India Network Visitor Health Insurance Program Announces Restrictions On Pre-existing Condition Plan Enrollment of New Visitors Aged 65 and Over Effective August 1, 2014

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India Network visitor health insurance programs have been providing valuable coverage for all ages 0-99 with or without pre-existing conditions. These plans have now been oversubscribed due to the unique coverage options available to members.

Pre-existing condition coverage protects the policy holders from any eventuality, whether a particular hospitalization is medically determined as a result of pre-existing condition, known or unknown to the policy holder or not.

India Network Services, administrator of visitor health insurance in the USA, announced today that the comprehensive and scheduled benefit health insurance policies exceeded expectations of enrollment of elderly parents during the year. As a result of excessive enrollment of elderly parent in its flagship health insurance program covering both new problems and pre-existing conditions, India Network may be suspending new enrollments effective August 1, 2014 for the season. All community members are urged to enroll their visitors in health insurance coverage accorded by the plans before the closure of enrollment period this summer.

At this time, India Network ACE Network Plan and ACE Premier plans are the only two plans in the United States offering pre-existing condition health insurance coverage to all ages, 0 to 99 years old. In addition, these are only plans that treat pre-existing conditions on par with new problems without any conditional coverage such as sudden recurrence or acute onset conditions, etc. Unfortunately, because of their unique coverage for elderly parents with medical conditions, these plans have been over subscribed beyond anyone's expectation, particularly in the age groups 60-99 years old. More than 80% of non-US citizen seniors age 55 and older visiting the USA from India are now selecting pre-existing condition coverage for extended stays of 90 days or longer. This continues the five year annual trend line of the approximate ten percent shift from basic visitor health insurance policies to those plans that offer pre-existing condition coverage for seniors traveling to the USA.

Pre-existing condition coverage offered by India network plans protects the policy holders from any eventuality, whether a particularly hospitalization is medically determined as a result of pre-existing condition, known or unknown to the policy holder or not. One may not necessarily have pre-existing conditions to opt for these plans since typical medical conditions such as heart attack, stroke, brain hemorrhage, etc are denied by all visitor plans under pre-existing condition exclusion clause. India Network Health Insurance is one of few plans that explicitly provide coverage for such catastrophic medical conditions when the visitor has chosen pre-existing condition coverage.

Visitor medical enrollments likewise show an increase in the recently introduced comprehensive coverage with pre-existing conditions. India Network offers negotiated rates with in-network providers and coverage for in-patient and outpatient care, emergencies related to diabetes, high blood pressure and other pre-existing issues common to Asian Indians visiting the USA. Since its introduction in January 2014, comprehensive pre-existing coverage for seniors age 55 and older now represents a significant portion of pre-existing plans chosen by this demographic group.

Dr. KV Rao, India Network Foundation founder commented, “The trend towards the selection of pre-existing condition coverage is driven in a large part by the unique plans offered through India Network that do not restrict claims based on diabetes or heart conditions, and by the reasonable cost of these pre-existing coverage plans. The Foundation is pleased to offer the Indian community an affordable choice for their visiting family members, regardless of the age of the parent. However, the Indian community has to understand that the plans survival depend on full participation of all visitors, healthy ones as well as people with pre-existing conditions.”

Consistent with the health issues expected by elderly Indians visiting children in the United States, the tendency to select pre-existing plans becomes even higher with nearly four out of five seniors age 65 and older choosing either a Fixed Coverage or Comprehensive plan with pre-existing condition coverage.

Fixed coverage plans typically offer lower premiums for visitors 60 years and older, do not require a network provider or facility, and pay based on a schedule of benefits which typically increase as the coverage amount increases. Plans start as low as $50,000 with a per incident deductible based on a $250 base. While fixed coverage plans pay above the standard Medicare payments providers receive, if the provider charges more than allowed amount, the insured is responsible for the difference.

Comprehensive coverage plans offer negotiated in-network rates, a comparable deductible to fixed plans, and a co-insurance of 20% for the insured of the medical expenses. This typically results in limited out-of-pocket expense of deductible of $250 for new problems and l $1,000 for pre-existing related problems.

About India Network Foundation
India Network Foundation, established as a US non-profit organization, has been helping the Asian Indian community in North America with programs and grants to academics from India for more than two decades. India Network Foundation sponsors visitor health insurance to tourists, students, temporary workers (H1 visa holders) and their families. All insurance products are administered by India Network Services.
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About India Network Health Insurance
India Network Services, is a US based company that administers visitor health insurance to transition residents, tourists, students, temporary workers and their families. Visitor medical plans are offered for all age groups with both fixed coverage, comprehensive coverage and with pre-existing condition coverage.

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Greg Caine
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