Insurance coverage in Kenya has evolved as a means of safeguarding the interests of people from loss and uncertainty.
The expenses incurred after an accident, the death of a loved one, or a disability in many instances exceeds any savings or wealth that you may have accumulated. It is for this reason that the importance of medical insurance cannot be understated.
Health insurance is a type of insurance that covers medical expenses of an insured person’s illnesses, injuries, conditions and sometimes funeral expenses.
Health insurance can reimburse the insured for expenses incurred from illness or injury or pay the care provider directly.
Benefits of a good insurance cover
1. Financial security
Even if you are in good health, you never know when you might have an accident or get sick.
Having to pay huge medical bills out-of-pocket can set you back financially.
Medical insurance maintains your standards of living by rescuing you in your hour of need when you are rendered destitute in the event of a medical emergency.
Private insurance allows you to have a wider range of choices regarding when and where you receive your medical care.
This is unlike in the government sponsored health scheme where patients are required to select from a panel of specific hospitals regardless of whether these facilities meet their needs.
3. Early detection of diseases
Many health covers provide for medical checkups and screening thereby enhancing the possibility of detection of diseases and conditions well in advance.
Failure to take out a medical insurance policy lowers your chances of preventive medical care and greater probability of serious health implications including death.
4. Peace of mind
Most insurance covers offer final benefits in case the insured person dies. This helps in settling expenses towards their funeral and relieves the bereaved family financial burden in their time of sorrow.
5. Personalized care
Private medical insurance companies are determined to keep your business and thus offer a more personalized and customer-friendly experience.
You will likely have more time to talk to your physicians, less time spent in waiting rooms, and even a specialist team assigned to your case in the event of any medical complications.
6. Specialized treatment
If you are uninsured and suffer from a pre-existing condition, you are less likely to schedule regular visits with your doctor.
You may also not have access to the best and newest medical procedures either locally or abroad unlike an insured person.
As a result of deferred medical treatment, people who lack cover often miss more time from work when they are ill or injured and may retire sooner because of poor health.
7. Higher standards of care
Uninsured people have to contend with government sponsored hospitals which may sometimes lack medicines, proper staffing or facilities.
However, patients who are covered can access private hospitals which are cleaner, well stocked and better staffed.
People with private medical insurance who receive treatment in private clinics and hospitals enjoy benefits such as private rooms, en suite bathrooms, less restricted visiting hours and a proper diet.
In addition, private clinics and hospitals are usually cleaner, which lowers the risk of infection and other complications.
8. Reduced waiting time
Uninsured patients have to contend with waiting for specialist appointments and treatments in government hospitals, even if they are faced with serious conditions such as cancer.
Patients who are covered under any medical insurance can get care where it is readily available and thus reduce or even eliminate wait times.
9. Third party authorization
It is possible for a third party like a nanny or relative to authorize treatment of dependants of the insured, in case the principal member is unavailable.
This is done through the biometric system
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Are you or someone you know planning on travelling for medical treatment in India (or any other country overseas) for a chronic disease e.g. cancer, knee or hip replacement, liver or kidney transplant; wellness checkup or to improve your form, shape or appearance through cosmetic procedures or reconstructive surgery?
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