Queensland Country Health Fund welcomes health reforms

Some of the most significant health insurance reforms in 15 years have been announced by Health Minister Greg Hunt on Friday and the Health reforms deliver good outcomes for regional people.

A range of changes have been proposed which are focused on improving affordability of health insurance premiums and reducing complexity.

Queensland Country Health Fund CEO, Aaron Newman said “Some of the changes will particularly benefit people living in regional and rural areas as insurers will now be able to pay benefits for travel and accommodation for those people who have to travel to city or metro areas to access hospital and medical care”.

People in the bush have stated they get less value from health insurance than people in city areas due to the limited private hospitals and allied health services available and this change will make accessing health services a bit easier and more affordable.

“As the largest health fund based in regional Queensland we will be looking to introduce travel and accommodation benefits for our Members as soon as possible which will be a great compliment to the concessional unit accommodation we have available for Members in Townsville and Brisbane,” Aaron said.

The Minister has also delivered great outcomes with the medical device manufacturers with savings negotiated for the private healthcare industry of $188 million in 2018 which will be directly passed onto consumers in what is expected to be the lowest average premium increase in a decade in April 2018.

These reform changes are expected to provide a boost in confidence for consumers in the value of health insurance resulting in an increase in policyholders in 2018/19 following a period of stagnated growth for insurers.