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Can Health Insurance Help with Epilepsy Treatment?

About 1% of the Indian population has epilepsy, states a study conducted by The NCBI. It means that more than 1 Crore Indians have epilepsy. The study also shows that the prevalence of epilepsy is more in rural areas than urban.

3 min read

May 29, 2024

OneAssure

Causes of Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a disorder of the brain in which a person has frequent seizures. While the cause of the seizures remains unknown, it may be due to genetic reasons or trauma to the brain tissue. Stroke in adults who are over 35 years of age is a major cause of epilepsy. Other causes are AIDS, Meningitis and viral encephalitis.

Symptoms

Epilepsy patients may exhibit symptoms like 

  • Uncontainable jerking movements of the legs and arms,

  • High fever,

  • Temporary confusion, 

  • Being unaware of the surroundings, 

  • Anxiety,

  • Feeling of deja vu are also seen sometimes, 

  • Fainting and losing consciousness after seizures may also be observed.

Diagnosis

Epilepsy can be hard to diagnose as the symptoms overlap with other conditions like migraines etc. Therefore, the practitioner may suggest a brain scan, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or electroencephalogram (EEG). In some cases, magnetic encephalography or MEG may be employed.

Treatment

Antiepileptic drugs are a common effective form of treatment. In some cases, surgical removal of some problematic parts of the brain may be advised. In others, a small electrical device that can control seizures is inserted. The ketogenic diet is also recommended as it is known to control seizures.

Costs

Epilepsy is a chronic, i.e. long-lasting illness. Therefore, the cost of treatment can be on the higher side for a sustained amount of time. But, surgical intervention may be the costliest option of treatment.

IRDAI Mandate

The IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) has been working towards ensuring mental health insurance coverage in India.

Over the last few years, the IRDAI has been issuing circulars regarding insurance for mental health. These circulars have been sent to all insurers in India regarding mental health insurance.

The IRDAI has mandated that mental illnesses be covered on the same grounds as physical illnesses. It has forbidden insurers from including mental illnesses in the exclusions list. For general health indemnity insurance, treatments for mental and physical ailments are at par.

However, epilepsy is still allowed to be on the exclusions list. It means that policies may exclude covering epilepsy. 

Health Insurance for Epilepsy

Specialised health insurance plans are available for psychological disorders like epilepsy. However, very few insurers currently cover epilepsy. 

Want to know which insurer covers epilepsy? Continue reading.

Bajaj Finserv Epilepsy Care Plan

This plan has two variants: essential and classic. The plan covers lab tests, radiology, doctors consultation and OPD or Outpatient Department. Treatments under OPD are also called daycare treatments. That’s because the patient does not need to be hospitalised. Instead, the patient may walk in, undergo the treatment and leave within the same day. 

Besides these benefits, the plan also offers discounts on the Bajaj Finserv Health Prime Network.

Health Insurance Can Help

The diagnostic tests for epilepsy can be quite costly. The treatments span the whole spectrum of medicines, daycare procedures, surgeries and consultations. All or some of these may be required from time to time. Covering these expenses with specialised health insurance is a sound idea.

Read more about Why is it Difficult to Cover Mental Health with Health Insurance?

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