Wednesday, April 20, 2016
MEDICLAIM - PREMIUM HIKE
The hike in the Mediclaim premium has come as a shocker. For those in the age brackets 75 and above, the increase is almost 50% over last years premium. To cite my own example, for a coverage of 20,00,000 for me and my wife, I paid a premium of a little less than Rs.12000/- for the Year 2015-2016. For the same coverage, for the year 2016-2017, according to the new rates, it works out to almost Rs.18000 (approximately). If I opt for a higher coverage of 30,00,000, the premium for both will be Rs.24,000/-.
In these days of low inflation, the increase in DR during a year may not go beyond Rs.2000/- to Rs.3000/- (post August 1997 retirees). Should this trend continue in the coming years, for the reasons best known to New India Assurance and LIC, every succeeding year we will find a huge reduction in the net pension. One can very well imagine the plight of those who unfortunately live beyond 80 or 85. The cost of medicines going up from year to year is another story.
Both in-service employees and pensioners should take up this issue with LIC with the immediacy it deserves and the threshold for subsidy should be raised considerably from the present limit of 6,00,000. We should also find out the reason for their steep increase; is it the heightened claim experience or some other factor? Is it not a solid reason for us to insist on pension revision?