How to change medical schemes
December 27, 2012
Everyone is entitled to change their medical cover if they believe they can get better service, benefits or value for money from a different company. There are easy steps you can follow to change your medical scheme. However, before you take action consider the reasons for your unhappiness. First see if you’ll actually benefit from making this move. Here we give you tips on how to change medical schemes.
How to change medical schemes – Rival schemes
Look at a rival schemes quotes and compare their policies to your own. Sometimes all you need is a bit of perspective. You may realise that with a few minor changes you can be happy and you won’t need to move.
However, if you are feeling aggrieved, your first step should be to contact your current health insurance company or medical scheme to try and find a resolution.
In the event that you’re not satisfied with the result you can then seek help from the Council for Medical Schemes. If you can’t settle your issues then you free to leave your current hospital plan or medical aid.
How to change medical schemes – Moving to a new scheme
When you move to a new scheme, make sure you are aware if there are late joiner fees or imposed waiting period where you cannot claim benefits even though you are a paying member.
There are two types of waiting periods: general and condition-specific. The general waiting period can be anything up to 90 days. On the other hand, the condition-specific waiting period can last up to one year. That applies to members with a chronic or pre-existing medical condition.
These waiting periods don’t apply to all new members. They depend on information like the duration of your previous health insurance cover or breaks between hospital plans. The main reason for waiting periods is to prevent people from joining just when they are sick and then relying on existing members to pay for their care.
How to change medical schemes
You need to find a medical policy that you feel suits you better than your current one. There is a registration procedure to follow. Then you wait for confirmation that the medical aid or insurance company has accepted you as a new member.
After this validation you send written notification to your current health insurance company. You inform them of your contract termination. You should receive a membership certificate from this company, stipulating your period of cover so that you can prove you’ve belonged to a medical plan.
You need to watch your dates carefully because it’s illegal to belong to two medical schemes at the same time. Know your termination date and then check that your new contract begins the very next day.
This is also to ensure that you are never without cover because you don’t know when you will need emergency medical help. You are still entitled to the benefits from the old policy until the last day that you are a paying member.
Medical health is important and everyone should have an affordable medical plan.
If you feel that your monthly contributions are too high, you’re unhappy with the benefits you receive or you feel that the service is poor, then you should look for a new medical scheme that will better suit your needs.
All info was correct at time of publishing