Treatment for COVID-19 accounted for as much as 11% of the total health insurance claims paid by insurance companies during the first five months of the current financial year, says a research conducted by

The research further revealed that 89% of health insurance claims during April 1, 2020 and August 31, 2020 were for other major illnesses, including cancer, heart problems, kidney and treatment., which accounts for about 10% of India's retail health insurance market, said the data pertains to April 1 to August 31.

The insurtech brand further said the increasing incidence of coronavirus cases and the rising cost of treatment have been promoting more and more people to opt for health insurance in these uncertain times.

"As per Policybazaar data, COVID claims are only 11 per cent out of overall claims. The rest 89 per cent are of other major illnesses…," it said.

The COVID-19 scare, it said, "has triggered everyone to prioritise health insurance like never before not only for protection against a pandemic but also against any bigger events or illnesses like lifestyle disease which will stay here forever."

As regards the cost of treatment, the insurance aggregator said COVID-19 treatment may cost more than ₹10 lakh in case of prolonged hospitalisation.

A comprehensive health insurance policy with ₹10 lakh sum insured for a 32-year-old individual costs anywhere between ₹7,000–9,000 annually, it said.

However, there are comprehensive plans available in the market with ₹1 crore sum insured at such nominal premiums. A ₹1 crore plan for a 32-year-old will cost somewhere around ₹13,000-15,000 annually.

Amit Chhabra, Head-Health Insurance, said health business at the market place grew by 130 per cent during July and 90 per cent during April-June quarter.

"As of all the health insurance policies being sold online in the last 3 months, the demand for 1 crore (sum assured) grew from 3 per cent to 40 per cent. Amidst the COVID scare, most people are looking at protecting themselves and their families with a whole some plan," he said.

According to him, most COVID-19 hospitalisations are for elderly people with co-morbidities, which generally triggers a high claim amount.

Most young and healthy people getting infected with COVID-19 are not getting hospitalised, he added.