The economic slowdown and a lack of government driven plans in India have arrested the growth of health insurance premiums by 25 percent during the fiscal 2011-12.
In sharp contrast, the last fiscal 2010-11, registered a growth of 35 percent in premiums, amounting to an estimated total of Rs 13,000 crore, says a report by hindustantimes.com.
The loss on premium growth can still be minimized, say health insurance companies, as they are hoping that consumers would buy their products to save taxes.
According to the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) less than 15 percent of the population is under health insurance cover of any kind. In a health insurance meet last year, FICCI said, 'efficient and effective health insurance delivery has always been a challenge in evolving markets.'
A National Sample Survey Organisation data suggests that about 65 percent of the country's poor get into debt and 1 percent fall below the poverty level each year because of the health issues.
About Rs 6,000 crore worth of health insurance business in the country is managed by Insurers from the public sector National Insurance Company, New India Assurance, Oriental Insurance and United India Insurance.