Should you buy Health Insurance Plans offered by Banks?
Many banks in India are offering health insurance plans as additional benefits to account holders. These health insurance policies offered by banks come with low cost and several other benefits. In this article, I would highlight the positive factors, limiting or negative factors and whether you should consider such health insurance plans offered by banks or not.
Why Banks are offering Health Insurance plans?
As part of additional benefits to account holders, banks are offering group health insurance plans. These are not just for account holders, but they are offered to account holder's spouse, their children too. Some of the banks have gone one step ahead and started offering to account holder's parents also. Since there are several benefits and features, many of us are getting attracted towards it. However, banks are not issuing these health insurance policies directly. They are acting like intermediary and insurance companies are offering these plans to customers of the bank.
What are the positive factors of health insurance plans offered by banks?
1) Low premiums: These insurance policies issued by banks come with low premiums. E.g. Punjab National Bank offers 3 Lakhs health insurance for account holder + spouse + 2 children for just Rs 4,500 per annum. However, if you consider any other private insurance company offering health insurance, it costs you minimum of Rs 7,000+ per annum.
2) Policy renewal upto maximum age: These plans provide maximum renewal age between 60 to 80 years, depending on the bank where you are considering health insurance. E.g. Andhra Bank, Bank of India, Punjab National bank offer maximum renewal of 80 years.
3) No medical tests: Health insurance plans offered by banks do not require to undergo medical tests. This is useful especially when you have aged parents.
4) Eligibility is you should be account holder: If you are the account holder of the bank, you are eligible to take such health insurance plan. You need to apply to your bank for a health insurance plan directly.
5) Some banks offer adding parents too: Some of the banks are offering health insurance plans where you can add your parents too. Getting health insurance for senior citizens or aged parents is difficult. Even if we get, it comes with high premiums. This special feature is offered by some of the health insurance plans offered by banks like Andhra Bank, Indian Bank etc.
What are the limiting or negative factors of health insurance plans offered by banks?
1) Banks are only intermediaries: Since insurance is offered by insurance companies where banks have tie-up, banks are just acting like an agent or intermediaries. There is no real benefit to the bank by offering such plans. You cannot question bank for any problem in your health insurance policy.
2) Insurance company can change anytime: Banks have tie-up with insurance companies to offer health insurance plans for banks. However, banks can change insurance company at any time without notice to you. Hence, you may not have any choice just to accept the insurance company chosen by banks irrespective whether you like it or not.
3) Service levels may be pathetic: I heard from some of the readers that service levels of health insurance offered by banks are pathetic. Since banks do not take ownership of insurance as they are only acting as intermediary, customers need to depend on the insurance company and cannot do much about service levels.
4) Same premium irrespective of age: Some of the banks are offering health insurance plans where they charge same premium irrespective of age. This would be discouraging for young aged people who want to buy health insurance through banks.
Are there any good health insurance plans offered by banks?
There are several best health insurance plans offered by banks. However, it depends on your requirement. It could be for you or for your family or for your parents, etc. Here is the list of few good health insurance plans offered by banks.
- Bank of India – Swasthya Bima Policy
- Andhra Bank – Arogyadhaan Scheme
- Canara Bank – Canmediclaim
- Punjab National Bank – Royal medical claim
- Indian Bank – IB Arogyaraksha
Conclusion: Health insurance policies offered by banks come with low cost, good benefits, no medical tests etc. However, consider both positive factors as well as negative factors before buying such plans.
Readers, have you purchased health insurance plans from banks? What are your experiences?
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Health Insurance Plans offered by banks