Which Health Insurance Covers Cancer?

‘Cancer’, the word itself, arouses fear and anxiety. It is one of India’s leading causes of death, and its incidence is increasing rapidly. Did you know, every year, more than 1 million Indians are diagnosed with some form of cancer?

Due to the lack of awareness and the costly healthcare and diagnosis facilities, many of these cases are diagnosed late. This further results in an alarming rise in the number of cancer patients in India. While there are no certain ways to avert this deadly disease, being under the coverage of appropriate health insurance can come with a number of benefits.

Regular health insurance and cancer coverage

Conventional health plans normally cover expenses for hospitalisation and a few days of pre and post-hospitalisation. This is where they may be inadequate for treating serious ailments such as cancer. The treatment can extend for several years and require many non-hospital expenditures, which are far beyond what a regular health plan would provide. A cancer-specific health insurance policy can be a lifesaver in the event of being diagnosed with any kind of cancer, at any stage. The policy pays out a lump sum amount which can be used for hospitalisation, long-term treatment, medicines, follow-ups, or maintaining personal finances.

Importance of cancer insurance

Investing in a cancer insurance policy provides financial security for both the policyholder and their loved ones in the event of a cancer diagnosis. Cancer is a critical illness that can cause emotional distress and financial burdens. A cancer insurance policy can help alleviate these burdens by providing financial assistance when needed.

The cost of cancer treatment is usually high, and not everyone may be able to afford it. A cancer insurance policy helps individuals pay for their medical expenses, including hospitalisation, medications, regular follow-ups, chemotherapy, and other necessary treatments. Having insurance can help reduce stress levels and allow individuals to focus on their treatment and recovery without worrying about their finances.

Choosing the right cancer coverage

Investing in cancer insurance should be a priority for everyone since cancer can affect anyone, regardless of age or lifestyle. Therefore, in today’s world, purchasing a critical illness policy such as cancer insurance is a must. However, it is equally important to choose the right policy that aligns with your needs, so you can benefit from it when the need arises. Here are a few factors to consider when purchasing a cancer insurance policy:

Understand the type of policy and coverage

To obtain coverage for cancer, you can choose from different insurance policies, such as an exclusive cancer insurance policy or a cancer cover add-on with a basic health insurance policy. It’s important to select the right type of policy that matches your individual needs to maximise insurance benefits.

  • Tip: Make sure to check that the policy covers all stages of cancer, including pre-cancer, early stage, and major stage, as payouts may vary depending on the stage.

Choose the right insurer

Selecting the right insurer is crucial to ensure a seamless purchasing and claim settlement experience. It’s recommended to review the claim settlement ratio, online ratings, customer support, etc., of an insurance company before deciding on one.

Waiting and survival period

Health insurance plans that cover cancer comes with both a waiting period and a survival period. During the waiting period, you cannot make claims for medical expenses related to cancer. On the other hand, the survival period is the duration for which the policyholder must survive from the time of cancer diagnosis to qualify for a settlement. Opting for a policy with a shorter waiting and survival period will ensure that your coverage starts as early as possible and you receive the sum assured.

Read the fine print

It is always important to read the fine print in the health insurance policy documents to understand all the inclusions and exclusions of a policy. Thus, make sure to go through the document.

  • Tip: Take the help of an insurance expert to understand the jargon in the policy document.

Coverage for different stages of the cover

Before choosing a cancer insurance policy, it’s essential to verify the coverage offered for different stages of cancer. Many policies offer 100% payout for the major stage of cancer, while for pre-cancer, a certain percentage of the sum assured is paid out.


Having health insurance is a critical component of any individual’s financial security, especially when it comes to covering cancer treatments. Recent studies have highlighted the importance of having adequate coverage for medical expenses associated with cancers and other serious illnesses. It is important to ensure that your health insurance policy covers cancer-related treatments, if not you can opt for one today.


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