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NEW DELHI: Bajaj Capital, an investment services company, conducted a survey to understand the impact of the ongoing covid-19 pandemic on investors who are about to retire and have retired.

One of the survey's key findings is that 3 out of 4 Indians retiring over the next 18 months are falling short of adequate health insurance coverage and intend to increase the coverage amount. The rising cost of hospitalisation seems to be a trigger for the increased awareness among retirees.

The study by Bajaj Capital was conducted across metros and non-metro in India with a sample size of 799 respondents. It targeted males and females in the age group of 55-65 years. The sample was further divided into two groups – existing policyholders and intenders looking to buy/enhance coverage in the next three months.

While 75% respondents reported a lack of adequate coverage for themselves, nearly 39% respondents realised that they do not have any health insurance for their spouses.

During the pandemic, adequate health insurance coverage for all family members is a must to ensure that lifetime savings are not used to meet hospital costs. By paying a fraction of the coverage amount (sum insured), the policyholder makes sure that the insurer bears the hospital cost at the time of hospitalisation.

Vishwajeet Parashar, EVP & chief marketing officer, Bajaj Capital said, "The findings of the survey highlights the fact that medical inflation is becoming a big concern for the retirees, both, who have retired and those who are retiring in the near future. Although there is no fixed rule, based on the city of residence and the type of hospitals in the area where one lives, the amount of coverage may be determined. Keeping the right coverage and buying the right health insurance is the key to keep the savings secure for the retirees."

Some of the other key observations from the survey are as follows:

~47% of retirees feel their insurance policy do not have outpatient department (OPD) cover

~63% of retirees feel that they do not have critical illness cover

~90% of the respondents are thinking of buying top-up plans to enhance coverage.

"Retirees need to have a close look at their health insurance portfolio to make sure that risks on all fronts are covered. There are several insurance companies offering OPD coverage and the option to top-up coverage. Buying a critical illness plan also gives additional financial security at the time of any critical illness," said Parashar.

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