WESTFUND Health Insurance members will have a reprieve from premium increases.
(min cost $8)
Login or signup to continue reading
The health insurance provider will postpone the planned increases to annual premiums until August 1, 2022, doubling down on its 2020 premium deferral at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Westfund chief executive officer Mark Genovese said the fund had already provided a range of support measures throughout the pandemic totalling more than $12 million in benefits to members.
This latest deferral will bring that support up to $15 million.
"As a member-owned, not-for-profit health fund, we recognise the enormous impact COVID-19 has had on the livelihoods of members and their ability to access quality healthcare services," Mr Genovese said.
"We have a proud history dating back to 1881 of standing up for our members when they need us most and our latest premium deferral is just another example of our commitment to them.
"Westfund deferred premium increases at the start of the pandemic saving members over $6 million. We have since strengthened our support by recently returning $5.1 million to eligible members and we are now deferring premium increases again.
"At just 2.4 per cent, our planned 2022 premium increase was already one of the lowest in the industry while our health-care coverage continues to be one of the strongest nationwide."
In addition to delaying the premium increase, Westfund has also expanded its range of health and wellbeing programs targeting mental and virtual telehealth consultations to support members during the pandemic.
"Our primary objective is to help our members however we can through this period, and we have developed a series of measures specifically targeted at supporting them where it matters most - cost savings and better services," Mr Genovese said.
"... I think this all amounts to what we tell our members - we're a different kind of health fund, we put people before profits."
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content:
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.