more transparent billing for covered treatments.
Rising Group Health Premiums
The increase in the cost of insurance comes naturally, given the rising claim amount. Group health premiums may rise up to 50%. Although, not everything can be blamed on rising claims as the overall membership is also on the rise.
Insurers especially PSU insurance companies are targeting stock exchange listing in the near future. This brings focus on their profitability, and for that, it is necessary for them to have stronger balance sheets.
New Innovative Group Health Products
Latest health insurance regulations allow insurers to run pilot projects for innovative new insurance products. Insurers can offer these pilot products for few years in the market, and if the product is not successful, it can be pulled out. However, members will have a chance of shifting to another health plan offered by the same insurer.
Smaller Groups can avail Group Health Insurance
Earlier insurers freely decided the minimum group size they wanted to insure under a group health policy. The minimum number of members ranged from 10 to 50 from one insurer to other, and almost none offered to cover a group smaller than 10 members.
However, the new regulations have reduced the group size to seven, to be eligible for group health insurance. The only condition for the group is that it should have a homogeneous risk profile.
Meaning, even small shops, entrepreneurs, and proprietorships will also be able to buy group health policies for their staff. So being small no longer means any fewer benefits to your employees.
How to Buy?
Gone are the days when you had to call multiple insurers and collect information manually about different group health plans. Then spend time on finalizing the scheme you deemed fit. Nowadays, online corporate insurance advisors like SecureNow, offer all information about group insurance products on your fingertips.
Simply visit their website, fill in the information and apply. You also have access to 24×7 customer support, in case you are stuck somewhere.