Despite playing multiple roles, Indian women ignore health: Survey

Mumbai: As Indian women continue to endeavour to do the best in their life and profession, they are tending to neglect their health, shows a recent survey.

Indian pregnant women wait for a check-up at a government hospital in Amritsar.Photo : AFP
Indian pregnant women wait for a check-up at a government hospital in Amritsar.
Photo : AFP

According to the survey by insurer ICICI Lombard, only 39 per cent of respondents (women) were covered by any health insurance.

“It is an irony that despite playing multiple roles, women ignore their own health and well-being. In fact, the multi-responsibility avatar is precisely the reason why they should ensure good health for themselves.

“Today’s woman needs to give her health its due importance and health insurance is the critical tool which can help them stay protected from the perils of her hectic lifestyle,” ICICI Lombard GIC Chief – Underwriting and Claims – Sanjay Datta said quoting the survey.

The online survey was conducted by the private general insurer in February 2015, and saw it reviewing responses from 1,009 women.

It revealed that out of 79 per cent respondents, 16 per cent did not go for any tests while 63 per cent went for health check-ups only if unwell.

This, it pointed out, is despite 71 per cent of them succumbing to illness at least once or twice a year.

The pattern was established by ICICI Lombard’s claims data analysis for 2013 and 2014, which showed that women were prone to and increasingly succumbing to chronic ailments like arthritis, anaemia, metabolic disorders and cancer as compared to men.

The survey further revealed that only 39 per cent of the respondents were covered by health insurance. Among those who were not covered, 53 per cent had never thought about it, the report added.

Of the 39 per cent respondents who were covered, only 22 per cent had purchased a policy by themselves while a large share of around 63 per cent owned it through their husband or father with another 16 per cent having it sponsored by their employer.

Forty-eight per cent of those with health cover were not aware of cover details while 40 per cent did not know the process of how to avail claim benefits.