Each health insurance plan available in the market has its own set of specifications, limitations, inclusions and exclusions. While an ordinary health insurance plan provides coverage for most of the healthcare related expenses, it might prove to be inadequate and fail to cover the prolonged and recurring costs associated with the treatment of critical ailments.

This is where a critical illness health insurance policy comes to your rescue. Let us discuss which health issues are tagged ‘critical’ under health insurance.

Common inclusions of critical illness health insurance

Although each insurance company has its own unique list of critical illness, yet there are certain health conditions which are unanimously regarded as ‘critical ailments requiring critical care’. The following is a list of critical health conditions that are covered by critical illness insurance plans:

Kidney failures:

According to the Indian Society of Nephrology (ISN)[1], almost 1,75,000 people are diagnosed with End Stage Kidney Diseases (ESKD) every year in India. Hypertension, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, urinary tract infections etc., are the most common causes of kidney failures. Regular dialysis often becomes the sole option to treat this disease, which is quite expensive and exhaust your life’s savings. Hence, this condition is considered as critical illness and covered under critical illness health plans.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)[2], India has almost 14 lakh patients diagnosed with cancer. Breast cancer, oral cancer, cervical cancer and lung cancer together form the majority of cancer patients in the country. Cancer is one of the major causes of death in India. Most cancer patients require prolonged treatment involving enormous financial expenses. Hence, it is prudent to avail a critical insurance plan to meet the spiraling expenses related to cancer treatment.

Cardiovascular diseases:

According to The Lancet Global Health[3], the prevalence of heart-related diseases has increased by 50% since 1990. Myocardial infections and other cardiovascular diseases kill more people than all other diseases combined.

Many of these diseases require expensive surgeries such as Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery, Heart Valve Replacement, Pulmonary Arterial Surgery etc. All these surgeries require financial back-up, which is generally not covered by standalone insurance plans. Thus, critical illness health plans cover cardiovascular diseases.

Other critical health conditions:

There are other major illnesses that need critical medical care. These are as follows:
  • Third-degree burns
  • Aphasia or loss of speech
  • End-stage liver diseases
  • End-stage lung diseases
  • Permanent paralysis
  • Motor neuron ailments
  • Bacterial Meningitis
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Major organ transplantation
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Benign brain tumour
  • Muscular dystrophy

The sedentary lifestyle is becoming more ubiquitous these days. As a result, the number of people falling prey to critical ailments is rising steadily. Critical health insurance plans offer financial help once the insured is diagnosed with such diseases.

Learn more about different Health Insurance Plans here.


The information contained herein is generic in nature and is meant for educational purposes only. Nothing here is to be construed as an investment or financial or taxation advice nor to be considered as an invitation or solicitation or advertisement for any financial product. Readers are advised to exercise discretion and should seek independent professional advice prior to making any investment decision in relation to any financial product. Aditya Birla Capital Group is not liable for any decision arising out of the use of this information.

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