With COVID expenses rising, taxpayers need more than an insurance rebate, says a wealth manager
- Cost of insurance, hospitalisation and other COVID-19 related healthcare expenses have badly hit an individual's finances.
- With rising inflation amid the ongoing pandemic-induced crisis in the country, taxpayers expect some benefits and concessions in the budget.
- Check out news and development related to the
budget 2022on Budget Insider.
AdvertisementThe ongoing COVID-19 crisis has made healthcare more expensive and unaffordable for the Indian middle class. In such times, the cost of insurance, hospitalisation and other COVID-19 related healthcare expenses put a lot of pressure on the taxpayer’s wallet.
Adding to the woes, retail inflation is currently at a five-month high at 5.59% (in December) making essential food items even more expensive.
Hence, the upcoming union budget is expected to provide some relief on health-related expenses.
“Almost 75% of the people’s money spent on healthcare is out of the box. And ₹25,000 allowance under section 80D is really routed through the insurance route and if one looks at the amount spent on healthcare as a percentage of GDP is 1.3%. I think the limit of ₹25,000 needs to be increased because ₹25,000 in today’s day is probably not really gonna take care of hospitalisation or medication or treatment,” said Aarti Desikan, executive director, private wealth management at Anand Rathi Securities in a conversation with Business Insider.
Under Section 80D, you are allowed to claim a tax deduction of up to Rs 25,000 per financial year on medical insurance premiums.
“A special COVID expense related deduction may be allowed under section 80D or 80DDB to provide tax relief for COVID-19 patients and their families,” said Clear (formerly ClearTax), a platform for tax and GST filing.
Adding to it, the healthcare industry hopes that the government will rationalise the goods and services tax (GST) on healthcare supplements from the current 18% to 5%, which would make the products affordable.
“Self-care, preventive healthcare and holistic wellness have taken centre stage with a growing awareness around nutrition and immunity among consumers…Hence to give impetus to the overall industry, we hope that the government will rationalise GST on healthcare supplements from 18% to 5% in the upcoming
SEE ALSO: A market guru explains why real estate, housing and textiles should get some budget boost
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