Your Health is More Important Than Breaking the Law
January 14, 2017
Having membership of more than one medical aid can be quite fun. In fact, some people think they’re smart by doing this.
Tricking the medical schemes by getting as much money from them as they can.
Running out of funds with one would mean just claiming from the other scheme.
Some people even try to belong to 3 or 4 medical schemes to score.
It may be fun to some, but it’s fraud to the law.
Membership of more than one medical aid is against the law
There are two types of medical aid schemes. Open and Restricted. Open schemes are open to the public; Restricted schemes only accept certain people such as government employees.
In South Africa however, if you belong to more than one medical aid, this is considered as fraud. In fact, Section 28 of the Medical Schemes Act 131 of 1998 prohibits you from belonging to two or more medical plans at the same time.
Ignorance of the law is no defence
It’s true that people change from one medical plan to another and forget to cancel their previous one. Forgetting, however, isn’t an excuse and the outcome could be severe. You have to take action if you become aware that you belong to more than one medical aid.
Failing to act could mean the cancellation of your membership or suspension. Even worse, you will end up on a fraud database list which all the different medical aid companies can view.
Membership of more than one medical aid – there’s plenty of time to do things properly
If you do want to change plans, you have to give 30 days written notice. You can then join another scheme. The scheme must provide you with a membership certificate within 30 days of the termination of your membership.
Medical schemes of today are quite different to what they were decades ago. Today, strict rules and regulations govern the industry, put there to protect the members but also to protect the financial sustainability of the scheme.
Just like the companies have to abide by the rules, members have to meet certain standards too.
Because private health care costs are increasing, people believe belonging to more than one medical aid can solve the problem. They also don’t like the waiting periods where they have no cover, even though they are a member. With two plans, they can benefit from one while waiting for the other to pay out.
Joining a medical aid scheme is quite easy
Becoming a member of a medical aid is simple, as it’s a matter of filling in an online application form that takes just minutes. However, with high premiums each month, to belong to several schemes can be difficult, if you don’t pay your monthly fees, your plan is closed.
It pays to stick to one Medical aid plan
If you need to have a medical aid plan, the only way to benefit from it is to stay on the right side of the law and belong to one only. Go online to get free Medical aid quotes.
All info was correct at time of publishing