Pacific Prime’s experts guide new parents on finding the right maternity insurance for their needs
16 May 2019| Last updated on 21 May 2019
Dubai is arguably one of the best locations for quality maternity care in the world
Especially given that the Dubai Health Insurance Law in 2013 has mandated that health insurance coverage for all residents must provide the most basic benefits, which include maternity coverage.
Having said that, for expectant mothers or those who are looking to start a family soon in the Emirates, there are still a vast array of factors they should take into account while hunting for the right maternity insurance.
In light of this, the team of experts at our health insurance partner Pacific Prime Dubai will divulge 5 handful tips for mothers-to-be on securing maternity insurance.
1. Ensure that your coverage limit is enough
Giving birth in Dubai is expensive. That’s why the first question that crosses parents’ minds when they think about their new addition is often, “How much will it cost?”. For instance, our Dubai Maternity Insurance Guide 2018-2019 has shown that normal delivery can cost up to AED 14,000, and C-section delivery can cost up to AED 27,138. And that’s before counting additional charges such as antenatal tests and scans.
Although the Dubai Health Insurance Law requires all employers to offer insurance coverage to all employees, the minimum legally required annual claims limit is only AED 150,000. This limit is often too low and thus policyholders are often forced to pay a considerable amount out of their pocket for maternity care.
Hence, we advise opting for a more comprehensive Dubai maternity insurance solution to make sure your coverage is adequate enough to address the costs of pregnancy, labor, and delivery in Dubai.
2. Pre & post-natal expenses
While comparing the prices of various hospitals, it is important to know that prices and features of the various antenatal packages and post-natal services can be very different among hospitals. Besides, even after a package is purchased, developments could lead to a need for additional tests, especially for ‘high risk’ pregnancies, so knowing exactly what is included is important.
3. Consider newborn insurance if necessary
Of course, we always want everything to go smoothly with labor and delivery, but sometimes things just don’t work out as planned. Should there be any complications following delivery, the total treatment costs can be exponentially higher than a normal birth. Worse still, a maternity insurance policy may only address these costs for 15-90 days following birth and you will be on your own after that period.
Luckily, newborn coverage benefit can cover your child’s health on an ongoing basis from the moment they are born. This will provide benefits for as long as they are needed, and can raise the benefits for addressing costs for treatment stemming from complications during or after birth.
4. Purchase maternity insurance in advance
The Health Insurance Law does not set out any specific regulations regarding waiting periods. Many insurers, therefore, still impose a six-month waiting period before you can actually claim for maternity care.
If you’re already pregnant when taking out a policy, the insurance company will add a significant loading of up to Dh25,000 onto the premium of your policy to include the maternity costs, which may make taking out a maternity insurance policy during pregnancy financially unfeasible. As such, it pays to plan in advance to avoid having to foot the hefty bill by yourself.
5. Check your coverage options
Apart from the aforementioned waiting periods, there are other coverage options that you should look out for when seeking maternity insurance.
- Direct-billing & hassle-free claims procedures
For some insurance plans, you will need to pay upfront and lodge claims forms later, while others support direct-billing, meaning that the insurer will pay on behalf of you to the hospital directly. This process can make a world of difference to your experience.
- Coverage for vaccinations
Something that every child needs, so you should make sure that coverage is included.
Deductibles are the amount that you will have to pay out before lodging claims to the insurer. Usually, the higher the deductibles are, the lower the premiums, and vice versa.
- Freedom of choice
Some insurance plans have a wider network of service providers so that policyholders have greater flexibility in choosing their preferred doctor and hospital.
If you have any questions about your maternity insurance policy, it’s best to contact your insurance provider or a broker to ensure its terms and conditions are adequate to meet your actual needs.