Once you’ve identified that it’s necessary, if not essential, to have a private medical assistance plan, you’re still left with several critical questions. What is the right or best choice for you – a hospital plan or a comprehensive medical aid membership? What about a hospital cash plan?
Regular Cost Increases are a Certainty
The first thing to remember is that medical care and in-hospital procedures are expensive and will increase as time passes, usually at least annually, while the price of medicine increases as and when the manufacturers or distributors hike costs.
Can You Afford Hospital Charges?
There is absolutely no guarantee that your income will increase annually or keep pace with the increasing cost of medical care. There’s even less likelihood that your earnings will overtake the percentage by which all things medical cost related are likely to increase. It’s evident that it’s unlikely that you’d be able to fund an undetermined stay in a private hospital, where you’ll be charged for every procedure that’s performed. Everything adds up – doctor’s bill, anaesthetist’s time, your stay in a ward, use of an operating theatre, and smaller items like swabs, bandages, and syringes used during the course of your treatment in hospital, as well as medication.
In solving this costly conundrum, the best option is a medical aid membership that covers not only your in-hospital costs, but also assists in funding out-of-hospital, day-to-day, and chronic medical expenses. As in other instances, you get what you pay for. Not everyone can afford fully comprehensive, all-inclusive, and virtually unlimited medical aid cover, which is why medical schemes offer a variety of plans and options with varying benefits and monthly contributions, as we do at KeyHealth.
Our medical aid plans are designed to be simple and easy to comprehend. Each option caters for different statuses – singles, couples, families, and single parents. Likewise, our plans are compiled to take care of different needs, for different budgets. Comparisons and choosing are equally straightforward. All the essential information may be quickly accessed on our web pages, as well as guidelines that alert you to factors that you should consider. All plans include hospital cover for a range of in-hospital procedures and emergency hospitalisation. Claim limits and terms are clearly stated.
A hospital plan provides medical cost cover (depending on the plan’s stipulations) for a member who becomes an inpatient in hospital, and only then. No out-of-hospital cover or day-to-day medical expenses and benefits apply. Hospital plans are considerably less expensive than full medical aid scheme membership, but the benefits are limited to those stated, applying only to hospitalisation.
Hospital Cash Plans
These plans have no direct bearing on, or benefits for, medical procedures and allied services. Hospital cash plans pay a set daily amount to claimants who are hospitalised for the duration of their stay in hospital, usually only commencing after the first few days of hospitalisation and not from day one. Funds may be used for any purpose, from school fees to feeding the family and, of course, hospital costs, but this is at the discretion of the recipient.
However, it’s always wisest to pick the best plan that you can afford, but one that nevertheless meets your primary requirements.