By Akshay Golechha
It is estimated that 30 million people are living with disabilities in India today. Of these, more than three million are employed, which means that they earn their living in one form or another and not necessarily in the formal sector. The International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) 2022, on December 3, provides us with a unique opportunity to shine a light on the challenges they face and find ways to facilitate and improve their lives.
However, the plight of people with disabilities is not limited to their numbers. According to a recent report from a national sample survey, more than 70% of these people were not born with a disability – they have in fact suffered a partial or permanent disability due to accidents or serious health problems. at different stages of their life. This highlights the need to help them cope with their disability and overcome barriers, and to give them access to equal opportunities both in our society and in the workplace.
Accidents and Disability
Accidents are one of the main contributors to the increase in the incidence of disabilities. Earlier this year, the World Bank said in a report that India accounts for more than 10% of road traffic fatalities globally, the highest rate in the world. However, accidents don’t just happen on the roads. An individual can also be prone to an accident anywhere – in the workplace or in a factory, during an outdoor adventure or in a sporting activity, as well as due to negligence and unforeseen events. . According to the data, most industrial sectors and especially manufacturing, chemical and construction are reporting the peak number of deaths and disabilities in India. In 2021 alone, manufacturing companies recorded an average of seven accidents per month, resulting in the death of more than 162 workers.
How insurance can help you
Considering the growing incidence and disruptive impact it has on everyone, employers in India are tackling this serious problem by taking advantage of available insurance covers – a combination of group insurance cover for health (GH) and group for personal accidents (GPA). This not only protects employees against unexpected medical expenses resulting from a major health condition or accident, but can also help employees protect their savings by providing a lump sum payment in the event of disability. In many cases, coverage is also provided to the employee’s relatives, such as parents, spouse and children, providing a financial umbrella for the whole family.
Why Group Personal Accident Insurance?
While there is a growing awareness of GHI and its benefits, there is an urgent need for the corporate sector to adopt GPA coverage on a large scale to ensure comprehensive coverage for their employees.
The average person today perceives personal accident coverage as simply “traffic accident coverage,” since the typical retail personal accident product primarily covers accidental death and permanent disability. Additionally, most people’s interaction with this coverage has been through basic personal accident coverage that comes with their debit and credit cards. Often most people don’t even know they have this coverage.
In contrast, typical GPA coverage is much broader and customizable in scope, providing inclusive and comprehensive insurance not only for hospitalization or accidental death, but also to cover many scenarios, including both disability temporary and loss of income during disability. period without a waiting period. Additionally, businesses can benefit from additional coverages for burns, fractures, comas, and daily income support, which are rarely seen in retail products. It is also possible to cover expenses related to lifestyle changes necessitated by a disability or accident and we are now seeing some new age policies provide covers for protection against EMI, health related incidents which occur produce in adventure sports and trauma counselling. A group personal accident insurance policy also covers employees from day one. Cost-wise, the insurance cover is more than affordable – a quality GPA cover of Rs 5 lakh can cost a business as little as INR 100 per employee per year.
The government is stepping up
The government, for its part, has played a major role in providing at least a basic safety net through the employee state insurance scheme, and now, more recently, through the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Yojana ( PMSBY), which was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2015. PMSBY is a government-backed accident insurance scheme that provides basic cover of INR 2 lakh in case of accidental death or permanent total disability and of INR 1 lakh in case of permanent partial disability. The scheme is open to people between the ages of 18 and 70 at an annual premium of INR 20 per person. As of March 31, 2022, more than 22 million Indians have registered for PMSBY, although there is certainly room to raise more awareness about the uptake and use of this insurance coverage.
In summary, people with disabilities can benefit enormously from comprehensive personal accident and health insurance coverage. It can help ease the financial burden resulting from medical and other treatments, provide a lump sum or steady stream of income to support the family, and instead focus on the more important task of healing and living a dignified life. .
Akshay Golechha, Manager, Partnerships, Plum
(DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely those of the author and ETHealthworld does not necessarily endorse them. ETHealthworld.com shall not be liable for any damage caused to any person/organization directly or indirectly)
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