The second wave of COVID-19 in India has been severe. It has been proved to be a humanitarian crisis that is unprecedented in its scale of impact among all demographics of people. During the first COVID-19 wave that swept through the country last year, it was observed that most of the cases were getting treated in their homes with minimal requirement of health supplies. However, the current mutant of coronavirus has forced doctors to prescribe a hospital stay to the patients.
Adding to that is the panic that has swept over the country. The result is that the country's healthcare infrastructure has been crumbling against the sheer number of cases. And panic has led people to buy life insurance plans to protect themselves and their families.
How to Prepare for the Second Surge of COVID-19?
The first wave of coronavirus did not come with much prior warning. It affected people from all walks of life financially and economically. Observing the severity of the second wave, people must begin preparing for it to reduce the aftereffects of the wave. Here are some of the methods you can take care of to ensure that you and your family are financially secure against the second wave of COVID-19.
Be aware of government policies
The first thing you can do to ensure that you have a financial cushion during these tough times is to research and study if the government has started or is offering policies to help people. You will find that various assistance programs are available for people who are undergoing the issue of reduced wages or unemployment.
Read the terms and conditions of these policies to ensure that you can fit the criteria and follow government announcements regarding relief programs.
Get in touch with your bank
During the second wave and pertaining lockdown, many banks and financial institutions offer their customers payment deferrals. These deferrals are offered on loans for people who are facing financial instability because of the lockdown.
Even if there is no deferral available, you can get in touch with your bank to reschedule or restructure your loans and debts so that they can arrange payments that are manageable during the current conditions.
Refer to specialised coronavirus health insurance
You must have come across the term during the previous surge of COVID-19 as well. However, with the increase in the number of people affected and the severity of the virus, it has become essential to get a policy that will cover all the medical expenses that occur during the treatment of COVID-19.
It is a comprehensive health insurance policy that can cover your pre and post hospitalisation expenses along with in-patient and out-patient expenses. These features make it different from usual health insurance policies.
Why do you Need to be Prepared for the Second Wave of COVID-19?
The increase in hospital admissions has also brought forward a surge in general and health insurance claims. It has been recorded that the number of claims has doubled and are still increasing at an exponential rate. The pandemic has directly affected the economic situation of the country. It would be best if you prepared yourself and your family against any financial fallout in the future.
Most people believed that the second wave would be similar to the first one. Thus, all they need to do is take basic health precautions and follow their doctor's advice. However, it has become imperative to be well-prepared during the second wave because of the following reasons.
- Effect on younger people
While the first wave did not have a drastic effect on the younger, healthier patients, the second wave has been harsh on people alike. Also, most senior citizens have been vaccinated, while it has not reached the younger generation.
- Longer stays at hospitals
In the first wave, the average stay at the hospital for the most severe cases was 8 to 15 days. However, it has increased to 20 to 25 days this time around. Even average patients have to stay for at least a week before they get discharged.
Thus, there has been a steep rise in hospital bills during the second COVID-19 wave as well.
- Grievances and woes in COVID claims
With the exponential rise in the number of cases, the healthcare system is facing a hard time settling COVID claims. There has been a delay in the settlement. Some institutions have resorted to cancelling the policy of cashless claims to COVID patients.
What does Coronavirus Health Insurance Plan Cover?
There are various features of coronavirus health insurance policies. The extent of the cover that the policy provides depends upon the plan that you choose. Here is the list of important covers of the coronavirus health insurance policy.
- Expenses related to in-patient hospitalisation
- Pre-hospitalisation expenses
- Accidental hospitalisation
- Hospitalisation due to critical illnesses
Along with these, you will also find the following standard and add-on covers with the COVID-19 health insurance policy.
- Expenses of the ICU
- Home hospitalisation
- Post-hospitalisation expenses
- Expenses related to the organ donor
- Ambulance expenses
- Recovery benefit
- Maternity benefit with baby cover.
The second surge of COVID-19 has sent the nation into panic. However, with proper planning and precautions, this adversity can be faced without handling financial losses. To ensure that you and your family are completely prepared and secured from the effects of the virus, not just health and hygiene precautions but financial precautions are necessary as well. A health insurance policy protects you from health and associated financial risks.
You can talk to a finance expert to find the best insurance policy and cover for you and your family members. You can choose the plan covering the most important and unavoidable expenses and provide you with recovery benefits.