Group medical insurance vs standalone health insurance: Which one is better?
Group medical insurance is better than standalone health insurance or medical insurance plan, but one should take both as later works when one is out of a job or in-between jobs.
Group medical insurance is common among the salaried people as it is offered by their employer, though the recruiter is just a media between the employee and the insurance company. For this insurance plan, the recruiter does the bargaining for employees and develops a customised deal in which staffers' entire family including parents are covered. However, the plan premium has to be paid by the employee. Now the question is, should an individual having group medical insurance through the company they work for also have standalone personal health insurance?
Asked about the difference of benefits coming to the policyholder in group medical insurance and standalone health plan, Jitendra Solanki, a SEBI registered investment expert said, "Group medical insurance is always better when a person is employed because it gives some extra benefits which a standalone health insurance plan can't give. Like maternity benefits are barred for around 3-4 years in standalone health insurance plans while in group medical insurance it is for the period of 9 months to the one-year maximum." He said that while group medical insurance covers an entire family, its premium is comparatively quite low in comparison to the standalone health insurance plan. In case of surgery, there is a cap on the surgical expenses in standalone insurance while in group medical insurance plan, the cap is there but it would be a little higher.
So, on the basis of the above additional benefits, should an individual avoid taking standalone health insurance plan? "Definitely not," said Jitendra Solanki adding, "The corporate group medical insurance is available till you are employed. There can be circumstances like the transition period between resignation in one firm and joining in other company. Some times, especially in startups, the joining gets delayed by two to three months even after handing over the offer letter to the new joinee." In such a period, the standalone health insurance policy would be handy in case an individual comes across any medical emergency either with him or her or with any of the members of his or her family.
"Remember, if you are a salaried person, you would retire too. In that case, the group medical insurance being provided by your employers would automatically end with your services. After retirement, it would be your standalone health insurance or medical insurance plan that would help you in case of any medical emergency. If an individual hasn't taken a standalone health insurance policy earlier, he or she won't be able to get any health insurance plan after retirement that makes a precarious situation for a retired senior citizen," said Jitendra Solanki.
Therefore, a group medical insurance is better than standalone health insurance but the later works when one is not employed or get retired.