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Health insurance in your 20s

Health insurance is one financial instrument which you need throughout your life
By Rimme Dirchi | January 12, 2017

Amid the hustle-bustle of big city life, host of concerns take backseat. And concerns regarding health hardly ever finds itself parked among our list of priorities. We tend to take our health for granted and an occasional visit to the gym or the yoga studio makes us feel like we have done our bit. The sooner one starts introspecting, the better it will be in the long run. Our twenties are a good time to start paying more attention to the needs of our health and contribute to overall well-being. A health insurance plan will help you achieve that. Investing in a health insurance policy can help you become more aware of your health condition, whether it’s a minor issue or unfortunate cases like accidents or critical illness; it lifts the burden off your shoulders providing you with a financial cushion without leaving a dent on your earnings.

Riding on your health: Most of us have just stepped out of the comforts of our homes and have started working after finishing our studies.  As we start leading socially active lifestyles, whether it is about burning the midnight oil at work, binge drinking on weekends, not getting enough sleep, surviving on a diet consisting of too much caffeine, sugar, all of us become prone to various lifestyle disorders; so it is imperative that we invest in a health insurance plan early. With age on our side, the earlier we invest the more benefits we are likely to receive. If we take a plan, say at 20, when we are likely to have very few health issues, if any, the premium we pay is much lower compared to someone older. The older we get the more expensive and restrictive purchasing the health insurance plan becomes.  

Start with a basic plan: While talking to a friend who recently invested in a health insurance plan, I found out that he had taken a health cover for tax saving purposes. While it may be a good start in itself, starting a basic plan early on is also rather easy on the pocket than compared to someone older who is more prone to diseases. Plus there is always the added value of top up plans that may be included later as per requirement. Top up plans can aid you in extending your insured limit and you can reap the benefits whenever the need arises.

Must for financial independence:  As Ralph Waldo Emerson put it, ‘’the first wealth is our health.’’ Our age is such that we are rather prone to get into early lifestyle abuse, due to bad eating habits, overall inactivity, etc. which in the long run can impact our financial plans terribly. Luckily, today there are host of insurance companies that promote preventive care packages and health camps that provide you with important information, making you more aware of your overall wellbeing. In turn, the policy will help you keep a track on your health early on as it would encourage you to get regular check-ups, blood tests, etc. Our financial independence is directly proportional to our overall health status as few days of being unwell can not only result in loss of pay but the cost of medical treatments can also burn a hole in our pockets.

Financial cushion: Medical emergency requires no invitation to disrupt our daily lives whether we are 20 or 65. It can seriously disturb our life emotionally, physically and also financially. Health insurance plan can aid in cushioning the blows of large medical bills as well as recurring unexpected costs. Investing in a personal health insurance policy is cost-effective when we are in our twenties as we are comparatively free from any kind of health issues. With coverage available at lower premiums compared to buying a plan at an older age, it is not only cheaper but it also keeps you prepared lest you need to use when anything untoward happens. While there is nothing inherently bad about being conservative with health care, for a lot of us, no health plan in place can also translate into losing our savings and assets in the long run while just trying to cover basic medical expenses.

Regular reviews: As you grow older, you are likely to have different set of expectations or problems, with the cost of health coverage increasing alongside. In case you decide to get married, there are options like family floater plan available. A family floater plan would include insurance for the spouse and children. And, depending on the policy you decide to take up, some family floater plans also allow you to include siblings, parents and in-laws.   

Amidst the increase in healthcare costs, one cannot insist on the importance of a health insurance policy enough. Almost all organizations these days have started the practice of providing health care plan at affordable premium rates to it employees. This is the age of medical inflation with medical treatment becoming highly expensive; hence, health care plan provided by the employer is a crucial and cost-efficient investment to start with. Several corporate organisations also provide for family floater plans that include all the family members of the employee. 

 

rimme@outlookindia.com

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