In today’s tough economic environment, people look for ways to cut costs and stretch their budget. In many instances, this means considering a cheaper medical aid plan. But, cheaper does not always mean better as many other factors besides price play a vital role in your decision.
When you shop around for a medical aid plan that suits your pocket, it is important to think carefully about the following aspects.
The healthcare needs of you or your family differ and change during various life stages. A young, single individual’s health needs could differ significantly from those of a couple, a young family with tots, a family with teens and older children still living at home, or an older person who needs more medical attention.
Healthcare needs: It is impossible to predict the future. But it is important to assess your current health condition, family history of serious health conditions, and your lifestyle choices. This will help you to form a picture of specialists you’ll potentially need to consult, treatment you may need to receive, and chronic medicine you might have to take. And of course, life and accidents happen.
Budget: If you choose a hospital plan, can you cover your day-to-day medical expenses? If you choose a savings plan and the savings run out, can you afford the co-payments or shortfalls? A general rule of thumb is that your medical aid contribution should not exceed 10% of your monthly income.
Access to medical facilities:
Most medical aids also offer network medical aid plans where you are required to use specific hospitals, pharmacies, general practitioners, or specialists. If you choose a network plan, which is usually slightly cheaper, make sure you have access to the medical facilities on the medical scheme’s list of providers.
What you consider important: Is it important to know that your medical aid plan covers emergencies and emergency transport, or not? Is it important that your plan makes provision for contraceptives? Is cover for radiology in and out of hospital an important factor?
All the above questions and considerations can help you make an informed decision about the right medical aid plan for you.
Medihelp offers a range of 11 medical aid plans, each with various benefits. Our vital plans are ideal for first-time buyers of medical aid, our savings plans are for those who want to manage their expenses themselves, and our comprehensive plans cater for more extensive healthcare needs.
On MedVital, MedAdd, and MedElect, even if you have more than two children, you only pay for two babies, tots, and teens until they turn 18. You also pay child dependant rates until children reach the age of 26. And on MedElect, students can get cover for under R1 000 per month.
Learn more about our affordable plans here.