Medical aid changes coming in 2017
Medical Aid schemes are complex as it is and anyone looking to join a medical aid might well have to get assistance with making the right decisions. Here we will have a look at the new medical aid changes in 2017.
You can’t get too familiar with your medical aid either as they change quite often. Now the National Treasury has brought out two new medical scheme regulations for 2017.
The changes coming in 2017 will include –
- the discontinuation of primary health care policies
- a limit on the amount you can claim with your gap cover and hospital cash-back plan
The National Treasury issued a final white paper Gazette notice, setting a specific limit on the amount of money the medical schemes could issue on a daily- and monthly basis.
The regulations mean that insurers will only be able to offer hospital cash plans which have benefits up to R3 000 each day or an amount of R20 000 a year. While gap cover will have an amount limited to R150 000 per year.
Medical expenses are on the rise, and these medical aid changes have been brought about to kerb rising medical expenses. Treasury said that the regulations were to ensure that private medical care was within the policy framework of government.
Better Protection for Consumers? What about the Poor?
Treasury went on to add that the regulations were to ensure better protection for consumers. As the regulations were there to supervise medical schemes and health insurance products.
And yet these regulations will impact the poor. People with primary health care insurance policies will now have to fork out massive sums of money to medical aid if they want medical insurance.
Up until now, they have been paying something like R400 a month for primary health care insurance. Whereas with medical aid they won’t likely be able to get away with anything under R1 500.
Some medical experts also believe these demarcation regulations will deprive poor people of access to private health care. So these people will never be able to afford the conventional medical aid premiums of 2017. The Government is also taking medical care away from them. So forcing them to pay up for medical aid, use public health care or simply opt to not get treatment and die.
These primary health care insurance plans are quite similar to medical aid schemes in a way. But they don’t cover prescribed minimum benefits – these PMBs which medical aids have to cover.
You’re being Forced to Have Medical Aid you can’t Afford – Medical aid changes
So the crux of the matter, according to Treasury, is that primary health care insurance policies are harming medical aid schemes – attracting people away from them. It looks like the government is essentially just concerned about money and could care less whether you have access to medical care or not.
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