Can People Above 65 Buy Health Insurance? (Updated)

Can People Above 65 Buy Health Insurance
Can People Above 65 Buy Health Insurance

In a landmark move, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDAI) has recently made sweeping changes to health insurance regulations in India, removing barriers that previously restricted access for older populations. The most notable among these changes is the elimination of the 65-year age cap for buying health insurance. This decision marks a significant step towards creating a more inclusive and accommodating healthcare system for all age groups, especially seniors. Here’s what you need to know about the new rules and how they affect potential policyholders.

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Removal of Age Limit for Health Insurance

Traditionally, individuals were only eligible to purchase new health insurance policies until they reached the age of 65. This restriction has been removed, opening the door for anyone, regardless of age, to secure health insurance. This change not only increases access but also offers peace of mind to older individuals who might have previously felt vulnerable due to potential medical costs as they age.

Coverage for All Age Groups and Conditions

Under the new regulations, insurers are now mandated to provide plans that cater to a diverse range of demographics, including specific products for seniors, students, and children. This tailored approach ensures that everyone has access to suitable health coverage. Furthermore, insurers must now include coverage for pre-existing conditions, such as chronic diseases like cancer and AIDS, which are more prevalent in older demographics. This inclusion is crucial in supporting the health needs of an ageing population.

Flexible Payment Options

Recognizing the financial constraints that often come with retirement or fixed incomes, the IRDAI now allows insurers to offer premium installment plans. This flexibility helps make health insurance more affordable and accessible by spreading the cost over several payments. Additionally, the regulation requires that travel insurance policies be handled solely through general and health insurers, streamlining the process and potentially offering more specialized coverage options.

Coverage for AYUSH Treatments

In a move that acknowledges the importance and effectiveness of traditional medicine, there is now unlimited coverage for AYUSH treatments, which include Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy. This provision not only caters to those who prefer these methods but also supports a holistic approach to health, which is often more integrative and preventative.

Benefit-Based Claims

The new rules permit holders of benefit-based policies to file claims with multiple insurers. This means that if a policyholder has more than one insurance policy, they can receive payouts from each for the same claim, thereby increasing the coverage and reducing out-of-pocket expenses. This is particularly advantageous for seniors who might need extensive medical procedures or long-term care.

Specialised Support for Senior Citizens

IRDAI has established a specialized channel for addressing complaints and claims from senior citizens, ensuring that their specific needs are handled promptly and with the required sensitivity. This dedicated support mechanism aims to enhance the customer service experience for older adults, making it easier for them to manage their policies and resolve any issues they encounter.


The removal of the age cap for buying health insurance is a commendable step by IRDAI towards inclusivity and comprehensive healthcare coverage. By accommodating the needs of all age groups, especially the elderly, and integrating flexible payment options, comprehensive coverage, and specialized support, these changes promise to transform the landscape of health insurance in India. This is a progressive move toward safeguarding the health and well-being of every citizen, ensuring that everyone has the financial support they need to access quality healthcare

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