Everyone has very different needs when it comes to health coverage and medical aid plans and those needs are not static either, they usually change as we do; as we get older, as we start a family or as we simply feel like we need a little more security and coverage and can afford to buy it where we may not have been able to in the past.
So while you may have been with your current medical aid plan for quite a while now, as the end of the year approaches it might be a good time to take a couple of hours to review your current coverage to make sure that it still fits your needs.
Should You Change your Medical Aid in 2017?
If you do review your plan, find it a bit lacking and start thinking about changing your plan, or even your medical aid provider in general you will hardly be alone. According to one recent study conducted by Accenture, it’s actually a growing trend, as of those questioned about their ‘loyalty’ to their current medical health plan 60% reported they had made a change in the last five years, and 51% of those switches had been made in the last two. You are not alone it is a very wise decision and one that is better answered by speaking with a Specialist Medical Aid Consultant.
What Made People Switch?
The Accenture study also asked its participants why they chose to make the switch. And the answers might surprise you. You may think that most were looking to save money. And indeed some were, a little under 40%. But even more people cited the biggest reason for making a switch to be a lack of service.
Surprising huh? But many people reported having been frustrated by all of the following:
- Difficult claims processes
- Slow claims payment
- Unclear terms and conditions of coverage
- Lack of choice of medical providers
- Lack of customer service
- Rude or unhelpful customer service
- Lack of online options for plan management
- Lack of online options for claims submissions
And they were frustrated to the point that they switched medical aid providers altogether. So these are also considerations you may want to add to your personal review of your current plan. Would you prefer to be able to chat online or text for customer support rather than have to wait on hold on the telephone for an hour? If so, is that something on offer to you now? And what if you wanted to change to the fabulous new GP that all of your friends have been raving about? Would you be able to? Keep in mind there is much more to a great medical aid plan than just a good price.
Making the Big Switch
If, for whatever reasons, you do decide that it’s time for a new medical aid plan then according to many experts the end of the year can be a great time to make the switch. But it may be a little more complicated than you expected. While almost all Medical Aid providers are perfectly amenable to the idea of customers terminating their existing plan to switch to another, there is usually more to it than simply ringing up and telling someone that you want to.
While the average cancellation process is usually rather straightforward, there is often a waiting period imposed before you can join another scheme. This may be anywhere from 30 days to three months in general and up to, as the law allows, up to 12 months for a specific chronic condition. So make sure you understand all of this before you actually go ahead and cancel your current coverage.
So to answer your question “Should You Change your Medical Aid in 2017?” it may in fact be a great idea but the best answer you will get is from a Specialist Medical Aid Consultant who will find you the best Medical Aid for your changing circumstances.