Hospital Cover Premiums Will Rise
February 21, 2017
Despite ever increasing costs, demand for health cover continues unabated. Here we will have a look at hospital cover premiums.
It has been sparked by the Health Ministry’s inability to sufficient fund government health care services.
While essential services provided by South Africa’s teaching hospitals continue to operate, most are heavily over-burdened.
Thus the deterioration of quality health care at state-run hospitals and clinics has sparked the need for affordable hospital plans.
Private sector clinics also face the increasing costs for equipment, qualified medical personnel and consumables.
These costs, however, go to the end-user in the form of increased hospital cover premiums.
Companies offering health plans have been forced to come up with solutions to provide quality health care at an affordable price.
They have and are moving away from the traditional one-size-fits-all blanket cover.
It has seen the evolution of a pick-and-pay choice of products tailored to suit individual needs.
It gives members freedom of choice when selecting products most needed, thereby saving costs for less likely contingencies.
Affordable hospital plans provided by medical schemes is proving a popular choice.
Hospital plans cover costs when admitted to private clinics and medical institutions, but day-to-day medical costs are out-of-pocket expenses for members.
Hospital plans offer substantial savings, particularly for younger people, and cover the most expensive aspects of medical needs.
What You Should Check
- The medical scheme’s payment record – check with your doctor and dentist
- The scheme’s solvency ratio – the legally required ratio is at least 25%
- Full Cover vs. Hospital Plan – what is your budget?
- Your health – if a sufferer of a chronic disease full cover might be the best option
- Benefits – every product has its inclusions and exclusions. Check carefully
Hospital Cover Premiums
Remember too that medical aid companies will be raising their tariffs in 2017.
Discovery Health, which owns the lion’s share of the market, recently announced average increases of more than 10% in 2017.
It’s much higher than the 8.6% increase in 2016 and a lot higher than the CPI forecast of 6.8%.
According to the company, the increases are mainly due to the growing number of claims lodged in 2016 compared to previous years.
Adding to consumer gloom is the announcement by Global Credit Ratings.
Other medical aids will undoubtedly increase premiums, it warned.
Some companies are planning hikes even higher than Discovery’s.
All of these factors will force the public to take a closer look at their medical cover and adjust their policies to more affordable levels.
It is obvious that South Africans must examine at what’s on offer before committing themselves to payments beyond their means.
While it is tough to compare what’s on offer because each company’s health care options differ. Informed Healthcare Solutions analysis medical aid options offered by other major providers, across five main categories.
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All info was correct at time of publishing