Which Are the
Best Medical Aids?
It is an unfortunate fact that medical services
are extremely expensive.
There are very few people that can afford to pay
for treatment from their own pockets. Even an ordinary visit to a GP can cost several hundred rand, medication not
Hospital treatment is even worse, cost wise.
Private hospitals and the attending surgeons and specialists can cost a small fortune. For example, a heart bypass
can cost up to half a million rand!
The only solution for people that do not want to
be at the mercy of the public health system is to become a member of a medical scheme.
There are many fine schemes in South Africa and
they all offer a variety of plans that are designed to suit the needs and budgets of just about
How to choose the best possible medical scheme
It would be mischievous to state that there is a
single best medical aid plan. The best plan is different for every person; one that suit their unique needs and one
that can be afforded. There are a few important factors to keep in mind when evaluating the various plans on
- The first consideration should be the amount
that is available for medical cover. When reviewing the budget, it is vital to remember that good health is the
single most important asset that any person has. It would therefore be foolish to argue that there is not
enough money to pay for comprehensive cover while the family enjoys luxuries such as regular holidays,
expensive meals at restaurants and other luxuries. Medical cover should be paid before any such luxuries can be
- In order to choose the best possible plan it
is recommended that every member of the family is scheduled for a thorough medical assessment. This assessment
should be conducted by an experienced medical practitioner and should include the family’s medical history. In
this way latent conditions can be identified and care could be taken to choose a plan that will cover the
treatment for such conditions.
- It is advisable to only deal with schemes
that have a long history in the country. There are schemes that offer fabulous benefits at almost unbelievable
rates but they rarely honour their promises.
- It is often very difficult to compare the
various plans. One excellent solution to this problem is to engage the services of an independent medical
broker. These professionals are able to explain the various benefits and shortcomings of the various plans in
clear language and they can help select the plan that will best suit the needs of the
- It is always wise to obtain several
quotations from different schemes. There are some excellent websites that collect the relevant personal
information only once and then produce a number of quotations. These quotations are in a standard format and
therefore easier to compare with each other.
Experts agree that it is best to choose a plan that can be upgraded or
downgraded when circumstances change.
Why medical cover is so
All South Africans have full access to the public health system. The sad
truth, however, is that this system is seriously overburdened, resulting in long waiting times and a restriction on
the types of treatments and medication that can be supplied.
For quality health care there is no option other than to use the
private health system, which is
very expensive and only readily affordable to those that are members medical aids. © Medical Aid
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