In a “low loss rate” Kol, Med Insurance should be cheaper | Kolkata News

Kolkata: Residents of Kolkata will soon have to pay a lower health insurance premium than those staying in other metros like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
Several health and general insurance companies are offering a system where different areas and areas will have different premiums following the deregulation of the industry by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority. A city or area with a lower “loss ratio” (actual claims against each Rs 100 paid as premium) will now pay a lower premium if other factors (like policy type and age group of the insured) remain the same.
Kolkata had a much lower loss ratio than Mumbai, the national capital region and even Gujarat, National Insurance Company chief executive Ashok Kumar Lahoty told TOI. “The wastage rate in Zone 1, which includes Gujarat, is the highest at 92% for some of our products. Zone 3 (where Kolkata is located) has a wastage rate of 80% to 82%,” he added.
An insurance adjuster explained that the loss ratio also depends on factors such as the cost of real estate, as these tend to drive up room rentals, the cost of labor and the number hospitals willing to accept flat rates from insurance companies. In the case of public sector companies, there is a network of preferred providers made up of hospitals that accept flat rates.
Places in Zones 1 and 2 have consistently shown adverse experience, with a loss ratio that is 1.5 times that of the rest of India, say insurance company seniors. Gujarat is in zone 1 for NIC; Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad and Indore are in Zone 2 and the rest of India including Kolkata is in Zone 3.
“We have launched the National Young India Mediclaim Policy with new features for young people to further reduce loss ratios. We will have premium rates by zone with Kolkata being among the zones that will have to pay the lowest amount,” Lahoty said.
Underwriting and Claims Manager ICICI Lombard Sanjay Datta told TOI that the private sector insurer is also planning to introduce more zone policies. “We already have products like this and there will be more products related to loss ratios and zones in the future,” he added.
ManipalCigna’s head of health insurance products, Ashis Yadav, also said his company would embark on “more innovation” in line with new IRDA guidelines; they would include “geographic base pricing”. Mumbai, Thane, NCR and Gujarat were in Zone 1 for his business; Kolkata was in Zone 2 along with Chennai, Hyderabad and Pune.
ManipalCigna MD and CEO Prasun Sikdar said some of the innovations included OPD’s fee offering and 100% claims settlement.
Box
# Kolkata has a lower loss ratio (claim per premium of Rs 100 paid) compared to Mumbai, Delhi, Gujarat, Hyderabad and some other major cities
# The loss rate here is almost 10% less than some in the upper bracket
# Insurance companies offering products with geographic pricing
# The premium in Kolkata for the same sum insured in one age group could be 5-10% lower than some metro peers
# Insurance companies are also introducing special wellness premium discounts

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Sallie R. Loera