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Blow to cheaper primary health care – Discovery prevented from expanding approved services

Cheaper primary health insurance plans, which offer less cover than traditional medical scheme packages, require an exemption from the Medical Schemes Act by the CMS. In a recent ruling by the appeal board of the Council for Medical Schemes, Discovery has been dealt a blow by a ruling preventing it from expanding low-cost medical aid services.

In a radio interview Hylton Kallner, CEO of Discovery SA explains that the case is one between the Board of Healthcare Funders (BHF) and accountable medical schemes in terms of the license that’s been given to Discovery Life to sell low-cost life insurance and the process they went through in order to get that exemption. “Essentially the ruling of the appeal board that adjudicated on this has said that the exemption wasn’t exceptional at the time (which is one of the requirements) and therefore the Council and ourselves have got to go back to the drawing board.” He also emphasizes that clients who are already on the plan are not affected by the decision.

Kallner further states most employers want to cover their staff within the scope of primary healthcare needs. He believes these products will move into the regulated, medical scheme environment in time.

Click here to listen to the 702 radio interview.

Click here to view a eNCA interview with Kallner.

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