Planning for your retirement shouldn’t happen only a couple of years before you retire. Early preparations give you more time to work towards your retirement goals. Additionally, things like investments need time to mature for you to reap the maximum benefits in the future.
One key part of your retirement goals is securing a health insurance plan. As you approach your twilight years, you become more prone to sickness, making it all the more important to safeguard your health after retirement.
Whether you’re preparing for your retirement or looking to purchase a plan for your senior citizen parents, you need to know what to look for in a good health insurance plan. This list provides helpful tips you should keep in mind when shopping for health insurance or HMO for senior citizens in the Philippines. Keep in mind that this article is designed to engage interests only, it is not meant as investment advice.
1. Start as early as possible
A common misconception is that health insurance should only be purchased when you see the need for it. However, it’s crucial to get a plan as soon as possible—even when you or your parents are far from retiring.
Many insurance plans tend to have age restrictions, preventing access to certain benefits. Additionally, premiums generally get higher as the insured gets older.
Aside from the age barrier, insurance plans typically require regular premium payments. In retirement, you may no longer have regular sources of income. Getting an insurance plan early on allows you to prepare for this recurring expense and account for it in your overall retirement fund.
2. Opt for critical illness plans
One crucial part of selecting health insurance for senior citizens above 60 years in the Philippines is critical illness coverage. Health conditions like cancer, diabetes, and stroke can be difficult to handle and often require longer care and maintenance. Sustained medical care can take its toll on you and your family’s finances.
Critical illness coverage typically guarantees that the insured will receive a lump sum amount when diagnosed with the illness. When considering a plan, take note of the illnesses covered and select one that can provide the most protection.
Health insurance plans in the Philippines like BPI-Philam’s Critical Care 100 covers 100 diseases for insured parties up to 100 years of age. This protects you or your parents from possible ailments and ensures that these benefits continue even in old age.
3. Choose a trusted insurance provider
Acquiring an insurance plan is also a form of investment—you’re putting your hard-earned money in the hopes that it will pay off when the time comes. However, selecting an appropriate insurance plan is not enough. Knowing that you will be relying on your insurance for medical emergencies and needs, having a trusted and reliable insurance provider is essential.
Do your due diligence and thoroughly research the provider you’re considering. Aside from word-of-mouth feedback from your peers, check the internet for reviews. Does the provider pay on time? Are the benefits as good as promised? Take note of these reviews before purchasing a plan.
4. Check the terms for pre-existing illnesses
Some people may already be dealing with certain illnesses even before getting insurance coverage. When considering a health insurance plan, pay close attention to the coverage for pre-existing diseases. Look out for details like which illnesses qualify for coverage and the type of benefits available for them.
Some insurance providers may have what’s called a waiting period. This means that you will not be able to file claims for pre-existing illnesses within a set time. The waiting period will differ based on your chosen provider but will usually take anywhere from 2 to 4 years.
Pre-existing illnesses are also sometimes put under a co-payment clause. This means that the insured must shoulder a part of the claim from their own funds. Again, the percentage the policyholder must co-pay will depend on the specific terms of your plan. Keep these terms in mind as you look for a suitable plan.
5. Read the terms and conditions carefully
When it comes to health insurance for senior citizens, there will be many additional terms and conditions, like exclusions. These are medical conditions and procedures that the plan will not cover. Ideally, you want to select a plan that has the least exclusions.
Another thing to look out for is the plan’s sub-limits or caps on the amount policyholders can claim for certain medical expenses, treatments, or procedures, as determined by the insurance provider. This limit will differ depending on the type of procedure, which organs are affected, and the like.
Remember, this plan is meant to solve future health needs. Understanding what the plan covers and how the benefits work is essential in picking a plan that works for your needs. Otherwise, you may end up putting money into something that won’t work for you.
6. Compare price point versus benefits
Health insurance plans aren’t cheap, which is why you want to select a plan that fits your budget while providing the most benefits. When shopping for your plan, don’t be blinded by low premiums. Find a balance between cost and functionality.
Prepare Wisely for the Future
Your retirement years should be spent enjoying the fruits of your hard work. If you buy a health insurance plan now, you can rest easy later on knowing that your health needs are fully protected. Even amidst the COVID-19 crisis, BPI-Philam makes getting insured hassle-free. To learn more, book a virtual appointment with our Bancassurance Sales Executives today.