The Council for Medical Scheme (CMS) has increased the 2024 medical aid rates by over 5%. The medical schemes are still recovering from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Senior Manager of benefit management at CMS, Mondi Govuzela, has expressed concerns over the decrease in medical scheme membership.
Govuzela says the consistent rise in private healthcare costs is also negatively affecting the industry.
“One of the main drivers for cost increases in medical schemes it is important to know that we have noted over time an increase in the chronic disease prevalence in the population covered by the medical schemes. The data that is collected states that scheme in 2014, there were about 13% of medical scheme beneficiaries who had a chronic disease and by 2020 that number decreased to 16%, clearly that put a pressure on medical schemes in terms of affordability and put pressure on continuity increases.”
“You would have noted as mentioned now that there has been a stagnation in a membership. So what typically happen is that the people who are already in the medical schemes are the old and sick they remain in the medical schemes and young people will typically leave the schemes or will delay joining a medical schemes that then create a problem where medical schemes there is an inadequate in the medical schemes’ pull,” explains Govuzela.
VIDEO: Annual medical scheme adjustments:
-Reporting by Matimu Khosa