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Health premiums set to rise again

AAP  |  25 Jan 2018Text size  Decrease  Increase  |  
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BRISBANE - [AAP] Medibank (ASX: MPL) and NIB (ASX: NHF) will increase private health insurance premiums by slightly less than the federal government's approved rate in the latest round of rate hikes.

The federal government has approved average weighted premium increases of 3.95 per cent from April 1.

Medibank, the former state-owned insurer which listed on the share market in 2014, says its premiums will rise by an average 3.88 per cent--its lowest hike in 17 years.

Fellow ASX-listed insurer nib will lift its premiums by an average 3.93 per cent, with premiums at its GU Health subsidiary rising by an average 2.84 per cent.

But Bupa's average premium rise is 3.99 per cent, equating to about $2 more a week for singles and $4 a week for families.

Medibank chief executive Craig Drummond said private health costs have increased by around five per cent over the past 12 months.

"These cost increases are largely being driven by medical inflation and an increase in the frequency of people seeking treatment," he said.

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NIB chief executive Mark Fitzgibbon said an ageing population, rising chronic disease, increasing use of services and the cost of new medical technology were also driving increased claims costs for health insurers.

"We've worked hard to keep our premium changes as low as possible and this is the fourth consecutive year we've been able to deliver an increase lower than the previous year and the lowest increase in 15 years," Mr Fitzgibbon said.

Under the government's average weighted measure, a single person will pay around $1.40 extra a week, while families will pay around $2.75 extra for their private health insurance.
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said this was the lowest annual premium change in 17 years.

"More than 13 million Australians have private health insurance and it is vital that cover is affordable and provides value for money," Mr Hunt said in a statement.

 

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© [2018] Australian Associated Press Pty Limited (AAP) or its Licensors. This is the Morningstar service with content provided by AAP where indicated. AAP reserves all rights, including copyright, in services provided by it. The information in the service is for personal use only, does not constitute financial product advice (whether general or personal) and may not be re-written, copied, re-sold or re-distributed, framed, linked or otherwise used whether for compensation of any kind or not, without the prior written permission of AAP. You should seek advice from a professional financial adviser before making decision to acquire or dispose of a financial product.

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© 2021 Australian Associated Press Pty Limited (AAP) or its Licensors. This is the Morningstar service with content provided by AAP where indicated. AAP reserves all rights, including copyright, in services provided by it. The information in the service is for personal use only, does not constitute financial product advice (whether general or personal) and may not be re-written, copied, re-sold or re-distributed, framed, linked or otherwise used whether for compensation of any kind or not, without the prior written permission of AAP. You should seek advice from a professional financial adviser before making decision to acquire or dispose of a financial product.

This service is published for general information purposes only without assuming a duty of care. AAP is not in the business of providing financial product advice (whether personal or general advice), and gives no warranty, guarantee or other representation about the accuracy of the information or images contained in this service. AAP is not liable for errors, omissions in, delays or interruptions to or cessation of the services through negligence or otherwise. The globe symbol and "AAP" are registered trademarks.

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