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Health Insurance News

09/02/2011 - 1:19pm

A recently released industry report shows the largest 5 health funds account for 84.1% of the market. This leaves 27 insurers sharing the remaining 15.9% of the market. The report says that despite their size the smaller insurers play an important role in the market.

There are currently more than 30,000 complying health insurance products on offer to consumers. Not all these products are available to everybody as certain health funds only sell into niche markets or are restricted as to who can buy their products.

09/02/2011 - 1:18pm

The Government will soon be approving the health funds’ applications for a price rise. The Government will make the usual noises about keeping the health funds honest and keeping the price rise to a minimum. With over 70% of the market covered by for-profit health funds it will be difficult to see the government overcoming the desire of the industry to maintain profit margins following a period where fund surpluses nudged a billion dollars.

07/02/2011 - 11:10am

A recent article in The Age newspaper by Peter Jean on 19th January has lighted the pitfalls of health funds selling “Exclusionary” products.

The article expresses concerns by senior industry officials that the surge in the number of people taking out exclusionary products will undermine the value of health insurance. The implication is that consumers may not be aware of what is covered and what is not covered. It will only be at the time they attempt to make a claim that they will find they could be out of pocket tens of thousands of dollars.

08/12/2010 - 12:00am

NIB Holdings Limited (nib) announced that it had withdrawn its proposal for GMHBA after failing to win support for its revised $180 million proposal from the Board of the Geelong-based mutual health fund.

nib Managing Director Mark Fitzgibbon said that nib believed strongly that a merger with GMHBA was in the interests of both nib and GMHBA and would help to reduce pressure on premium increases.

20/10/2010 - 12:00am

In the recently released September quarterly statistical report of the Private Health Insurance Administrative Council 10,064,043 people, or 44.8% of the population, were covered by hospital treatment cover. This is the first time there has ever been more than 10 million people in Australia with hospital insurance since the introduction of Medicare.

Surprisingly, 11,647,801 people or 51.8% of the population had some form of general treatment cover. General treatment pays benefits for things like dental, optical, physiotherapy, orthotics, hearing aids and natural therapies.

15/10/2010 - 12:00am

In the September quarter 5,162 people had their Lifetime Health Cover loading removed, after ten years of paying a loading. The Federal Government changed the rules last year to remove the LHC loading after paying the premium loading for 10 years. This can result in a significant reduction to the amount people are paying their health fund.

You may have to apply to your health fund to have the loading removed if you have switched funds a number of times over the last 10 years. If you require any further information or assistance contact HICA on 1300 44 22 01.

05/08/2010 - 7:05pm

Opposition Leader Tony Abbot today unveiled his health and hospitals policy package, vowing to better fund and reform the sector.  His key $3.1 billion promise will see 2800 new public hospital beds delivered over four years, in line with the Australian Medical Association's recommendations.

05/08/2010 - 6:11pm

The Federal Government, has announced its plan to take a $300 million ''special dividend'' from government-owned health fund, Medibank Private and has brought strong criticism from the private health industry.

Martin Laverty, the chief executive of Catholic Health, said the effects of the $300 million taken from Medibank Private would be felt by the all users of private health services.

17/06/2010 - 10:09pm

Health Insurance Consultants Australia (HICA) today announced the launch of their Tax Saver Selector.

The Tax Saver Selector has been developed for people seeking health cover for tax saving purposes, bringing together a select range of  great value hospital policies that cost less than the Medicare Levy  Surcharge.

12/06/2010 - 3:20pm

The Federal Government has advised that the implementation date for its proposed changes to the Private Health Insurance Rebate Tiers legislation has been revised due to the rejection of the legislation by the Senate to date.

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