Renaissance launches 2013 product
Renaissance Health Medical Aid Fund this week launched its 2013 product which is currently under review awaiting approval from Namfisa.
Callie Schafer, MD of Prosperity Healthcare Administrators said although 2012 was a tough year for the industry in many instances, there is no reason for the product not to be approved.
He said, independent actuaries reviewed all the fund’s costs. While the Renaissance Medical Aid Fund only increased premiums by 7.2% for this year, the actual operating increase at the end of July and August was in fact double that, to about 14%.
He said the increase in tariffs is determined by the income of medical professionals and it has to ensure that the fund meets the access to and affordability of medical services.
“Whilst we respect a need for higher fees for health professionals, companies tell us that medical aids have become unaffordable and expensive,” he said.
Schafer further said the Renaissance Health Medical Aid Fund trustees have resolved that for the best interests of its members and all partners like health professional, it will not engage in public debate about challenges faced by the medical industry but solutions can be found in constructive engagement with all parties.
According to Schafer, an estimated 18% of the population is covered by private medial aid funds and by PSEMAS medical aid. Overall, less than 50% of employed Namibians are covered and the partners in the medical aid industry should work together and find a solution for this challenge.
Elton Black, Principle Officer at Prosperity Health Administrators said the fund received N$265million from its members in 2011. The increase in the money received from the members is a result of an increasing amount of benefits that the fund had deferred in its cost increase. This is what drives the increase in health care inflation [and determines] the cost of health care.
He further said the fund does not take much more than what it needs to serve its members and that 20% of membership fees is used for non-health care costs.
“We use more and more of membership fees on healthcare costs and less on administration. We tend to spend much less money on administration costs and more on health care compared to the rest of the world,” he said.