All You Need To Know About Health Insurance Waiting Periods


Health insurance waiting periods are solely determined by the type of plan you have chosen. It also depends on the insurance company selected and the coverage selected. For instance, the waiting period for maternity insurance for expectant mothers will last for a period of between 10-12 periods. On the other hand, the insurance waiting period for dental coverage is between 6-12 months.

Generally, Health Insurance waiting periods refer to the period that must pass before the health care coverage begins. In most cases, the period lasts between 30 to 90 days. However, some plans require a more extended waiting period.

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Must Know Things About Health Insurance Waiting Period

health insurance waiting period

Reason for Waiting Period

The main reason why there’s a waiting period is to help eliminate the motivation to take a health insurance policy as soon as people discover or are diagnosed with a critical ailment.

Types of Health Insurance Waiting Periods

Pre-existing condition exclusion

The period entails waiting for at least six months before one is allowed to sign a health insurance cover. It means that the coverage excludes an already existing condition. The period may vary depending on the company but could range from 12-48 months. The pre-existing condition can only be covered after the expiry of the waiting period.


Maternity waiting period

The period may range from 9 to 48 months. It means that couples planning to have a family must plan before they decide to have children. The plan covers the expenses associated with conceiving and giving birth.

Typically, most of the Health Insurance waiting periods are designed to protect the health funds from members of the public who join them to make expensive claims. It is meant to ensure that members of the fund are not subjected to conditions that result in increased premiums.  The period must lapse before anyone can make health insurance benefits claim.

Each of the companies that offer health insurance coverage may have different waiting periods, especially for the extras. But, they must conform to the waiting periods set by the government.  Most companies that offer this service strictly enforce the period. Therefore, it is important that you plan well in advance if you want to benefit from any health insurance coverage.

When the Waiting Period Apply

The waiting period is mandatory for anyone who is new to health insurance or a member who cancelled but wants to re-join the health insurance. Also, members of the public who have upgraded their health insurance policy may be subjected to a waiting period.

Notice that Health Insurance waiting periods is intended to cover the insurer from fraud from individual who may want to enroll for the cover as soon as they discover that they are sick. So, if you are planning to take cover any sooner, it is vital that you check the waiting period you must serve before you can use the cover. Heart diseases, cancer, high blood pressure, and diabetes are some of the conditions that fall under pre-existing conditions.