Here's all you need to know about health insurance for smokers

Here's all you need to know about health insurance for smokers  8th February 2023

Tobacco has been killing people for centuries, but people still don't consider it one of the biggest public health dangers the world has ever faced. Smokers are susceptible to various chronic and fatal diseases such as lung cancer, respiratory diseases, asthma, heart diseases and stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and osteoporosis. Moreover, female smokers may also face complications in pregnancy.

Hence, it is imperative that smokers should opt for the best online health insurance to ensure the right coverage during an emergency. Here's all you need to know about health insurance for smokers.

1. Need and importance:
India has a large population of around 120 million people that smokes. Moreover, smoking kills over 8 million people every year. They are also prone to various fatal diseases that need expensive long-term treatment.
Therefore, smokers should opt for a good health insurance policy. It will help them protect their hard-earned money and prepare them financially for the enormous hospital expenses they may incur because of illnesses caused due to their smoking habit.

2. Premium:
Health insurance policies for smokers usually command around 30%-40% higher premiums than other regular health insurance policies. This is because a smoker is more susceptible to diseases and gets hospitalised than a non-smoker. Many risks are involved in providing a health insurance policy to a smoker. Insurance companies offset this risk by charging a higher premium for covering a smoker's health.
The premium also varies according to the number of cigarettes a person smokes in a day or a week. A smoker who smokes more will have to pay a higher premium than a smoker who smokes fewer cigarettes in a day. Also, insurance companies increase the premium on a smoker's policy if he suffers health problems later on due to smoking.

3. Disclosure requirements:
A smoker must disclose his smoking habits and the number of cigarettes he smokes in a day when he buys the health insurance policy. Even if a person smokes just one cigarette daily, he should disclose it to the insurance company. An insurance company can reject the claim on the grounds that vital information relating to health was wilfully non-disclosed at the time of buying the online health insurance policy. They can also declare the policy null and void.
If a person turns a smoker after buying a health insurance policy, he should inform the insurance company about the same. This will make his claim settlement process hassle-free. The insurance company may modify and increase the premium and ask for a medical test too.

4. Benefits:
A health insurance policy for a smoker has numerous advantages. Smokers can need expensive treatments as they can catch diseases fatal to life, such as cancer. The policy will keep them financially protected and cover their hospital bills in such a situation. Moreover, they can enjoy cashless treatment benefits with their policy. Such policies also come with tax benefits on a smoker's premium under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

A health insurance policy should be purchased as a shield by any smoker as there are high chances of them being diagnosed with life-threatening diseases of the lungs, chest, and even cancer at some stage of their life. Smoking kills people, and the policy can provide financial support to smokers in times of medical emergencies.

It is always good for smokers to become aware of the dangers of tobacco and quit smoking. In addition, they should do adequate research and opt for the best online health insurance policy. They should go through minute clauses and details of their policy that may be affected due to their smoking habit. This will ensure financial protection, stability, and hassle-free claim settlement at a later date.

Click HERE to buy an online health insurance policy.

Disclaimer: The information provided above is for illustrative purposes only. To get more details, please refer to policy wordings and prospectus before purchasing a policy.