What is Monkeypox?

Monkeypox, also known as ‘viral zoonosis’, is the latest infectious disease to make its way to India. This disease is a rare viral disease caused by the monkeypox virus of the orthopoxvirus family. This is a communicable disease that spreads from one person to another by coming in close contact with an infected person, animal, or contaminated material like clothes. This infectious disease can also spread through the exchange of bodily fluids from an infected person. The symptoms are like smallpox but are comparatively less contagious. This disease can cause less severe illness among adults and is rarely fatal. However, children are more prone to monkeypox in comparison to adults. Commonly, the disease lasts for approximately 2-4 weeks and goes away on its own. Though, the disease can lead to difficulties in children that can also turn fatal. 

Symptoms of Monkeypox

The symptoms of monkeypox are milder compared to smallpox. Below are some of the most common symptoms of monkeypox:

  • Fever
  • Rash on face and body that examines like pimples or blisters 
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Muscle aches and backache
  • Exhaustion
  • Discomfort

Generally, the symptoms of monkeypox start within 3 weeks of exposure to the virus. If a person has flu-like symptoms, they will usually develop a rash 1-4 days later. The disease can be spread from the time symptoms begin until the rash has recovered, all scabs have fallen off, and a fresh layer of skin has formed. 

Is Monkeypox Covered in Health Insurance in India?

Monkeypox is a multi-country outbreak that is certainly covered by all health insurance plans in India. As monkeypox is an infectious disease and all health plans provide coverage for medical expenses incurred in the treatment of infectious diseases. Therefore, all standard health insurance plans will cover the treatment cost of monkeypox as per the applicable terms and conditions.

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An individual that has a valid health insurance policy can get coverage for hospitalization costs, OPD treatment charges, ambulance charges, ICU charges, etc. However, the scope of policy coverage will vary from one plan to another. By most health insurance plans, hospitalization expenses are covered, however, OPD treatment expenses are covered under some plans only. It is better to read the terms and conditions of the health insurance policy before raising a claim.

Things to note about the health insurance component of travel insurance for monkeypox coverage:

  • Not all travel insurance policies will cover medical expenses like emergency hospitalization. Some policies only cover situations related to accidents.
  • Costs incurred to treat monkeypox in a foreign location will most probably be categorized as medical expenses. Therefore, one needs to make sure to include a cover for medical expenses in the travel policy for wide-ranging coverage.
  • Coverage for monkeypox might be subject to sub-limits.
  • The travel policy might not cover monkeypox treatment if you are contaminated after landing in your home country (India). In such cases, the health insurance policy shall look into.
  • It is important for a person to go through the travel insurance policy’s inclusions and exclusions thoroughly.

Conclusion

New viruses and diseases are haunting the world. Such outbreaks, associated with the hazards of modern living, are affixed to affect people’s health negatively. So, it is important for one to have a wide-ranging health insurance policy that covers such infectious diseases. Ensure that the offered policies must have the correct balance of coverage, services, and premium. Try to pick an insurance provider that does not limit the coverage in the state of sub-limits and other such clauses. Also, before going for any health insurance, it is better to have a look at online reviews to see how the insurer is performing regarding serving the policyholders.

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Author Bio: Smriti Gala works as a Digital Marketing Manager with Coverfox. As her life turned upside down when COVID severely afflicted her family members, Smriti decided to dedicate her expertise towards informing and educating the masses about the importance of health insurance. When she is not actively writing enlightening content, our ‘monk marketer’ likes to meditate, meet new people and explore less travelled territories.

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