The Difference Between Accident Insurance & Health Insurance

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The Difference Between Accident Insurance and Health Insurance

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In this mazy world of insurance, understanding the different types of cover can be a nightmare. Accident insurance and health insurance are two of many policies that look like they offer the same services, but they have differences that you need to know about. This guide will give you the ins and outs of these two policies, so you can make the right decision for you.

What is accident insurance?

Also known as Accident Cover, the reason why it exists is to make sure you have private healthcare when there’s an accidental emergency. When weighing up the options between health insurance vs accident insurance, most people see this policy as a great way to make sure you’re covered when you need it most.

What is health insurance?

When it comes to health or Medical insurance plans, the benefits focus on your daily medical needs. With health insurance you can go see a doctor, get medication, do blood tests and more.


How does accident insurance differ from health insurance in terms of coverage, benefits, and cost?

One aspect that’s common with different types of accident and health insurance plans, is that they are not the same as medical aid. With that said, there are differences between these two policies that you need to consider:


While both plans give you access to private healthcare, it’s for different reasons. Accident insurance is the policy that covers medical emergencies like car accidents, heart attacks or strokes. Health insurance takes care of medical needs like colds and flu treatment, a new pair of glasses, medication for common chronic conditions, and even counselling. Not all service providers have the same benefits, so it’s important to check their policy docs for details.


Some of the benefits found in many accident insurance plans include:
● Casualty and in-hospital cover for accidental injury
● Emergency stabilisation and ambulance services
● Death and disability cover

The benefits you will find in health insurance plans include:
● Private Doctor visits
● Chronic and over-the-counter medication
● Access to specialists like peadiatricians and gynaecologists


Accident insurance is usually more affordable, because it focuses on emergencies only. Health insurance is more expensive in comparison, because it covers medical services that are generally used more often. Overall though, policies are designed to be affordable: Some service providers even give you the option of getting accident and health insurance, for less than R600 per month! With medical care being so expensive, these types of policies are game changers.


How to find the best personal accident or health Insurance policy

By “the best”, we always mean “best for you” So with that in mind, here are some things you may want to consider before becoming a policyholder:

1. Assess your needs: Your lifestyle, health condition, and potential risks all determine the level of cover you need.
2. Compare plans: Research and compare the different limits, benefits, exclusions, and premiums that service providers have.
3. Consider additional coverage: Plans may have buy-ups that cover medical needs like critical illness coverage or disabilities. These might be some extra benefits that your plan needs to have.
4. Review Policy Terms: Go through the terms that the provider has for things like waiting periods, claim procedures and cancellations. You want to make sure your provider will make access to private healthcare pain-free.
5. Seek Professional Advice: Speak with insurance professionals or financial advisors to get their opinion on policies you should consider. With their advice, you decrease your chances of making a mistake.

Quite a few things to think about, right? Here’s the main takeaway:

Seeing the difference between accident insurance and health insurance is like seeing the difference between a seat belt and an air bag – Both are there to protect you, but in different ways. By understanding the differences in coverage, benefits, and cost, you have the power you need to make the right decision.


Frequently asked questions

Is Accident Insurance the same as Health Insurance?

No, they serve different purposes. Accident Insurance focuses on covering medical emergencies caused by accidents, while Health Insurance covers your daily medical needs

Are alternative treatments covered by health insurance?

It depends on the policy, but most health insurance plans only focus on the more common daily medical needs. Check the policy documents for specifics on coverage

How do premiums for accident insurance compare to health insurance?

Premiums vary based on coverage and insurer. Generally, accident insurance premiums are lower than health insurance, because they offer more targeted coverage for specific events.

Are medical expenses from accidents covered by health insurance?

No, health insurance covers accident-related medical expenses. The Accident insurance you choose will provide benefits specifically tailored to accidents, such as disability coverage.


Not all accident insurance and health Insurance plans are the same and benefits as well as limitations may vary. Descriptions of benefits given are meant to be for general educational purposes only and you must ensure that you seek the advice of a broker to ensure any product choice you make suits your individual needs.

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2 thoughts on “The Difference Between Accident Insurance and Health Insurance

  1. I would like to buy insurance for my brother. He is in Durban and I am in Gauteng. This makes it impossible for him to be with me to participate in the call. How do I go about to take out insurance for my brother without him around? Please I would really like to do this for him. Can you send an email after our discussion, for him to sign and give him consent?

    1. Hi Melanie,
      I see you sent your details from the site, which is the right way to go about it. Our broker agents will be able to take most of the details from you over the phone, and will only need to conference your brother into the call at the end to get his consent.
      If you don’t have success with this route, please email hello@dischemhealth.co.za and we will find another plan. For more details: https://dischemhealth.co.za/medical-insurance/buy-medical-insurance-for-someone/

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