More South African medical aids have announced the average fee increase for members in 2017 – including the full price listing for Discovery schemes.
According to medical aid comparison site and information group IHS Medical, all major medical aids are hiking fees by double digits in 2017.
So far, the following averages have been announced:
- Discovery – 10.2%
- MediHelp – 10.9%
- Momentum – 11.0%
- Bonitas – 11.9%
Notably, Discovery and Momentum are the only two medical aid schemes to show an operating profit in the last year – which may lead to big hikes from the other schemes in the coming months.
Discovery Health was the first major scheme to announce price hikes for 2017, with monthly premiums increasing between 9.9% and 14.9% across its range of products.
Momentum said it will hike its fees by 8.9% to 15.0% across its products next year.
The industry has reported a major rise in claims over the past year, as more people have signed up for private healthcare.
Data published by the Institute of Race Relations (IRR) shows that the majority of South Africans are not covered by a medical aid.
The report showed that out of a population of 54,432,000 South Africans, only 17.4% of the population is medically covered – 9,458,000 – leaving 44,974,000 people without cover.
Discovery has attributed the rise in claims to more people being admitted to hospitals, using more scheme benefits, abuse, fraud and wastage. This has prompted the business to tighten its policies, and possibly reduce benefits or hospitals available on its network.
Discovery Health claims a 54% share of South Africa’s medical aid market, with close on three million customers.
This is what it’s members can expect to pay on their products for 2017: