IRDAI Releases Circular Mandating Insurers to Offer Health Insurance Cover For Persons with Mental Illnesses, Disabilities, HIV

In a circular dated February 27, 2023, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has mandated all general insurers and stand-alone health insurers to make available a product that offers health insurance coverage for the vulnerable sections of society which include persons with mental illnesses, Persons with Disabilities (PWD), and those afflicted with HIV/AIDS.

As per the circular (which is to come into force with immediate effect), every such insurer holding a certificate of registration to transact general and/ or health insurance business has to promptly come up with the said product without any delay.

The following guidelines have to be taken into consideration before the said product is launched: –

  • The insurers have to abide by the minimum scope and parameters for the design of the product, although the insurers may widen its scope.
  • A board-approved underwriting policy has to be implemented to ensure that no application from any one of the aforementioned demographic categories will be rejected due to such disability or illness.
  • The insurers must comply with the IRDAI (Health Insurance) Regulations, 2016 while determining the price of the product. Further, the Standard Product must also be in conformity with said regulations.
  • The policy tenure for the product should be for a duration of one year, which is renewable in accordance with the already established regulatory framework.