Parenthood comes with additional responsibilities. Financial responsibility being the foremost one, does urge one to be well prepared mentally and physically. Child birth is accompanied by a package of expenses related to maternity healthcare and new-born care. With the increasing rate of inflation in healthcare sector, maternity treatment becomes costlier day by day. The average cost to deliver a baby in hospitals in urban cities is somewhere between Rs 50,000 to Rs 80,000. Also, the cases of caesarean deliveries are fast increasing in India, especially in the metro cities.
And this comes with a cost that can easily burn a big hole in someone’s pocket. This gives enough reasons for new parents to become apprehensive about the new financial responsibilities that come along with the baby.
At this stage in life, pregnancy insurance or maternity mediclaim proves to be that extra care package for you. Having the right maternity insurance coverage can help prevent medical costs from becoming a financial burden on you.
What is Maternity Insurance?
Health insurance is designed to cover expenses related to diseases or accidents. However, maternity, even though it requires hospitalization and expenses can be hefty, does not fall under the scope of normal health insurance. Some Group Health policies covering employees of an organization offer a mediclaim coverage for pregnancy under pregnancy insurance, though it is not sufficient. Thus, there has been a constant demand for maternity insurance coverage as part of one’s financial planning.
Pregnancy insurance is a health insurance plan that is designed to cover maternity and health care costs for expecting mothers and their new-borns. Generally, a maternity benefit or a pregnancy policy is provided as an add-on or additional rider with your existing health insurance policy. Thus, maternity insurance coverage is a health insurance cover with added maternity insurance coverage for normal and caesarean deliveries for babies. It is also known as mediclaim for pregnancy.
This mediclaim policy can also be availed as add-ons with a regular health cover. It comes with a cover for pre and post-hospitalization costs for up to 60 days from the discharge date. It may also include a cover for doctor’s consultation, surgeons’ fees, and anaesthetist consultation room, and nursing costs. The individual may choose a standalone pregnancy policy or take this maternity insurance coverage as an add-on cover by paying an extra premium.
Why Should You Buy a Maternity Insurance policy?
In modern times, all couples need to suitably prepare themselves to bear the financial burden due to parenthood. With medical costs increasing day by day, one needs to be prepared well in advance to deal with expected expenses. Therefore, maternity coverage with your health insurance plan or a Mediclaim for pregnancy becomes essential. This is where Pregnancy Insurance or Maternity Mediclaim proves to be a wise investment. Below are reasons for having a maternity insurance in place:
- Financial Safety - Maternity Insurance coverage acts as security against increasing healthcare costs. It is estimated that the healthcare inflation cost will double up in the next 5 years.
- Maternity Insurance Coverage - It covers your maternity expenses, which are not otherwise covered by normal health care policies. It becomes essential for you to ensure that your health insurance policy comes with a pregnancy insurance cover if you are planning a family.
- Hospital Charges Cover - It provides adequate coverage for nursing and hospital charges during childbirth and delivery. There are heavy costs incurred while getting admitted to specialty maternity nursing homes that offer state-of-the-art medical technology and expensive maternity care. However, with a proper mediclaim for pregnancy with adequate maternity insurance coverage, you need not worry about these expenses.
- Cover for Doctors’ Fees - This pregnancy insurance also covers doctors’ fees, which is also a concern for almost all. Medical professionals charge high fees for consultation and surgery, especially when patients get admitted to a hospital for childbirth, huge expenses are incurred towards doctors’ fees. Maternity insurance coverage provides enough cover for fees paid to gynaecologists, anaesthetists, paediatricians, etc.
- Baby Vaccination Costs Covered – If you have a pregnancy insurance cover, it can cover those costs incurred for the child vaccination during his or her first year. Since vaccinations can be very expensive, this can be of great help when you utilize this mediclaim for pregnancy.
Features & Benefits of a Maternity Insurance Coverage Plan
Ideally, one should seek pregnancy insurance or mediclaim for pregnancy as early as possible as it helps in better planning for an upcoming birth. Bear in mind that, maternity insurance comes with a waiting period, hence, you can’t claim it without serving a pre-defined period.
Features of the Maternity Health Insurance Plan
The features of maternity Insurance include the following:
- Maternity insurance coverage includes delivery expenses. This includes the expenditure related to both normal and caesarean delivery and hospital charges.
- Maternity insurance coverage comes with a waiting period of 2 to 4 years, sometimes, even 9 months, depending upon the insurer and plan. You can avail of maternity benefits once the waiting period is over.
- Maternity health insurance covers pre and post-natal expenses for the child as well as the mother.
- Vaccinations can be very expensive. It also covers the vaccination cost incurred for the child during his/her first year. This coverage for the new-born is provided for first year or as per the norms of the insurer.
- Most Pregnancy insurance cover expenses 30 days before hospitalization as well as up to 60 days post-hospitalization. However, it may from one insurer to another.
- You can choose from a wide list of network or non-network hospitals to avail healthcare services in times of need. All costs related to delivery, doctors’ fees, and hospital expenses will be covered under this pregnancy insurance.
- It also covers preventive healthcare as well as wellness.
- Maternity insurance coverage provides flexibility to select the sum insured. You can choose the sum insured that you want to receive as maternity coverage.
- Maternity health insurance plans offer the cashless facility of medical treatment at their network of authorized hospitals across India.
- In case the policyholder does not raise claims in a certain policy year, insurance companies provide claim-free bonus or NCB i.e., discount on the premium for the next year or increase in the sum insured amount.
Benefits of the Maternity Health Insurance Plan
Maternity insurance comes with the following benefits:
- Extensive Coverage- Maternity insurance plans cover delivery expenses, hospital stay, medicines, ambulance charges, etc. along with maternity health insurance.
- New-born Care and Wellness - These insurance plans may also provide additional coverage for the new-born baby in case of any health complication or when they suffer from any critical illness, as mentioned in the policy.
- Avail Cashless Facility - The policyholder can avail cashless payment facilities in different hospitals across India, which are in the list of insurer’s network hospitals.
- Fast Claims Settlement - Most insurance providers make all efforts to provide swift and hassle-free claim settlement for hospitals that are not covered by their network due to a single point of contact.
- No-Claim Bonus - Many maternity insurance coverage plans by various insurance providers provide the provision of a free 10% bonus on premiums for each claim-free year.
- Tax Benefits - Like regular health insurance, maternity insurance coverage also comes with tax benefits for the policyholder. You can avail of tax savings under Sec 80D of the Indian Income Tax Act.
- Easy Application - Maternity health insurance can be easily secured via a quick and convenient online application at the few clicks.
- Emergencies - Many insurance providers arrange for emergency medical evacuation of the insured at foreign locations or in India through air ambulance.
Best Maternity Health Insurance in India
With maternity insurance coverage becoming a popular choice among the today’s generation, most of the insurance companies have come up with their health insurance packages coupled with maternity benefits. Some companies even provide individual or dedicated maternity health insurance plans whose sole purpose is to provide an extensive maternity cover.
Some of the maternity insurance plans available in the market for convenience and financial security are:
Care Health Insurance Joy Maternity Plan (Formerly Known as Religare Health Insurance’s JOY Maternity Plan)
Care Maternity health insurance plan (Formerly Know as Religare Maternity health insurance plan) is designed to provide coverage for all maternity-related expenses. This plan provides some prominent features like treatments that are cashless in-network hospitals, 100% sum insured, 9 month waiting period, etc. Hospitalization expenses during pregnancy and the post-hospitalization phase are covered by JOY maternity health insurance.
Here are some of the distinct features of the Care Health JOY plan (Formerly Know as Religare JOY plan):
- In-patient cover including pre and post hospitalisation expenses covered for 30 to 60 days respectively
- A waiting period of 9 months for maternity health insurance claims
- New-born baby cover
- Policy available for a long-term of 3 years
- 100% increase in the insured sum with No Claim feature
- Single Private Room with AC facility
- Direct claim settlement
- Lifelong entry age
Max Bupa’s Heartbeat Family Floater
Max Bupa Heartbeat Family Floater is a health insurance policy by Max Bupa Health Insurance. It covers all family members with a maximum of 2 adults and 2 children for medical treatment costs, hospitalization, and day-care procedures. Maternity benefit as a standout feature of this plan can be availed under its Gold and Platinum plan variants, without paying an additional premium.
The features of the plan are:
- Treatment expenses, along with pre and post-operative expenses during hospitalization
- New-born baby cover from the day 1
- Sum insured ranges from Rs 1 lakh to 2 lakh
- Nursing, drugs, and surgical expenses are covered
- Pre-hospitalization expenses for 30 days and post-hospitalization expenses for 60 days are covered
- Doctor’s consultation fees are covered
- Hospital accommodation charges for single private room, OT charges, and intensive care unit (ICU) charges
- Costs incurred on medicines, drugs, and diagnostic tests
- Maternity cover and new-born baby cover for up to 2 deliveries
- Child Vaccination covered in its Platinum Plan
Royal Sundaram’s Lifeline Elite
This is another popular plan offered by Royal Sundaram that provides health insurance for pregnancy with coverage both in India and abroad. The sum insured can be availed as individual and family floater basis, covering spouse and new-born baby. The plan has maternity health insurance offered in 5 categories of sum assured- Rs 25 lakh/30 lakh/50 lakh/1 crore/ 1.5 crore. It covers maternity expenses up to 2 deliveries and provides a myriad of benefits.
It also provides new-born baby cover and vaccination costs for new-born in the first year. It also provides repayment of pre and post-hospitalization expenses up to sum insured for 60 and 180 days, respectively.
Star Health’s Star Wedding Gift Insurance Plan
This maternity health insurance plan is an insurance plan by Star Health that provides adequate maternity insurance coverage for new couples. The policy is available in 2 variants-1 years and 2 years. Besides its illness and accidental insurance cover, its Maternity cover has the following features:
- Child delivery expenses related to normal delivery are covered up to a maximum of Rs 15,000, Rs 20,000 or Rs 25,000 in case of caesarean deliveries, as per plan chosen.
- The plan covers prenatal expenses in the range Rs 1500-Rs 2000 and post-natal expenses in the range Rs 2000 to Rs 4000
- If abnormalities are detected in the fetus, there is reimbursement for up to Rs 1000 in the cost of tests after a waiting period of 27 months
- The new-born baby cover includes hospitalization expenses for the treatment of congenital diseases and is provided for Rs 30,000 for the 1-year plan and Rs. 50,000 in case of a 2-year plan
- The new-born baby cover also covers a lump-sum payment for down’s syndrome and Cerebral palsy in the baby for Rs 60,000 for the 1-year plan and Rs 100,000 for the 2-year plan
- There is also a post-delivery complication cover for the mother in the maternity health insurance plan
Maternity Insurance Comparison Table
Mentioned below are some of the insurance plans with their distinct maternity benefits
Name of the Plan
Sum Insured (Rs)
JOY Maternity Plan
|Care Health Insurance (Formerly Know as Religare Health Insurance)
|| Joy today: 3 years/9 months JoyTomorrow-1/2/3 years, 24 months waiting period.
||-Up to Rs 35,000 for 3 Lac SI
-Up to Rs 50,000 for 5 lakh SI
Heartbeat Family Floater
Max Bupa Health Insurance
Silver Plan-2 to 3
Plan benefits vary as per the plan option
Royal Sundaram Lifeline Elite Plan
|Royal Sundaram Health Insurance
25/30/50/1 crore/1.5 crore
Maternity plan as a Family floater.
| 1/2/3 years
|| Maternity claims after a waiting period of 3 years as per policy document.
Star Wedding Gift Insurance
Star Health Insurance
1 year/2 year
Option1: Rs. 15,000 for normal/Rs. 20,000 for Caesarean.
Option2: Rs. 20,000 for normal/Rs. 25,000 for Caesarean.
See More Plans
Disclaimer: *Paisawiki does not endorse, rate or recommend any particular insurer or insurance product offered by an insurer.
What is Not Covered in Pregnancy Insurance Plan?
Certain provisions are not covered under maternity insurance India plans. Below mentioned are the expenses excluded from the coverage of maternity health insurance plan –
- Doctor’s visits for regular health check-ups are not covered
- Infertility-related expenses and In-vitro fertilization costs are not covered
- Diagnostic tests, doctor's consultation, and follow-ups during nine months of pregnancy are not covered
- Expenses on vitamins or tonics are not covered unless they’re part of the treatment
- Stem cell implantation is not included under pregnancy insurance
- Some pregnancy insurance plans may not include doctor treatments outside India, while some may have these provisions
- Any ailment expense before the waiting period, if mentioned in the plan, will not be covered by pregnancy insurance
Tax Benefits of Pregnancy Insurance Plan
When you opt for Maternity Insurance India coverage, it enables you to avail tax benefits up to a maximum of Rs 25,000 on the premiums you pay towards your health insurance. This tax exemption will be as per prevailing tax laws under the Indian Income Tax Act, 1961.
Steps to Buying Health Insurance for Pregnancy Online
Most of the insurance companies offer provision for you to buy their health and maternity insurance plans online, without stepping out of your comfort zone. The process is simple and easy and requires very little paperwork.
Step 1: Once you have compared various maternity plans from different providers online and decided upon one, you can access the insurer’s website directly.
Step 2: You need to fill in your details like name, age, DOB, contact number and email address and coverage sum that you need.
Step 3: You need to keep the copies of the following documents handy- Aadhaar Card, Birth certificate / Passport/ Driving License, and any Proof of Address like Electricity Bill or Driving License/Medical reports for policyholders over of 45 years/Passport size photographs.
Step 4: Based upon your requirement, you will be provided with a quote for the insurance coverage along with the tenure and premiums.
Step 5: If you agree to the quote, you can go ahead and submit your documents and purchase the policy online using your debit card/credit card/ net banking or other online methods.
How to Compare Maternity Insurance Plans?
You need to plan well and compare options online and insure yourself adequately so that the parenthood experience turns out to be the most memorable one. Thus, couples opting for this policy should fully understand the scope, pricing, and exclusions to get the best deal. Besides, there are several maternity insurance plans available in the market that provide health insurance for pregnant women and offer great maternity benefits.
Some specific criteria that you need to go through to compare plans for pregnancy insurance online before finalizing any product are:
- Maternity Coverage - Check the coverage amount that comes with different plans. Although they cover both normal and caesarean delivery expenses, they often come with some limiting conditions.
- Waiting Period - Maternity insurance plans come with a waiting period of 2-6 years, which can sometimes be as low as 9 months, depending upon the insurer. You cannot avail of the insurance benefits before this period is over.
- Sub-Limits - Various products have sub-limits for maternity insurance plans that range from Rs 15,000 to a maximum of Rs 50,000. You need to check those sub-limits in different plans. The age for the mother may also be subjected to caps.
- Premium Amount - The premium amounts for various maternity health insurance plans generally increase with the age of the mother. Policies with longer maternity waiting period of 4-6 years will have lesser premiums.
- Expenses Covered - You need to carefully go through the various expenses covered by a plan and to what extent are they covered. The exclusions also need to be studied thoroughly to prevent any kind of inadequacy in insurance cover.
List of Top Companies Offering Maternity Insurance in India
Here is a list of top insurance companies that provide innovative products and popular maternity insurance plans:
- ICICI Lombard- ICICI Lombard Ltd is a renowned general insurance company in India. It deals in general insurance, reinsurance, insurance claims management, and investment management. ICICI Lombard has always come up with customized insurance products crafted to match your specific needs. They also provide add-on covers to boost policy coverages. Today, they have launched the best medical insurance plans for individuals, families, and senior citizens. Their Mediclaim policy offers comprehensive coverage with tax benefits as well for the policyholders.
- Max Bupa- Max Bupa Health Insurance Company is an insurance company based in New Delhi, India. Max Bupa has come up with innovative health insurance options, like insurance top-ups, tax saver plans, cashless approval in 30 min plans, maternity Cover, refill benefits, and personalized health coach with lifetime discounts. Max Bupa provides a hassle-free experience to all its customers with a fast and direct claim settlement.
- Religare- Religare Enterprises Ltd. is an Indian SME focused Non-Banking Financial Corporation that operates in the lending, health insurance, and retail broking section. They are a diversified financial services group and pioneer in the health insurance sector. Religare Health Insurance is a part of Religare Enterprises Ltd. It is a diversified health insurance company committed to helping people to live happy and healthy lives. They have a vast range of health care plans with Joy as their innovative product.
- Royal Sundaram- Royal Sundaram General Insurance Co. Ltd. it is a subsidiary of Sundaram Finance Group. It is the first private sector general insurance company in India. The company offers comprehensive health insurance packages. These packages are not only affordable but also come along with a vast range of benefits. They provide different sum insured options and are customized as per customer’s needs.
- Star Health- Star Health and Allied Insurance Co Ltd is India's first stand-alone Health Insurance Company that commenced its operations in 2006. It has successfully carved its niche in the markets of health insurance, personal accident insurance, and overseas Mediclaim policy. They offer a vast range of health insurance plans. Star Comprehensive Insurance Policy is a specialized product brought to you by Star Health. As the name suggests, it is a comprehensive plan that provides a wide range of coverage features for you and your family with unique benefits for moms-to-be. The plan covers maternity and new-born baby expenses and is a must-have for new couples.
- Bharati AXA- Bharti Axa General Insurance Company Ltd. is a joint venture between Bharti Enterprises and Axa Business Group in India that came into existence in 2008. Bharti Enterprises is one of India's leading business groups with interests in telecom, business, financial services, retail, and manufacturing. The AXA Group offers insurance, savings, and investment products and services. They have a wide range of Bharti AXA health insurance plans to safeguard the health of your loved ones. The company has been recognized and awarded in the industry for its efforts.
Maternity Plans with Lowest Premium
Your premium for a maternity health insurance plan will depend on specific parameters. These include factors like the sum insured, location, age, and the insurance company that you choose, etc. You can compare options available online on various insurance sites to find the most suitable plan for you.
Here is a table representing some maternity insurance plans with their premium amounts.
Premium Amount( for a 25-year-old)
MaxBupa Heartbeat Family Floater
Starts at Rs.5333 for an Rs. 2 lakh sum assured
Religare Joy Tomorrow
Star Health Wedding Gift
Royal Sundaram Lifeline Elite
*Note: Premiums can vary depending upon factors like age of the policyholder, his location, and prevailing taxes/GST.
Maternity Insurance FAQs
Ans: You need to purchase a pregnancy insurance plan way before you are pregnant or planning a family. Most of these plans are accompanied by a waiting period for availing the benefits that ranges from between 9 months to 6 years. This means that you would be eligible for availing of the benefits of the plan only after the completion of the waiting period mentioned in the maternity health insurance policy. Therefore, even though you can buy a maternity insurance policy, you may not be able to avail of the benefits of the plan due to the waiting period.
Ans: You must inform the company at least 48-72 hours before the admission in case of planned hospitalization to get reimbursement for the treatment. This will be mentioned in the policy document.
Ans: Most insurers regard pregnancy as a pre-existing condition. They may not consider your application if you are already pregnant unless you are covered by a group policy. The pregnancy covered in the mediclaim policy is only available if the delivery happens after the waiting period mentioned in the plan.
Ans: If your new-born has some abnormality, deformity, disease, illness, or injury, it will be considered as a congenital condition. The coverage for such deformity as a result of pregnancy covered in mediclaim depends on the insurance company and varies from all to none to partial. Some companies do consider coverage for Cerebral Palsy and Down’s syndrome, for ex: Star Health.
Ans: All insurance companies lay down specific criteria for the applicant to be eligible to buy the policy. These conditions of eligibility will be mentioned in the insurance brochure. If you meet those criteria, you can go ahead and buy the policy from that insurer.
Ans: A maternity insurance can be claimed as cashless and reimbursement claim:
- i) Cashless claims are to be availed at any of the network hospitals of your insurance provider
- Submit the pre-authorisation form duly signed by the treating doctor along with the required IDs
- The TPA or hospital authority will submit the form to insurance company seeking permission for cashless facility
- Upon approval from the insurer, the services can be availed free of cost. The insurer will pay your hospital directly as per your sum insured
- ii) Claim Reimbursement at the non-network hospitals:
- Submit the filled-up claim form post-hospitalization to your insurance company
- You need to submit receipts and bills of reports and medical treatment
- Your insurance company will reimburse you as per your eligible sum insured if your claim is approved once it is verified
Written By: Paisawiki - Updated: 24 March 2021