What are Lifestyle Diseases?
These non-communicable diseases are caused by one’s way of living. Toxic lifestyles include the active indulgence in work that causes stress, deleterious eating patterns, and the absence of routine physical activities. Environments further deteriorate when it leads to the worsening of one’s habits, and involves drug and alcohol abuse. Overall prolonged exposure to poor behaviors contributes to the total number of annual chronic disease reports. The most common chronic disease reports consist of obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and some variations of cancer.
The Economic Impact of Lifestyle Diseases
In 2005, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the necessary evaluation of lifestyle diseases globally. According to the WHO, African and Eastern Mediterranean regions suffer from increased exposure to such diseases, and immediate prevention measures are a must to mitigate the potential crises.
The WHO also iterated that 61% of total annual deaths are directly attributable to virulent daily activities. In a final statement, the WHO stated that they firmly reckon that 80% of these aggregated diseases can be annihilated if accommodations are made for weight maintenance, regular exercise, and a good diet in every individual’s life.
The lack of population control in India has initiated several research studies concentrating on disease burden and prevention rates within the past decade. According to the Indian Council of Medical Research, 2017 raised alarms with regards to the overwhelming increment in lifestyle disease reports. This study highlighted that three out of five disease reports in India were concerned with one’s daily activities.
Diabetes, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and ischaemic heart disease were categorized as the most reported in India. To compound the situation, the Harvard School of Public Health released data that predicts the economic burden in India will worsen with the passage of time because of decaying health habits, and could eventually cost India $6.2 trillion by the end of 2030.
In China, the repercussions of an unhealthy lifestyle paint a grim picture. By the end of 2030, the study delineates that a loss of $27.3 trillion will exist, placing additional debt in the country’s monetary system. The massive contrast between India and China primarily stems from the large octogenarian population in China.
Papering over Cracks: The Benefits of Health Insurance
Let’s start with the benefits of health insurance, other than an overall lifestyle change, investing in good health insurance coverage is imperative to intercept the escalation of lifestyle-related disease rates. It has been observed that in most cases, many insurances remain underutilized because of the lack of knowledge surrounding the spectrum of their benefits amongst policyholders.
Recognizing the significant nature of enveloping health insurance worldwide, many countries have deemed the application of health cards to be essential. Some of the various securities provided by health card applications are as follows:
- Domiciliary Care
The onset of the Coronavirus pandemic has resulted in many citizens opting for at-home treatments or telemedicine facilities. Certain health insurance policies provide coverage for this kind of service. However, the advent of this pandemic has brought about more stringent policies that limit the coverage provided to avail such services. Max Bupa Heartbeat Silver Policy, for example, accounts for coverage limited to Rs. 15,000.
- Recuperation Aid
Preventative measures that are related to convalescence are also sometimes covered by health cards. If a lump sum is paid, supplementary expenses stemming from the privation of income such as that of hospitalization and additional recovery expenditure is also covered for a few days.
- Taxation Deductions
The 2018 budget has altered tax laws with regards to healthcare in India. Section 80D asserts the following:
|Particulars||Paid Premium for Individual and Family members||Paid Premium for Parents||Deduction Provision|
|Below 60 years of age||Rs. 25,000||Rs. 25,000||Rs. 50,000|
|Above 60 years of age||Rs. 50,000||Rs. 50,000||Rs. 1,00,000|
|Below 60 years of age aided by parents above 60 years of age||Rs. 25,000||Rs. 50,000||Rs. 75,000|
|A non-resident of any age||Rs. 25,000||Rs. 25,000||Rs. 25,000|
Necessary health checkups are also covered by health insurance and are the main reason they are considered for investment. Sometimes, depending on the extent of coverage, free health checkups and dental treatments are covered in health policies.
This also reduces the need to carry around physical monetary assets to visit the hospital. Dental coverage usually requires potent coverage and additional health card investment, but the benefits derived from it outweigh the feeling of a light pocket.
Other than investing in a health insurance policy, you can also opt for the Bajaj Finserv Digital Health EMI Network Card, which allows you to pay for your hospitalization, medical and diagnostic bills in easy EMIs. The card comes with a pre-approved limit of up to Rs. 4 lakh and lets you repay the amount in monthly installments.