NHRC wants Irdai to make sure insurers offer healthcare products to the disabled with ease

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has called on the Idrai insurance regulator to get insurance companies to follow the spirit of state law to ensure disabled people easily obtain health insurance by developing special products for them.

A panel meeting of representatives from the NHRC, Irdai, the National Center for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People and some key Treasury Department officials on Friday called for the rationalization and institutionalization of disability insurance. Disability organizations have long pushed for comprehensive health insurance for the disabled.

According to Delhi High Court guidelines of December 2022, Irdai in February 2023 required insurers to offer annual health insurance to disabled, HIV-positive and mentally challenged people.

The regulator had also instructed insurers to develop comprehensive insurance products that comply with the essential recommendations for disabled people.

However, contrary to the legal framework, insurers restrict insurance cover to persons with a specific disability. Even their websites, apps, and claims processes do not meet the accessibility standards of the RPWD Act of 2016.

According to disability associations, the main problem is that insurance policies do not adequately cover the costs of assistive technology, such as purchasing, maintaining, repairing or replacing it.

DM Mulay, a member of the NHRC, said at the meeting that there was a consensus among the participants to develop special insurance products for the disabled in order for the country to be on par with developed countries that have standardized insurance modules and a mechanism to create for dealing with concerns and complaints from disabled people.

“There is an urgent need to provide social and financial empowerment for the disabled to ensure our society thrives,” said Mulay, assisted by Mandakini Balodhi, director of insurance at the Treasury; Rajeev Sharma, Deputy Secretary at the Ministry of Social Justice; and Vipin Kumar Singh, Director of the National Health Authority.

According to Arman Ali, an executive director of the National Center for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People, there is a massive lack of awareness in the country when it comes to health insurance for the disabled, as the country’s still lack of comprehensive health insurance points to glaring points Gaps in the inclusion of people with disabilities in our healthcare system.

Despite the principles of equality and non-discrimination set out in the RPWD Act 2016, disabled people face discrimination in health insurance.

Gaps in current health insurance coverage for the disabled include denial of coverage, inconsistent testing requirements and limited coverage for their specific needs, he said, stressing that regulations are needed to ensure affordable and comprehensive access to assistive products and services.

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https://www.zeebiz.com/personal-finance/insurance/news-nhrc-wants-irdai-to-ensure-insurers-offer-hassle-free-health-products-to-the-disabled-250687 NHRC wants Irdai to make sure insurers offer healthcare products to the disabled with ease

Russell Falcon

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