Everything you need to know about renewing your Medical Aid Scheme

– Tanya Motlafe (Director, Cornerstone Healthcare Consulting Services)

If you’re an existing member of a Medical Aid Scheme, you’re probably aware that most medical schemes allow you to upgrade or downgrade your medical aid benefits once a year. Over the next two months, it’s important that you review both your current plan option and the stability of your current Medical Scheme. Members can either do the research themselves, or better yet, communicate with their accredited Healthcare Broker to make sure that the most suitable plan option is selected for the year ahead, and that their existing Medical Scheme is financially stable.

These are some of the questions you should be asking yourself before making any decisions regarding your current Medical Scheme, as any changes you make now will have an impact on both your medical aid benefits and financial needs in the forthcoming year:

  1. Do I have any medical procedures planned for the year ahead, and does my current plan cover this?
  2. Am I considering starting a family?
  3. What benefits are priorities for me? Do I need a hospital plan only or do I need a comprehensive medical aid offering day-to-day benefits as well?
  4.  What can I afford?
  5. Can I afford to cover the day-to-day benefits from my own pocket?
  6. What is Gap Cover and do I need it?

During the next two months, you have an opportunity to review your personal circumstances and how they may have changed, and whether this will affect your current medical plan.

Downgrading your plan may save you some money, but are you sure that you and your family have sufficient cover? Whilst upgrading your plan, may offer more benefits and provide peace of mind, but what impact will this have on your financial planning? It’s also important to know that changing your plan option or Medical Scheme is not compulsory and you shouldn’t feel forced into changing it if you’re completely satisfied. However, do your homework to ensure that you are aware of any benefit changes that apply to your current plan.

Making these decisions requires a thorough understanding of both your personal circumstances and the medical aid industry. Your specialist Healthcare Broker can support you in comparing costs and benefits across various Medical Schemes available in the industry, and to ensure that any changes are made within the window periods available by the Medical Aid Schemes.

At Cornerstone Healthcare Consulting Services, we will assist you on a one-to-one basis, offering personal assistance and providing you with all the necessary information and options for you to make an informed decision. We are contracted with all major Medical Aid Schemes. Our recommendations are therefore unbiased and are based on a full medical aid needs analysis. If you need assistance, please contact us or call us on 011 794 6611 to schedule an appointment with one of our specialist consultants.

Do your homework now, so that you can unwind and enjoy the upcoming festive season.

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