12 June 2016
Government private health insurance announcement a win for consumers
"Today’s announcement that a re-elected Turnbull government will act to make private health insurance more transparent and easy to understand is a big win for consumers and will benefit the wider health system," CHA CEO, Suzanne Greenwood said today.
“Private health insurance plays an important role in Australia’s health system. With around half the population being covered by private health insurance, it is vital that consumers have a good understanding of what they are covered for.”
“The range and complexity of health fund products, including the options for exclusions and limitations, means that the vast majority of consumers do not understand the scope of coverage of their insurance product.”
“When consumers do need hospital treatment, many can be disappointed to find that they do not have the level of cover they thought and face the prospect of significant out of pocket costs.”
“We therefore enthusiastically welcome the proposal to categorise products as either gold, silver or bronze depending on the level of cover provided, which will give consumers the confidence to know that they have indeed got the cover they were expecting to have.”
“We also welcome proposals to address the needs of people who live in rural and remote areas and to require third party aggregators to disclose their fees. Private health insurance regulation needs to promote a viable, diverse and dynamic private sector,” Mrs Greenwood added.
“The government’s private health insurance survey showed that many consumers were concerned about the value proposition of their private health insurance. These reforms, once implemented, should go a considerable way to addressing those concerns”, Mrs Greenwood added.
Catholic Health Australia represents Australia’s largest non-government grouping of hospitals, aged and community care services, providing approximately 10% of hospital and aged care services in Australia, including around 30 % of private hospital care as well as around 5% of public hospital care.
CONTACT: Patrick Tobin mobile: 0418 251 509