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What Are the Differences Between Hospital Plans and Medical Aids?

With health insurance, hospital insurance, cash-plans, hospital plans and medical aids to choose from, you may be slightly confused when it comes to the best way to be financial prepared for health expenses, so allow us to discuss a few important factors you need to know.


Understanding the Differences

Let’s start by explaining insurance. You make a monthly contribution in return for the cover provider’s commitment to pay out for expenses claimed related to an incident, such as a vehicle accident, house burned down or valuables stolen. Likewise, if you take out health cover or insurance, it normally pays out for expenses related to specific dreaded diseases, such as cancer or HIV/AIDs. Hospital insurance is just limited to expenses related directly to treatments in hospital.

Hospital cash-back plans provide you with a way to secure income during the time of hospital treatment. You can use the money to pay for the health care costs and any other expenses during the time. Hospital plans provide you with cover or medical aid for in-hospital treatments and medicine prescribed in hospital or collected from the hospital pharmacy. No payments are made for out-of-hospital and normal day-to-day medical costs.

A medical aid is not medical insurance. It entails membership of a medical scheme and in return, for your smaller monthly contributions, the scheme undertakes to pay the medical bills as per the terms and conditions. The scheme has various benefit options of which some have more comprehensive hospital plans included, whilst others focus more on preventative and out-of-hospital benefits.

Medical schemes don’t operate on a profit basis and any reserves they have at the end of the financial year are used to offer the members lower tariffs or to ensure that the statutory reserve of 25% is attained. The schemes also use the reserves to broaden the service offering to the members.


Which Option is the Best?

Considering that you may not belong to more than one hospital plan or medical aid you will want to make the right decision. People mostly choose insurance or cash-back plans because they feel they don’t use medical facilities on a regular basis. They also feel that the contributions may be too expensive for their budget.

However, considering the cost of one doctor’s visit and a trip to the pharmacy for the prescribed medicine, you’ll agree that in many instances, such already makes up a third of your contribution. A full medical aid offers you many opportunities to save money, including add-on free benefits such as annual health screenings, vaccinations, weight loss management programmes, pregnancy support, full payment of ER visits for children, and hospital treatments. Such schemes have wide Designated Service Provider (DSP) networks, ensuring that you will get top medical treatment across the country.

In addition, unlike with many hospital plans, the medical aids offer cover for the after-care when you are released from hospital too.


What KeyHealth Can Offer You

We offer exceptionally affordable comprehensive medical aid, which includes the hospital plan. The differences in our benefits plans relate to the limits for each treatment rather than the limiting the range of treatments. Gain full assurance of mind that you and your family will have access to emergency, day-to-day and preventative healthcare 365 days a year. Contact us for more information about our packages and discover how you can benefit from joining KeyHealth.