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Choosing a Medical Aid in South Africa


 

  

  

Cash Back Medical Aids

 

Cash Back Medical AidsIt is a sad fact that medical cover can be extremely expensive and many people simply cannot afford comprehensive plans. Thankfully, some medical schemes offer consumers more affordable options, such as cash back medical aids.

 

These are not strictly speaking medical aid plans because they do not cover the cost of treatment. Rather, they pay members cash in certain circumstances.

 

What kinds of cash back plans exist?

 

There are basically two ways in which it is possible to obtain cash from a medical scheme:

 

1. Hospital cash back insurance

      Many consumers find that their hospital bills are not paid in full by their medical schemes. Many medical aids pay only approved medical aid rates but the truth of the matter is that the cost of hospitals, doctors and specialists often far exceed these rates; in many cases the actual charge can be four times as high as the approved medical aid rate! Cash back insurance does not pay these bills, however. Instead the pay their members a fixed amount per day spent in hospital. The amount differs depending on the insurer and the specific policy chosen. The member may do with this cash whatever he wants. He is not obliged to spend it on medical expenses. He may even use the money for a holiday, for example! This type of insurance should be considered in the following instances:

 

  •      People with no medical aid cover should think about insurance. It may not pay the entire bill, but it will certainly help to ease the financial stress that goes with hospitalization. Many people opt for insurance to cover themselves against loss of income in case they are hospitalized. 
  •       People with limited medical cover can use this type of insurance to cover themselves if their hospital bills are more that the amount paid by their medical schemes. 

Most companies require that potential members must younger than a specified age, normally sixty five. When nearing that age this insurance is probably not a good option.

 

2.    Cash back from medical aids

      Many medical schemes reward their members with cash if  they meet certain criteria. When evaluating various medical plans it may be wise to ask the scheme just what their reward programs are and how members qualify for payments in terms of those programs. Here are some examples:

             Discovery HealthThe MedSaver plan from Discovery Health allow members to save up to twenty five percent on the cost of over-the-counter medicines if they make use of prescribed pharmacies. Just opting for this discount can earn members a cash reward!

 

              Momentum Health runs the HealthReturns program that promise to pay members up to five thousand four hundred rand if they agree to a free health assessment.

 

             Hollard Insurance pays their members a reward of twenty percent of their monthly premiums if they do not claim for five years. In addition, a cash payment of up to five thousand is made for each day spent in hospital and this benefit can remain active for up to 180 days. There are conditions, however.

 

Cash back medical aids, although not true medical aid plans, can be very useful in making provision for unexpected medical expenses or medical bills that will not be paid in full by the medical scheme. These plans are flexible and affordable. © Medical Aid Plan

 

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