104-year-old opens Kerala bank’s senior citizen centre

Thrissur (Kerala) : A 104-year-old man inaugurated a special service centre of the South Indian Bank (SIB) for senior citizens here Wednesday, 29th January 2014.

Meleth Ouseph, who hails from the cultural capital of the state, Thrissur, which is also the headquarters of the bank, was the chief guest by virtue of being the oldest customer of the bank.

“I was 19 when the SIB was launched and have been watching the progress of the bank with keen interest,” said the farmer, who lives with his son.

Bank’s MD and CEO V.A. Joseph said this new facility is being opened for the convenience of senior citizens and is being handled by experienced staff.

Insurance Insight: All you need to know for senior citizens

By Yashish Dahiya Policybazaar.com

yashHealth insurance is more important for the elderly than the others, for the simple reason that, as age advances, one’s vulnerability to diseases and physical conditions increases. Thus, a medical emergency could result in severe financial crisis, unless covered under a comprehensive medical insurance policy. Adding to their apathy is the fact that there are many a number of Health insurers in the country who are not happy to provide senior citizens health insurance because of the higher loss ratios.

The scenario now is changing. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority in one of its recent directives had asked general insurance companies to keep at least 65 years as the maximum entry age for a health insurance policy. This has helped increase the number of health insurance products for senior citizens in the Indian market. Many companies have no come up with health insurance policy specifically designed for senior citizens. For example, Star Health Senior Citizen Red Carpet Plan, Bajaj Allianz Silver Health and many more.

Elaborating a little on these plans, Star Health Senior Citizen Red Carpet policy covers people in the age group of 60-69 years. Although there is copayment of 50%, there are no medical tests required at the time of the payment of the policy. Similarly, Similarly, Bajaj Allianz Silver Plan covers people till the age group of 75 years and the policy can be renewed till 80 years. The Sum Insured options start from Rs 50,000 to Rs 5,00,000. Similarly, Oriental insurance’s plan called Hope states no upper age limit for health insurance and covers 11 specified critical illness diseases like Accidental Injury, Knee Replacement, Cardio Vascular Diseases, Chronic Renal Failure, Cancer, Hepato-Biliary Disorders, Chronic Obstructive Lung Diseases, etc.

There are a couple of things that senior citizens should keep in mind while purchasing health insurance. Firstly, if you are confident about your health then take a health examination and show proof of your good health to a health insurance agent & company. This proves that you might be getting up there in age but there aren’t any high risks that they would have to take yet. Secondly, it’s imperative that good hospitals near the policy holder’s place of residence are under the network hospitals. At the time of emergency, travelling long distance to reach the network hospital is not suitable at all.

Waiting period for pre-existing conditions is also an important aspect to keep in mind when it comes to purchasing health insurance. Lesser the pre-existing cover, the better. Normally, it ranges between 3-4 years for senior citizens. Copayment options should also be considered as it reduces the premium to be paid by the policy holder. Finally, in case of senior citizen plans, it is very important that all the clauses are read and clearly understood. A seemingly normal looking clause can have certain hidden implications; hence, it is advised to consult the company representative to get a perfect clarity.

As the market is abound with options it gets important to go through all the options and then zero down on one to buy the best health insurance policy for the elderly. Ideally, try to compare senior citizen health insurance quotes online from a number of different providers. It allows you to pick and choose from policies and rates and get in touch with a representative of the insurance company to discuss risk and ways you can lower it.  Before you decide on purchasing a certain policy, we would recommend you scan all the possible options and decide on the one that is best healthcare policy suitable for senior citizens. The author is a CEO and co-founder, www.policybazaar.com

Read more at: http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/health-insurance/insurance-insight-all-you-need-to-know-for-senior-citizens_1032194.html?utm_source=ref_article

Varicose veins and stockings

varicoseAs we all know, the heart pumps blood through the body. Arteries carry oxygenated blood to all parts of the body and the veins bring the de-oxygenated blood back to the heart.

Veins have one-way valves that ensure that blood keeps moving towards the heart but not in the opposite direction (like the check valves used in plumbing). These valves ensure that blood continues to flow in the right direction irrespective of whether you are standing, sitting, lying down or even standing on your head!

However with age and due to certain health conditions such as obesity and hormonal changes, these values become faulty. This results in pooling or accumulation of blood in certain areas (especially in veins near the skin) causing the veins to be distended and weakened. This is what causes varicose veins to develop (most often in the legs) and they can be mildly to moderately painful.

Symptoms include a dull, heavy aching or burning sensation, fatigue, and mild generalized swelling of the feet and ankles. If you have varicose veins with mild or no symptoms, keeping your legs elevated, doing mild exercises and keeping off caffiene and alcohol can help keep discomfort to the minimum.

If your discomfort is more, you may want to use compression stockings. Compression stockings, as their name implies, apply pressure on your legs and help blood flow better thereby alleviating many of the symptoms of varicose veins.

Compression stockings come in many sizes, lengths, types (with toe open, fully closed, …) and classes. Size is obviously S, M, L, XL, etc. based on the circumference of your leg at the ankle, calf (and thigh possibly). Choose the size based on the table given in the stocking box and not based on how easy it is to put on (if it is easy to wear, it is the wrong size for you).

Length is the length of the stockings and is usually upto below knee(AD), mid-thigh(AF), or groin(AG).

Class represents the level of pressure exerted by the stockings. Class-I stockings apply the least amount of pressure, usually measured in mmHg. Typical class-I stockings apply about 18 mmHg of pressure evenly.

There are also graduated stockings which apply maximum pressure at the bottom and gradually reducing pressure as it goes up the leg.

It is best to consult a doctor so that you can decide which is the right stocking for you.