Is Hospital Cover Enough Cover? This is a very good question to consider and get advice on, otherwise you may be left in a very dark place,not only with your health but also your finances. Even if you only spend a few minutes looking it does not take long to figure out that more than ever the number of different medical aid companies, medical aid schemes and plans within those schemes is pretty large, sometimes very confusingly so.
However the one thing that most medical aid companies do have in common when it comes to the coverage plans they offer is that the lowest tiers – meaning the lowest priced plans, are ones that offer hospital cover only.
These are the plans that offer coverage for some – not always all by the way – of the costs associated with a hospitalization, one which is often made on an emergency or at least urgent and maybe not expected basis. They don’t offer coverage for any other, out of hospital, services though. Basically it’s like taking out the minimum amount of legal insurance coverage on your car or home, bare bones, yes, but at least it’s there.
Who is Likely to Opt for a Hospital Only Plan?
There are basically two groups of people most likely to be attracted to hospital only medical plans; younger, healthy people who have rarely dealt with an illness or injury and those on a tighter budget looking to keep their monthly outgoings in check as far as possible. This in many ways indeed seems to make sense. Or does it? Are they really saving themselves money?
Where Hospital Only Coverage Can Fail
OK, so you have hospital only coverage and end up in the hospital. Very good thing that you had it then isn’t it? And it will indeed be very helpful but increasingly, as average medical costs rise, it may not be enough.
Take the services you receive inside the hospital for example. That the doctors – and surgeons if you have surgery – will bill you and the hospital will bill you no doubt you expect. What you might not except are the separate bills for radiology (x-rays, MRIs etc.) and laboratories (blood work, pre-surgical testing) and other services, and even personnel, that you didn’t think of. All of them charge their own set of fees and increasingly those fees are higher than those paid out by a hospital only plan.
Then there are further expenses after you leave the hospital. Many people leave on at least one or two medications whatever they were hospitalized for and often there are aftercare treatments needed. Those costs will almost certainly not be covered by a hospital only plan. And they can quickly mount up.
Weighing Your Options
Once these scenarios are brought into the equation the case for saving money with a hospital cover only plan, even if you are young and healthy, becomes a little weaker to say the least. Which can you more easily afford? A little extra a month to purchase a ‘higher level’ medical aid, or a gap cover policy designed to cover in hospital shortfalls at least, or a pile of bills that you did not expect if you do end up in the hospital? While the final decision is the individual’s you probably owe it to yourself to at least research your options a little more carefully before accepting ‘bare bones’ coverage as the best alternative.
Is Hospital Cover Enough Cover? We think not, give us a call for a free consultation for the most cost effective solution