Can insurance companies cover the cost of immediate treatment for accident victims? Kerala HC to review

Whether insurance companies can cover the costs of immediate treatment of accident victims is an issue under consideration by the High Court of Kerala, which has itself initiated a PIL to look into that question. The DIP was seized by the High Court on the basis of a letter sent by students of Mariyan International Management Studies at Kuttikanam in Idukki to Judge Sunil Thomas regarding the assumption of the costs of immediate or specialized treatment of accident victims by insurance companies or their regulator – IRDA.

The students raised the issue after one of their classmates had an accident on his way home. Although they were admitted to a government medical college, her parents had to spend almost a lakh on facilities like scanning, which were not available there and had to be used by private hospitals nearby, the court noted.

The students also said in their letter that their classmate’s parents, who work as a coolie, had to run from pillar to post to organize money amid the COVID pandemic.

Therefore, they urged the High Court to order insurance companies and the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) to cover the costs of treating accident victims immediately and deduct the amounts. of the insurance claim later.

The case was entered on Wednesday before a bench of Justices K Vinod Chandran and C Jayachandran who said the case would be heard by the appropriate bench next week.

Lead government litigant V Tekchand appeared for the State of Kerala.

The students, in their letter, also said that previously the government had offered an insurance policy to cover emergency treatment of accident victims for the first 48 hours, but the insurance companies s ‘were opposed to the terms of the same and subsequently the proposal was chopped.

The students further claimed that there is an order from the Kerala State Human Rights Commission that states that the state government should bear the cost of treating accident victims.

“For this, it was proposed to set up a reserve fund by allocating 10% of the amount collected as a fine for contraventions by the police and motor vehicle service.

“The state government was ordered to submit a report on the measures taken in this regard by August 30, 2013, but the accidents show that this was not duly taken into account by the government of the State, ”the students said in the letter.

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