I compare the features of Apollo Munich Optima Restore Benefit and Max Bupa Health Companion Re-fill Benefit. This is the second module of step 4, ₹e-Assemble, “how to choose a suitable health insurance policy”. The main idea is to highlight the importance of reading policy wordings.
We will compare two key features: the no claim benefit in Apollo Munich vs the no-claim bonus in Max Bupa and the restore vs re-fill features. Although I maintain such features are only fringe benefits, many are attracted to these. Therefore it is important to dig deeper and understand them. As my teacher Prof. V. Balakrishnan used to say, “put pen to paper”, then all will become clear … soon.
Health insurers generally reward the insured if there is no claim, but these are subject to limitations. For example, United India offers a 3% no claim discount in the premium after 3-claim free years and for every claim-free thereon subject to a maximum of 15% discount. This may seem pretty lacklustre compared to the privates that offer benefits for each claim free year. However, a no-claim discount is an actual reduction in costs whereas a no-claim bonus leading to a higher sum insured is notional – applicable only if there is a claim and if it exceeds the basic sum insured.
I would recommend first completing part A: ₹e-Assemble step 4: How to choose a suitable health insurance policy before going forward.
Apollo Munich Multiplier Benefit vs Max Bupa no-claim discount
Apollo Munich has a unique multiplier bonus schedule that offers 50% of the sum insured (SI) as a bonus for every claim free year, subject to a ceiling of 100% of the SI. However, if there is a claim, the bonus will be removed as fast as it was offered (see video)!!
Max Bupa, on the other hand, offers a lower (20%) bonus, but as explained below, the bonus is not removed if there is a claim.
Apollo Munich Optima Restore vs Max Bupa re-fill benefit
In Apollo Munich Optima restore, the insurance cover will be “restored” upon a claim to an amount equal to the base SI. However, the restore option will kick in only when the entire sum insured and multiplier bonus is exhausted.
On the other hand, Max Bupa Re-fill benefit refers to an additional amount added to the sum insured after a claim that completely or partially exhausts the SI+bobus. The re-fill amount cannot exceed the SI.
For both policies, the additional cover will come into play only after a claim and will be in force only during a policy year. Also, the same individual cannot get treated with the restore or re-fill cover for the same illness (or related condition) in the same policy year.
Considering that Max Bupa no-claim bonuses are sticky (that is no removal upon a claim) and considering that the re-fill option is applicable for partial exhaustion of SI+bonus, I think Max Bupa has the edge. This is only wrt to these features and only between these two insurers.
Apollo Munich Optima Restore Benefit vs Max Bupa Re-fill Benefit
It is “re-fill” and not “ref-fill”. Apologies for the typo. Let me know if I have understood some aspect incorrectly.
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