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Basics of Hospital Expense Insurance

By Jakob Jelling

Hospital expense insurance covers the expenses incurred on a patient's hospital stay, provided he/she already has a subscription in this regard.

Nobody has ever lived a life time without a bout of illness and a subsequent hospital stay. This is something inevitable as no one is perfectly immune to diseases. And every hospital stay one has brings with the discharge order a mind boggling bill - the psychological effect of which is more than enough to send back the fitness-regained patient for another few days for treatment in the same hospital. When it comes to health related issues, no one could keep a check on the cash flow. After all, in such circumstances, it is the question of life and health that supersedes the financial issue. But with hospital expense insurance, one could reclaim the money spent by producing all the relevant certificates and bill.

Hospital expense insurance is one form of the health insurance that pays for the expenses incurred for the patient's room and board costs. The coverage also compensates financially for incidental expenses such as x-rays, the use of the operating room, anesthesia, drugs and laboratory charges. When it comes to payment, some insurance providers prefer to pay the claim on an indemnity style where the insurer pays a definite sum each day for a set maximum number of days. Some players, on the other hand, opt to pay the actual bill or a percentage of the actual amount regardless of what the amount the bill indicates.

Generally, at the time of the payment, the insured is paid a claim that amounts to a fixed percentage of the policy amount minus the deductibles. Various hospital expense insurance policies follow different schemes and hence the payable amount varies a lot. The customer should ideally see if the "stop-loss" or "coinsurance maximum," which limits the insured person's liability is at an acceptable limit. A decently followed scheme does not put much burden on the customer. Also look for those insurance providers who offer a maximum benefit ceiling.

Practically, there are a large number of hospital expense insurance policies which are rejected on technical grounds. The reality is that, for the insurance firms, their aim is to make profits and by denying one a hospital expense insurance policy claim, actually the company is gaining profits in larger numbers. Inadequacy or discrepancy in the information provided by the customer is one of the grounds in which they deny a policy. Hence, the customer should ensure that he/she provides the correct and updated information to the insurance companies.

Also, the customer must be thorough with the rules and regulations that define the hospital expense insurance policy. See to it that all relevant documents and papers are in place. Remember, a missed piece of document is a valid ground for refusal of a claim.

Before buying any hospital expense insurance policy, the customer ideally should be doing a bit of research on the insurance scene of his/her place of stay. One can go by references if you have any trusted friend or you know anybody who have had successfully claimed the hospital expense insurance. In this regard, browsing the insurance company's home sites facilitates for an easy comparison of similar policies and their rates.

To conclude, how much the customer may need to shell out along side the claim amount so as to pay the hospital expense directly depends upon the hospital expense insurance policy he/she selected. And that requires a good application of discerning senses and yes, a bit of common sense as well.

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