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Does Health Insurance Cover Mental Health

by Priyanka SINGH
health insurance

Does Health Insurance Cover Mental Health

Mental health refers to a person’s emotional, psychological, and social well-being and the way it affects their thinking, feelings, and actions. If a person experiences mental health issues, their thinking, mood, and behaviour could be affected and thus, it is a very important factor throughout a person’s life. Mental health has been a topic of importance and even the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has instructed insurance companies to cover mental health under health insurance policies.

 

In today’s world, mental health must be addressed as it is as important as physical health. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, people have realized the importance of mental health. Many suffered from mental illnesses due to the difficult times and the unprecedented circumstances they were faced with for themselves and their loved ones. Even prior to the pandemic, there has been a progress on 16th August 2018, the IRDAI asked insurance companies to make this very crucial inclusion in their health insurance policies. 

 

Factors that Contribute to Mental Health Issues 

 

  • Biological factors such as genes or brain chemistry
  • Life experiences such as trauma and abuse
  • Family history of mental health issues

 

Benefits of Covering Mental Health 

 

  • Mental health insurance cover in-patient hospitalization charges, treatment costs, diagnostic test charges, cost of medicines, ambulance charges, etc., similar to a normal health plan
  • The policy covers those suffering from cognitive disabilities, thinking difficulties, memory loss, problems in behaviour and decision-making skills
  • Some insurance providers offer OPD benefits that cover consultation costs, counselling, and rehabilitation for the illness

 

Diseases Covered Under Mental Health Insurance 

 

  • Acute depression 
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Bipolar disorders
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Schizophrenia
  • Dementia
  • Psychotic disorder
  • Attention deficit or hyperactivity disorder
  • Mood disorder

 

Waiting Period

 

This policy comes with a waiting period of about two years. So, if a person buys health insurance that provides coverage for mental health issues, they will have to wait for two years to make a claim. The patient should also have been admitted in the hospital for 24 hours to make the claim. Remember that the waiting period and time limit to make the claim would vary from insurer to insurer.

 

What It Does Not Cover 

 

  • Outpatient consultations
  • Mental illness caused due to addiction to alcohol or drugs
  • Recurring mental conditions due to not following the treatment and medications

 

Who Should Buy this Mental Health Cover? 

 

In the current stressful lifestyle, a large number of the population have become vulnerable to mental illnesses. Many times, people may not be aware of their condition and may not recognise early signs, leading to delayed assessment and treatment. It is important that everyone opts for mental health insurance coverage. Those who have a history of mental health issues must consider buying it since they are more prone to requiring ongoing or future treatment. Those who have also suffered from traumatic experiences or abuse should consider buying it as it would be wise to avail the best professional treatment for any deep scars that might resurface.

 

Most medical expenses cut into personal savings. Expenses for medical treatment including mental health problems often come unexpected. Buying health insurance that covers mental health will minimize the financial burden for the policyholder. To know more about health insurance covers, click here!

 

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