24 Feb, 2021 |

Want smooth claim settlement of your parents' health policy? Fill the proposal form right!

Team Beshak
By Team Beshak
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If you're trying to buy a health insurance policy for your elderly parents - you will face this rather bizarre challenge. You want to make complete, accurate and truthful declarations to the insurer, through the proposal form - and very well know how crucial this is, to getting a hassle-free claims experience later on. 🙂

As you sit down to make a record of their current and past health - you'll suddenly realise that you're not completely sure of their entire medical history. You have to be very lucky - if your parents are forthcoming about all their medical conditions and tell you everything in one go!

But if you're not, like a majority of us - here's a cheat-sheet, a fool-proof step-by-step guide so you can never go wrong!

1. Begin with what you know.

Starting with the very basic knowledge you already have, make your first list. List down all the ailments and diseases that you know for sure that your parents have. Spend a few minutes, trying to remember if you've taken them for any medical tests, doctor visits in the past - and for what reasons. Through the next few steps, you'll upgrade this list - with additional information you'll gather from other sources.

2. Ask your parents. Ask them again.

Now, speak to your parents about their medical history. This is possibly the trickiest part of this process - because sometimes, your parents might not even consider certain conditions 'diseases'. For example, they might have vertigo that comes and goes, or is triggered by certain rare situations. Most likely, they'll not think it's important to tell you about this. Another example is hypertension/ BP, where your parents might not even consider it a disease, and hence don't think it important to mention. Mothers might simply be hesitant to speak openly about gynaecological conditions. It is your duty to make them feel comfortable. Ask questions and help them open up.

3. Check all their available medical files.

After having a word with your parents check all the medical files you have access to. This might get challenging if your parents have not lived in the same place, or with you, all their life. Look specifically for conditions that they missed tell you about. This step becomes simpler if your family is in the habit of digitising all medical records and test reports. It's simple, when done regularly - and goes a long way in having complete insight into a person's medical history - both for insurance purposes - and for the purpose of better diagnosis and treatments themselves, should the need arise. If you've not digitised all your medical records yet, you should do it right away!

4. Check all the medicines they take regularly.

Your parents' medicine box could be the treasure chest of insights about your parents' health. They could've been taking the same medicines on repeat for years - without clearly understanding what they're for! They do so because the doctor asked them to - and have then, just continued with little thought. So, go through every medicine sheet they're taking right now and make a note of the conditions, these medicines are prescribed for.

5. Speak to the family doctor

Once you've gathered all your intel at home, you should next speak to your family doctor. They will most likely know your parents’ medical history better than you. It is also likely that they were involved in some capacity for old treatments, hospitalisations, surgeries, etc. that might have occurred in the distant past. So, consider giving them a visit and get detailed inputs from them too.

Why take so much effort?

Even a minor miss, error, or misrepresentation of medical history that you are aware of, could be grounds for the insurer to decline your claim, or worse, cancel your policy altogether. The insurer expects you to provide a thorough and truthful account of medical conditions - "To the Best of Your Knowledge". This means that it remains your responsibility to make every effort - to find out and inform them about the medical conditions.

This will help them make a proper assessment of the risk they're taking, by insuring your parents' health - and decide on a premium amount you'll pay.

An understandable question

We're sure you might have a question in your mind -

Can the insurer decline your claim for an illness or medical condition you were not aware of?

No, they cannot. As long as you've done your due diligence, the insurer cannot decline your claim or hold you responsible for a genuine miss, or a condition that you yourself weren't aware of. The only valid reason they'll decline your claim is if you've fraudulently or intentionally filled the wrong information in the proposal form.

We hope this article makes it slightly easier for you to get a detailed and accurate history of your parents' health.

If you like this quick cheat-sheet, let us know in the comments below. And if you have questions, you can post a query on our forum, and get answers from insurance experts in 6-8 hours.

Key takeaways
  • You've to inform the insurer about every detail of your parents' medical history - to the best of your knowledge - in the health insurance proposal form
  • For this, first you make a note of all the history you're aware of, and then sit down with your parents to get their inputs for this list.
  • Next, go through all medical files and the medicine box, to get further details into any ailments - mild or severe and include it
  • Finally, pay a visit to your family doctor to fill any final gaps and hence, provide a complete and accurate medical history for your parents' insurance policy
  • Once you've done your due diligence, you can remain worry free about getting a smooth claims settlement, when the time comes.
Team Beshak
Written by,
Team Beshak, We breathe insurance :)

We are a group of young members of the Beshak community. We come together to brainstorm, write relevant and useful content for people (just like us) who want to figure insurance on their own. If you too want to share inputs/write for us - send us a "hey" to info@beshak.org

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