Discovery Health hikes up premiums for 2013

By Staff Writer

Discovery Health Medical Scheme (DHMS) members will see contribution increases of between 9.8% and 11.8% in 2013. The announcement, which was made last week Friday, comes after several smaller schemes announced increases in the single digits.


DHMS said there are three main factors that drove the contribution increases for 2013: tariffs, which are closely correlated to the CPI, demand side factors that reflect changing demographics such as ageing membership, increasing disease burden and adverse selection; supply side factors due to advances in medical technology and practice and benefit enhancements.


Discovery Health CEO, Dr Jonathan Broomberg, said the DHMS contribution increases of between 9.8% and 11.8% are set at a level that factors in benefit enhancements while allowing for growth and solvency requirements, as well as making provision for the effect of increased utilisation and medical inflation.


“Discovery Health has been successful in managing these complex issues and DHMS continues to perform exceptionally well across all key metrics. Our strategic focus during 2013 will be on continuing to provide the best of care to all our members while enhancing benefits, and rewarding people for maintaining good health, and lastly, ensuring access and affordability,” added Broomberg.


New entry point plan


DHMS is also introducing a new plan in the KeyCare series targeted at the lower income market, with contributions starting from R450 a month. The KeyCare Access plan will offer low a low-cost entry point for lower income earners and people who are uninsured.


The plan will provide cover for GP visits, emergencies and accidental trauma in a private hospital, childbirth and care for newborns in private hospitals and elective procedures in Discovery’s contracted network of state facilities.


Other medical scheme increases


Discovery is not the only medical scheme to announce increases for 2013. Others include:


•    Fedhealth and Momentum Health both announced an average increase of 7.9%.
•    Profmed, the medical scheme for professionals, announced a weighted increase of 8.56%.
•    Medshield Medical Scheme said average contributions would increase by 7.5%.
•    Topmed announced a weighted average increase of 9.47%
•    According to reports Compcare increased their contributions by 6.9% and Pharos 10.8%

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