With thanks to Laura du Preez of Personal Finance (article dated 29 September, in the Weekend Argus).
That time of the year is upon us once again, Year End Revisions and scheme contribution increases.
As per Laura’s article the scheme increases are as follows:
Discovery Health: more than 2.3 million beneficiaries at the end of last year, weighted average increase of 10.9% (increases ranging from between 9.8% and 11.8%)- More will be discussed regards Discovery Health in a seperate blog article.
Profmed: the medical scheme for professionals, with about 63700 beneficiaries at the end of last year, weighted increase of 8.56% (increases ranging from between 7.9% and 9.42%).
Momentum Health:almost 187 000 beneficiaries at the end of last year, average increase of 7.9% ( Increases range from 2.2% to 11.9%. The Ingwe Option, Which MH is introducing their own Primary Healthcare Network, will have a 20% decrease in contributions).
Medshield Medical Scheme: with about 221 000 beneficiaries, an average increase of 7.5%, across all 8 options (will allow the members of 5 of its options to upgrade to a higher option during the year following a life changing event).
Fedhealth: with approximately 150 000 beneficiaries, average increase of 7.9%.
As per the article, Alexander Forbes Health, states that the following schemes have increases of:
Topmed; weighted average increase of 9.47% (ranging between 7.4% and 16.5%)
Compcare; weighted average increase of 6.9%
Pharos; Weighted average increase of 10.8% (ranging between 9% and 12%).
Obviously, the affordability of medical aid schemes is a big issue in South Africa. With schemes having different plans and benefit options, it is practically very difficult to look across all schemes and see who is offering the best benefit structures for what you need.
So, call up the annual report from the Council for Medical Schemes and look at size of scheme and at last results, to get a “feel” for the scheme that you are looking at.
Another thing to look at when looking at your plan type for the new year, make sure that you know exactly how your chronic medication works (many people think they need to be on more comprehensive plans to access chronics- this is not the case with PMB chronics).
And last but not least, if you feel that you can do better with another plan option, be proactive and give your broker a call and chat to him/her. Often this will help you get onto a suitable plan for you.
And Remember It Pays to Have Cover!
Kenny Williamson: firstname.lastname@example.org