Experts recommend that individuals get comprehensive health coverage for themselves, their families, and their spouses. They should also build a provision for critical illnesses to prepare better for medical emergencies and protect their savings, especially retirement corpus from depleting.
Individuals are also advised to start their retirement planning at a very early age and focus on building retirement funds through dedicated plans such as pension plans, provident funds, and health insurance plans. This approach will allow individuals to make small contributions towards their future and yet manage to build a strong robust corpus that will enable them to secure their life post-retirement and make them capable of accounting for expenses with ease.
That said, let’s discuss how to plan medical care for a tension-free life post-retirement.
Why should you have a medical plan?
Today the cost of medical treatment is skyrocketing and increasing quicker than the inflation rate. Retirement is considered to be a financially dependent phase. Hence, having a reliable financial safety net is believed to help individuals become independent and more efficient in taking care of any form of emergency.
With increasing age, the likelihood of one falling sick or suffering from lifestyle and age-induced illnesses surges. This is why is believed to be an intelligent move to have personalized health insurance coverage to account for critical illnesses and chronic disorders.
Today, individual have several options to shape their medical retirement planning and build a safety net for their future quickly. Options such as health insurance plans, mediclaim policies, and government-backed health plans enable individuals to take charge of their financial future and become more equipped to account for medical emergencies post-retirement.
However, before opting for any particular healthcare plan, it is advised to browse through all available health plans and compare their features and benefits. This will help them understand which healthcare insurance or plan is most suited to them. They first need to identify their healthcare requirement, scope of coverage, and financial standing and then pick a policy.
Private Health Insurance Plans
These health insurance plans are offered by insurance companies that are known to offer personalized health policies to individuals to enable them to account for hospitalization and the cost of outpatient. Some insurers offer tailored investment plans for retirees to cater to their healthcare needs and expenses.
Married couples often opt for comprehensive family floater health insurance policies. Such plans cover both individuals under one policy and are considered to be suited for a nuclear family. Floater plans are known to offer extensive coverage and are more affordable than other plans, making it a cost-effective means to ensure financial protection even in case of medical emergencies.
Critical Illness Insurance
This type of insurance plan offers a lump sum amount to the insured following a critical illness diagnosis.
Annuity Plans with Healthcare Riders
These plans are designed to offer individuals additional healthcare coverage during retirement and enable them to become financially independent during medical emergencies.
Employer-provided health schemes
Some companies offer employees post-retirement health coverage and account for it either fully or partially. This helps employees mobilize a part of their monthly income towards their health coverage and build a safety net for the future. Individuals planning to retire in a couple of years should review the health-benefit scheme offered by the employer and assess whether they need additional security or not.
Government healthcare schemes
These government-backed healthcare schemes are designed to make healthcare accessible and affordable for individuals, especially retired entities.
Central Government Health Scheme: This health scheme provides individuals access to a vast network of government and private hospitals with quick cashless treatment features.
Employees’ State Insurance Scheme (ESIS): This government scheme allows individuals who enrolled for it during their employment to continue availing healthcare benefits in their retired life.
Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY): This healthcare scheme allows eligible senior citizens belonging to economically weaker sections of the society to avail of health insurance benefits.
Individuals need to check the policy and scheme eligibility criteria to avail themselves of the benefits of these healthcare-centric plans. Subsequently, they need to apply for them to enroll in the plans to become a beneficiary.
Other Popular schemes and investments
Individuals can explore these schemes and retirement plans to build a corpus for healthcare and access timely aid –
- Fixed deposit: It helps individuals build an emergency fund for medical expenses and can be used to account for the cost of treatment, hospitalization, etc.
- Senior Citizen Scheme: This scheme helps individuals mobilize a part of their savings to build a corpus by earning high interest on the funds. The scheme also offers tax benefits on the earnings for healthcare funds and promotes savings.
- Public Provident Fund: This pension fund scheme allows individuals to withdraw a part of their saved corpus after 6th year of starting the scheme but for medical emergencies.
- Equity Mutual Funds: This investment option is known to generate substantial returns that help beat the inflation rate. However, they also expose individuals’ profiles to high risk. Hence, individuals should diversify their portfolios with different investment options to build a robust corpus for healthcare needs.
- Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana: This scheme offers a guaranteed pension for a decade a part of which can be utilized for healthcare expenses.
Based on the scope of the plans, individuals can pick a suitable insurance or health plan and build financial support to fall back on during an emergency. Before that they should factor in their retirement goals, available budget, rate of prevailing and projected inflation rate, and medical costs to build a fund. They should also explore other healthcare plans and avenues to build medical funds to cover chronic illnesses and disorders during retirement on time and without dipping into other savings or emergency funds. However, individuals should prioritize their health and improve their lifestyle by opting for a balanced diet, regular exercise, and regular health checks to lower long-term healthcare costs and control symptoms.