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Private health insurance reforms
The health insurance industry is currently undergoing considerable reform with the key objective being improving members’ understanding of their cover and making cover comparison easier for those considering joining. This initiative (along with the others being introduced) support Navy Health’s focus on value and transparency for members.
New classification of hospital covers
From 1 April 2019, Hospital products will begin to be classified into the below categories. The aim is to allow consumers to easily compare and choose a policy which best suits their needs.
The classification sets the minimum standards of included treatments:
Gold cover is top cover where you are covered for everything (where Medicare pays a benefit).
A mid-level of cover with some exclusions, such as pregnancy, joint replacements and weight loss surgery.
A mid-level of cover with more exclusions, such as dental surgery, heart and vascular surgeries, lung and chest.
Basic cover is minimal and can have considerable restrictions.
The level of excess on a product does not change its classification. A product may be considered a ‘Plus’ policy (inside Silver, Bronze or Basic) where it meets the classification and provides some additional treatment.
We are in the process of reviewing the suite of products currently offered and will advise all members about any changes in early 2019.
Natural Therapies changes
The Government has also mandated that, from 1 April 2019, all health insurers will not be able to pay a benefit on the following natural therapies – Alexander technique, aromatherapy, Bowen therapy, Buteyko, Feldenkrais, Western herbalism, homeopathy, iridology, kinesiology, naturopathy, Pilates, reflexology, Rolfing, shiatsu, tai chi, and yoga. This decision has been made due to the lack of clinical evidence in their effectiveness. We will send further information regarding the change in early 2019.
These changes are significant and we are committed to ensuring our Members are well informed about their policies. We will continue to focus on offering high standards of service, quality cover and value for our members. For further information on these changes, we encourage you to go to http://health.gov.au/
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