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Helpful Guidelines when Seeking Personalised Medical Aid

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For the novice, selecting the most appropriate medical aid can be challenging. The following guidelines should help you find a product that meets your needs. It is an unfortunate truth that, in the wake of rampant inflation and static wages, affordability now has a significant influence on the purchases most South Africans make. Sadly, this financial constraint also applies to private healthcare cover from the country’s medical schemes.

In practice, a combination of austerity and the COVID-19 pandemic have recently led to a decrease rather than the usual growth in the number of people receiving assistance with their private healthcare costs. Instead, many have reverted to seeking care from the overburdened public sector. However, recognising this trend, most medical schemes have been working hard to develop ways to overcome the price barrier.

For those fortunate enough to work for a company that participates in a group scheme, the impact of rising premiums has been minimal and offset mainly by the group discount and employer’s contribution. For others, like the self-employed, there are currently 18 open schemes that anyone not already enrolled in another medical aid is free to join. However, if you wish to choose an open scheme and a product that will best meet your and your family’s needs, you might benefit from some experienced guidance.

 

Let the Benefits Guide Your Choice of Medical Aid

No, this does not mean that the premium price should not play a role in your decision, only that it should not be the sole factor on which you base your choice. It would not be wise to choose an option you can barely afford, as missing a premium for any reason could leave you and any dependents without support with your private healthcare expenses. Instead, it would be wiser to adopt the following stepwise approach to ensure you make an informed decision:

  • Identify your needs: This is the first step and requires you to list the known and anticipated needs of everyone to be included in your membership application. Look for specifics. Perhaps you have young children who might need specialised dentistry like braces, or maybe you are considering starting a family soon. In such cases, you should check how much you can claim for orthodontic treatment and the value of the maternity benefits.

If you and your loved ones enjoy good general health, perhaps your only concern will be the cost of surgery and hospitalisation. Also, remember that all medical aids are legally obliged to provide certain prescribed minimum benefits (PMBs), including diagnosing, treating, and caring for 26 chronic illnesses, like diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis.

  • Compare quotes: The Internet has simplified this step. Typing a few personal details into an online form on a comparison site will return multiple quotes. The service is free and imposes no obligations. Don’t just grab the cheapest. It is less likely to satisfy your requirements. Instead, select all those you can afford. Next, compare their benefits in detail and choose the product that ticks all your boxes.

 

Check Out the Provider Before Joining Your Chosen Medical Aid

In its heydays, this vital industry consisted of around 200 companies. Today, that number has dwindled to just 76, due mainly to insolvency resulting from mismanagement and fierce competition. Before sealing a deal, you should check your chosen medical aid company’s bone fides.

One option is to seek the experience of friends. How satisfied are they with their choice? Does it fully meet their needs and pay their claims timeously without quibbling? In practice, these are the very reasons that so many South Africans have chosen to put their trust in KeyHealth Medical Aid.

One of the founding members of this industry, KeyHealth Medical began operating in 1968, and, unlike many of our competitors, through the good governance of our trustees, we have consistently met our obligations and avoided the need for a merger to survive. Today, almost 56 years later, we are still focused on developing innovative ways to give our members more bang for their buck.

 

Choosing KeyHealth Medical Products Ensures Confidence

We have an A- international credit rating, and our solvency ratio (the percentage of premium income remaining after all claims are paid) is more than double the legal requirement. If you are seeking reliability, generous benefits and some invaluable additional services at no charge, why not view our impressive range of 2024 products? One of these should be perfect for your family’s needs.

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