Insurance regulator IRDAI has constituted a five-member expert committee comprising medical experts and insurers for advice on matters related to mental health and insurance.
With the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS) Director Pratima Murthy as chairperson, the committee will be providing advice and inputs on existing coverage and those to be offered for mental illnesses. It will also guide on the terminology and concept from a medical domain perspective, and aspects pertaining to mental illnesses from an insurance perspective.
The panel, with a two-year tenure, comes in the backdrop of mental health being identified as an important area requiring attention for insurance coverage. “A holistic examination of aspects involved such as types of conditions, treatments from an insurance perspective is necessary when dealing with products designed to cover mental illnesses and other related aspects,” the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India said.
Separately, IRDAI advised all insurers to comply with the provisions pertaining to insurance covers for the surrogate mother and oocyte donor under the Surrogacy (Regulation) Act, 2021, and ART Act, 2021. “All insurers are directed to comply with the provisions of the two Acts with immediate effect and ensure suitable products are made available,” it said in a circular.
Under the Surrogacy (Regulation) Act the intending woman or couple should purchase a three-year health insurance for the surrogate mother. The cover should be for an amount sufficient to cover all expenses for all complications arising out of pregnancy and also covering post-partum delivery complications.
The ART Act, 2021, pertaining to Assisted Reproductive Technology, has stipulated insurance coverage for 12 months in favour of the oocyte donor by the commissioning couple or woman, for an amount sufficient to cover all expenses for complications arising due to oocyte retrieval.