No noticeable change in insurance coverage in country during COVID-19 pandemic: Govt

The government has said there has been no noticeable change in insurance coverage in the country during the COVID-19 pandemic. Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar told Lok Sabha that the number of lives covered under health insurance (excluding personal accident and travel business) from April 1 to December 31, 2020 was 38.79 crore as compared to 39.06 crore for the corresponding period the previous year.

She said the total number of health insurance coverage, excluding personal accident and travel, in financial year 2019-20 was 49.87 crore. This is inclusive of government-sponsored health insurance schemes including group health and individual health insurance. She said ‘There has been no noticeable change in insurance coverage during COVID-19 pandemic’.

On whether the premium for health insurance during the pandemic increased multifold, Pawar said the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) issued a press statement on December 3, 2020 that insurers were permitted to revise the base premium upto 5 per cent of originally approved rates. Insurers, as part of periodical modification of their respective products, effect revision in health insurance premium rates based on the incurred claims experience to ensure viability and sustainability of products they offer.