Insurers to accommodate mental health in policies

Increasing understanding and evolving legislation about mental health issues are being reflected in insurance

Insurers to accommodate mental health in policies

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

As the Parliament of India passed the Mental Healthcare Bill that decriminalises suicide, insurers are looking to release new products or include causes in their policies to cover hospitalisation expenses stemming from a suicide attempt.
Insurers are currently deliberating on how to include the clause in their policies so that claims cannot be denied. However, one downside would be that expenses will only be covered once.
Previously, injuries sustained from a suicide attempt were denied by insurers as it was considered an illegal activity.

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Across the corporate landscape, firms are gradually becoming more understanding about their employees’ mental health needs. This shift includes insurance coverage for anti-depression medication and therapy.
According to Sanjay Kedia, country head and CEO of Marsh India Insurance Brokers, many companies, especially in the IT sector, have corporate group insurance that covers mental health, including in-patient and out-patient psychiatric interventions. Autism for child dependents of employees is also covered.
“Many times, a person does not know that the stress or anxiety that they are facing is a mental illness or depression related. This is why the overall number of claims coming in from mental health related treatments is also low,” Kedia told financial portal Moneycontrol.

In order to care for employees’ mental health, several IT and financial companies, with support from their insurers, are holding stress management workshops, yoga and meditation sessions, as well as general counselling services for anxiety.

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