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Massive increase for Discovery medical aid premiums in 2017

Massive increase for Discovery medical aid premiums in 2017

Discovery Health has announced its new premiums for 2017, which are set to increase between 7.8% and 14.9%.

The average premium increase across Discovery Health’s plans are 10.2% – significantly higher than last year’s 8.6%, and even higher than the forecast CPI of 6.8%

The increases for individual Discovery Health plans are as follows:

  • Executive and Comprehensive: 11.9%
  • Coastal Core: 14.9%
  • Coastal Saver: 7.8%
  • All other plans: 9.9%

According to Milton Streak, ‎Principal Officer at Discovery Health Medical Scheme, most of their members will see an increase of 9.9% or lower in 2017.

Discovery Health is the biggest medical scheme on the open market with over 2.7 million members. The group warned earlier this year that premiums would be going up due to significantly higher claims than in previous years.

The group said that the entire industry has seen increased use over the past year, and warned that policies would have to be revised to keep the schemes sustainable.

Notably, Discovery said it would look at tightening its hospital network, and working to be more regionally efficient.

According to a note by Global Credit Ratings last week, open medical schemes saw an overall operating deficit in 2015 due to a high rate of claims, and were forced to dip into their reserves to keep the system going.

Claims in 2016 are expected to be even higher, hence the steep increase seen in Discovery.

The increases will take effect in January 2017.

More on Discovery

Discovery making progress on intention to enter banking

Discovery readies move to retail banking

Discovery reveals top unnatural death claims in SA

Discovery to be investigated for insider trading


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  • Konstabel Koekemoer

    I doubt that people are suddely getting sicker thab before so the claim increases must be due to overcharging by hospitals and medical professionals.

  • For the Emperor!

    Wow, at this rate my hospital plan, on which I only use about R100 per month for 1 chronic prescription, will no longer be affordable. As a “very low claimer” I am begin punished for other peoples behaviour again?

    • Born-again-Atheist

      Don’t blame the sick of claiming but rather the relentless pursuit of profit.

  • Stuart Steedman

    Literally just got off the phone with Discovery, having now cancelled my medical aid with them. 10 – 12% increase is just too much …

    • haikona

      For over 14 years I never missed a Discovery payment then in one month I lost my job and missed 3 payments. The cover was retracted for those 3 months and when I got back on my feet financially again Discovery was intent that I should pay back the months I missed, even tho I was not covered in those months. The accumulated total was nearly R25k for my family. R25k for NO COVER over those months I was amazed. I was forced to actually dive into finding new medical aid and when I did I started to un-pack how each medical aid worked. What services they ACTUALLY provided for the money and how they ACTUALLY operated when things happened. Discovery was not by any stretch of the imagination in the top 5 performers. Their services are heavily bloated and processes are notoriously complex.

      • Shreez

        Just out of interest, which company did you settle on?
        If I do decide to cancel though, I’d have to possibly change everything, because I’ve got Discovery Life and Discovery Investments, but yes, their medical aid is ridiculously priced and doesn’t offer much.

        • SpeakingTruth

          Try LibCare from Liberty. I was with them for years until I lost my job and even then they covered me for a couple of months. Never had a self payment gap issue with them either. They also focus on medical aid and not some bloody rewards program even though they do have one

          • Shreez

            Thank you so much!
            I’ll have a look now.
            I did a quick comparison this morning, and all other plans similar to mine only covered 100% of medical aid rate, and doctors love to charge more. Only my Discovery plan covers 200%.
            Thanks again.

      • itypedthis1

        Which one did you change to?

      • Jaco

        I would also like to know which medical aid you chose???

        • Guava_Eater

          ditto

      • No, no, Haikona, you’re not quite right.

        Discovery’s processes for CLAIMING YOUR HEALTHCARE are notoriously bloated and complex.

        Discovery’s processes for charging their fees run like a Swiss frikking watch!

        Their priorities are pretty clear.

        • Demisemi

          Ha ha….

          Yup……..in fact, this applies for Big Business SA [ I’m looking at you MTN……our lovely banks…….]

        • brz

          Couldn’t agree more, TTB. I think many members just give in in the end, because there comes a point where it’s just not worth the time or trouble anymore to try getting them to pay.

      • Christine Cameron-Dow

        Here’s the 5th person asking: which medical aid did you choose? I can’t really complain about mine, but then I haven’t seen what THEIR 2017 increase is going to be….

        • Demisemi

          Have you tried to claim on yours yet….?

          Thats the acid test.

          Some customers get lucky when there is literally no where the ins company can wiggle out from paying over

          But, if there is so much as a microbe of a chance they can pineapple you, its done.

      • AdBreak

        Dude, which company did you switch to?

      • Demisemi

        Yup !!

        See my reply to ‘Titanium Teddybear’ above

    • Cameron Hart

      The prices are quite exorbitant. Thankfully there are alternatives. They were the market leader in medial schemes for some time. But every rise has it fall
      Pop me a mail on: cameronh@herefordgroup.co.za
      I will put you in contact with our medical schemes specialist and she will provide you with a competitive quote.
      Best of luck 🙂

  • Bradley Streak

    Looks like i’m going to need that life cover they keep phoning me about :/

  • TellMe

    Any advice on other medical aid schemes, they can go suck it!

  • Brandon van Reenen

    “The group warned earlier this year that premiums would be going up due to significantly higher claims than in previous years…”

    Am I understanding this correctly. People are making claims, so because of those people I need to suffer for it?

    • Skyman_12

      I also don’t understand this, if I am allowed to make a claim as per their own rules and regulations then why am I now being punished for making valid claims?

      • M v d Walt

        good question ????

      • ObviousJoe

        It’s like the eskom thing… don’t use electricity because we didn’t have enough, but please use it so that you can pay for it else we don’t have money to make you more electricity!

        More serious note, unfortunately these insurance companies are audited to ensure they are sustainable, so when they say they dipped into their savings, it actually means their reserve tank (not that they don’t have enough jerry-cans somewhere else).

        Lately if you know you’ll be fine for a year or two, you can actually just put your medical aid payments into a savings account and be better off, unless you have to get hundreds of thousands of rands worth of surgeries, then medical aid makes sense

        • Skyman_12

          Had surgery this year and my wife has been to hospital as well and having a kid in the next year or 2 so keeping it for now. The only reason I am with Discovery is because my company pays half so I am fortunate that it’s not so bad for me, I would use another scheme if my company did not pay 50%.

          • Leon

            My company does not pay half.
            On my payslip it looks like it, but when I changed my structure to allow for the company to deduct it pre-tax so I get the up-front tax saving, my cost to company did not change. In other words, the did not add their half to my salary. So I’m paying it all anyway.

          • SpeakingTruth

            The company is still required to pay half even if you switch, if they are paying other staff medical aid as well.

    • SJe

      Whether your premiums increase or stay the same you still suffer. As medical aids cannot charge premiums based on your age, sex, etc, the young pay for the old based on one premium.

  • haikona

    All medical aids suck but Bonitas is about as close as you can get to a medical aid that just does what a medical aid is meant to do. I’m so glad I changed over from Discovery I was being ripped off as I never used 90% of the services or took part in their data-gathering nonsense. I see that the Discovery Coastal Core: 14.9% which I would guess is biggest chunk of their customer base. Well played profiteers well played.

    • keithbe

      Surprisingly Classic Comprehensive would be Discoveries top plan.

  • CharlieTango

    Discovery complains about rising costs, yet this doesn’t deter them from spending on lavish offices. Rip off artists of note.

    • Dale

      Keeping your employees happy is as important as keeping your customers happy. Google knows this; look at the Googleplex. Many other companies don’t know this.

      And ask yourself, would you be happy to have your workplace downgraded by your management to keep their clients happy? I wouldn’t.

      • it’s more an issue of
        And ask yourself, would you be happy to have your management’s workplace upgraded and not yours to keep their base animal desires happy? I wouldn’t.

      • Demisemi

        True.

        Except, one big difference Google actually offers a worthwhile service.

  • Andrew James

    My son recently had a plastic surgery procedure not covered by medical aid. The hospital happily gave me a 30% reduction in their fee because it is not covered. So the reason the medical aid fees are so high is because the hospitals hike their fees when they are paid by a medical aid.

    • I hear you, but the thing is if it’s the hospital’s fault then why does Discovery make massive profits every year, far above the rate of inflation?

      • Demisemi

        I can confidently answer your question for you: Discovery, like all insurance companies, work on the ‘max in, min out’ principle

        In other words, all is fine as long as you paying your premiums and you bouncing around like a happy bunny

        But wait till you try claim.

        Then the BS starts

        They have an army of Latin speaking professionals – one ‘t’ not crossed or an ‘i’ not dotted, you’re f*kced.

        Kaching !!….. Insurance company: 1, customer: 0

        • brz

          “…one ‘t’ not crossed or an ‘i’ not dotted, you’re f*kced.”

          So very true. And they’re masters at obfuscation.

        • Philman

          I once forgot to dot a ‘j’

    • Mike

      Fully agree with you. Follow the trail of the money, it leads to the ultimate benefactors and root of the problem..

    • Erik Coetzer

      Same here. Had an MRI scan last year and the private hospital charged me R 14400. When they heard I had no medical they charged me R 7,200. Cash is king.

    • SpeakingTruth

      I had the same with my dentist. I told him I was paying cash as not on a medical aid at the time and it was less than half of what it normally would have cost.

  • Ofentse

    Discovery is anti competitive. The competition commission should investigate why most companies in the private sector use Discovery. Private sector does not support other medical aid schemes. Plus they are raising money now to start a bank, this is just one method.

    • Razmataz

      Brilliant point! With some even forcing employees to take Discovery med aid or not get subsidized.

    • Aubrey Kloppers

      I have forced my company to allow me to break away from discovery and have not looked back! You have the RIGHT to get your own medical aid AND your company HAS to pay you the subsidy they are giving to other staff members. IT IS THE LAW!!!

      • SpeakingTruth

        The best medical aid I have been on for ACTUAL medical aid cover is LibCare from Liberty. In several years I never had a self payment gap and actually got up to R17,000 from my medical savings account paid back to me if I chose or I could carry it forward

    • daniel

      Have they been captured by the Guptas?.

  • umpalumpa

    E CORP

    • Josh Strauss

      D CORP 8)

  • Lizzard

    This is absolute ludicrous. This on top of the fact they they have ultra low prices negotiated with the hospitals.

  • Jared Drake

    10% increase is just too much for everyone… Discovery, you did not cover for my ultrasound and x-ray, so I have to pay R1500 while I pay R2000 p/m for medical aid??? And now you want 10% increase? Ripping me off!

  • Goodbye Discovery! They are having a laugh.

  • ToothyGrinn

    “A dead patient is a cheap patient.”
    – Discovery

    • Wayne Kitching

      Yes, when your heart rate falls by 100%, your premiums will also fall by 100%!

      • Razmataz

        Impressive saving!

    • Boetie McBoetface

      A living patient is a paying patient.

  • Willow

    “Our social mandate is clear. We have to make sure that healthcare is affordable” – Adrian Gore, CEO – Discovery.

    Sounding as fork-tongued as Jaykop Zuma, Adrian.

    moneyweb . co . za / moneyweb-radio / discoverys – existing – business- profit-up-15 /

    • MP3

      in truth they don’t give a toss about it’s members who struggle to pay the premiums, they’d sooner have us die than use any money outside of the holy MSA…

      • Willow

        Exactly! 15% increase in profits necessitates increased premiums of this magnitude?? Just blatant greed!!

  • Broscientist

    Best thing I did was close my account with these leaches. Besides charging way too much the amount of errors they make with claims is simply not worth it.

  • MP3

    fing fantastic, we get to bankroll their new BS bank! F U discovery! #FeesMustFall

  • obiOne

    if the customers don’t publicly complain and insist on them rethinking this thing, then #feesWontFall..

  • MP3

    Do you think we can get the students to rally for us against Discovery? I can’t afford basic things because of Discovery. Let alone education.

  • Eugene Groeneveld

    but they have a enough cash to start a bank with R1bn. Amazing that government does not stop their increases as well. I am a pensioner so this will hit me very hard. I also have a heart condition so I can not go too low on plans. Well done Discovery, screw all your loyal contributors – again

    • MP3

      loyalty is a thing of the past i’m afraid…

  • Bradley Streak

    #feesmustfall

  • Guava_Eater

    If you have an MSA (not on comprehensive), everything (not in hospital) comes first from the MSA and only once the MSA is exhausted do the benefits kick in. This is applicable to most common things like doctor’s visits and gynea visits for pregnancy.

    There is ZERO incentive for a family expecting or planning on a baby to be conservative as the entire pregnancy and all associated tests will come from your MSA first.

    MSA= Your money this is directly your money that you pay them monthly.

    Therefore YOU PAY.

    If you want discovery to pay for the medical costs of the pregnancy you need to blow through your MSA as quickly as possible.

    • Mohammed Vazeer

      MSA is currently 15% and 25% of your premium. Depending on your plan.

    • Suger

      Only if you use one of their doctors. My MSA ran out 4 months into my pregnancy and Discovery refused to pay one cent after that! So I was paying them R2300p/m and my doc R970p/m on top of that! Now they are increasing their prices? Are you serious?

      • Guava_Eater

        I had the same problem because as I see it the MSA is my money. Paying them and paying the Doctor.

        An MSA is directly proportional to your MSA contribution and all they do is front you the cash at the beginning of the year and make it so you need their approval to use it.

        IF your MSA contribution is R500 per month then your MSA will be R500 x 12 = R6000. Not a cent more or a cent less. Everything comes from the MSA first then from the Risk portion. So… It’s your money.

        Everytime they charge to the MSA they are actually saying that you are paying for that.

        Let’s not forget that they negotiate and set the prices with the providers. So you’re paying with your money at rates negotiated by them while (often) being limited to doctors that they choose/limit you to.

        Sounds like a franchise agreement where you have to always buy from “Head Office”….

  • Alex

    This is just to pay for their new building in Sandton!!

  • CypherGate

    I wonder what would happen if everyone that’s on discovery stopped paying for 6 months. It would hit them really hard.

  • If it’s the costs that are responsible then why do Discovery Health’s profits increase greater than inflation, every single year?

    Every year they make the exact same excuses. Seriously. Google the statement they made last year. It’s practically cut-and-pasted.

    Here’s the truth:
    When costs go up Discovery’s prices go up a lot.
    When costs go down Discovery’s prices… STILL GO UP, they just go up by less.

    Every year they increase their fees and reduce their coverage so that they can guarantee greater profits all the damn time.

    It’s a business model they stole from the American healthcare companies.

    And we all know how well that turned out…

    -_-

    (and if anyone is dumb enough to buy the line that Discovery Health Medical Scheme is “non-profit” then…well then I really can’t help you)

    • QS

      Healthcare and financial services provider Discovery [JSE:DSY] on Thursday reported a 51% growth in new business to R17 532m for the year ending June 2015.

      This was mainly on the back of Discovery Health being awarded the business of Bankmed Medical Scheme, the group said in a statement.

      Normalised profit from operations was up 17% to R5 789m, while normalised headline earnings increased by 16% to R4 027m.

      Discovery Health exceeded expectation with operating profit increasing 10% to R2 031m and new business growing 92% to R9 598m, boosted by the Bankmed account.

      Discovery Life showed operating profit growth of 15% to R2 968m over the period (+18% gross of FinRe), driven by new business growth of 11% to R2 231m.

      • Jesus.

        Don’t you love the way that local “news” says “R2 900 million” instead of R2.9 BILLION?

        -_-

        • QS

          and on profits of 2.9 BILLION – a projected economy growth of around 0% – inflation of around 6% – huge inequality in the country – and the greedy capitalist big company still want +10% increase

          I am all for free markets but at some stage we need to stand together and build the country – reduce inequality and access to education, healthy, security, sanitation etc – rather than lining the pockets of greedy big business

          • And they get away with it for 2 reasons:
            1. It’s an inelastic market, so even when people know they’re being screwed they have no choice.
            2. The alternative, which is the government health system, doesn’t…shall we say ‘fill one with confidence’?

            :/

          • SpeakingTruth

            You always have a choice.

          • Unfortunately, that isn’t true in this case.

            Discovery’s market dominance means that many companies make it the only option for their employees.

            This is because Discovery offers them a deal that is favourable to the company, but not so great for the employees.

            So a lot of people really don’t have a choice.

            And even if they did have a choice it is still completely fair to criticise the company’s shady behaviour.

            I mean how can people make a fully informed choice without getting feedback from unhappy customers?

    • Maestro

      Do you think if we strike they will give us free medical aid?

      #FeesMustFall

      • Jeffery Stokes

        No. Because white people and clever blacks don’t strike when they are exploited. They moan on forums like this and then take it up the butt like good little sheeple. They then go on to complain about how miners that are also been exploited strike and screw up the economy. Such good brainwashed sheeple.

        • Howsit Bru

          Said the whte guy moaning on a forum.. oh the irony

  • Loman

    When I joined discovery in 2014 their coastal saver was 1556, in two years it rose by over R400. Also, haven’t had a salary increase in over 3 years. Now Discovery will increase again? If they keep it up I won’t be able to afford it next year

  • Ethan

    Authorities control the masses through propaganda, adverts, bill boards and social structures to condition their minds to conform to a sick system. All the rubbish they put on the shelves and Junk food outlets are all in our faces to compel people to be ignorant of what they put into their bodies hence causing obesity, diabetes, Hbp further leading to chronic illnesses and compelling people to think that they cannot live without medical aid in the end making brands like discovery stinking rich. wake up people this is a SICK SYSTEM!!! he who controls food controls the world.

    • Ray Mulder

      Is it not each individual who must control the food he.. She eats?
      There is nobody but yourself to blame for the state of your ignorance.

      • Ethan

        Yes, it is for each individual to decide which foods are beneficial for them but the authorities regulate what kind of foodstuff are allowed to be on the shelves on a mass scale. Eg: How many beer ads do you see on television as opposed to ads that encourage healthy eating? You see how society is driven by propaganda?

      • Fareed Mahomed

        I concur completely with you Ethan, it’s the aggressive advertising done by fast food outlets that concern me the most!!! It’s so damn blatant that it should actually be illegal & yet the irony is that the food companies that are actually healthy hardly ever advertise!!!

  • Loman

    If hospitals/doctors didn’t overcharge the moment they see your lovely shiny medical aid card, then prices could actually be lowered instead of raised.

    But people don’t mind because its discovery paying for it not them. WAKE UP!

    • myPointOfView

      I do mind. Hell. It still costs me even if I am with them

  • The I-watches I laugh at now!!!

  • Ray Mulder

    The entire health system has been configured to suck as much money out of you… And they do it based on fear.
    The average general practitioner is clueless about how things actually work in our bodies and as soon as some antibiotics and cough mixture doesn’t fix you, it’s off to the specialist for a fortune in every test they can think of. No wonder the medical aids can’t keep up with the stupidity of the doctors. I have no idea why they call these quacks doctors… At best they are just body technicians.

  • BrS

    Cut the amount of money that goes to the management company.

  • the-TRUTH

    Eish, these medical aid schemes are a bunch of rip-offs. The reason I save R5000 monthly and these lump savings (my money market account) is accumulating very well because I hardly fall sick cos I live a very healthy lifestyle. I will keep saving this money for one day when a medical emergency arises…
    It’s a good thing that I am not greedy or controlled by money; in fact more and more of my money is working for me. Hopefully one day I will find myself being a self-made millionaire and then billionaire. Thank God for His wisdom, protection and blessings

  • bookworm

    Fees being hiked, watch benefits go down, and members being forced to downgrade their packages. People should also remember that the membership pays staff salaries through their contributions, so yes, members should be kept happy with their packages versus their fees. If the staff are happy, well and good since they have nice offices and benefits to keep them happy too. Not so many people can even afford to be on ANY sort of medical aid, so count your blessings if you have medical aid!

  • Ace of Spades

    Time to get a quote from someone else, this cant go on!

    • Serious Much

      Tried… They are all in the price fixing cartel…

  • Frikkie

    Typical Discovery will lose a lot of members as they are pathetic already with low rates

  • Cheesy 3.0

    Discovery

    Well that is them off the list of potentials

  • Armand Morne Theron

    Seriously…. that has always been the standard increase year on year i never had an increase less than 12% with them so how is this a shocker ?

  • AdBreak

    Everything’s a money making scheme. Discovery has no intention of improving the quality of life of it’s patrons. Everybody should boycott these blood sucking institutions. The ‘medical’ profession has demoralised peoples’ rights to live with dignity. If you cant afford it you’ll die on the floor. Its high time this government revamped all state hospitals and make these parasite companies feel the pinch.

    • Christine Cameron-Dow

      You touch on a sore point. If we could trust this government to introduce an NHS scheme, it would break the medical aid stranglehold and provide effective care for all without it breaking anyone’s bank. Frankly, I don’t trust the ANC to implement and manage a kindergarten class, and the DA upholds private enterprise. Somewhere in between is a happy medium, but I can assure you, it ain’t the EFF!

  • Richard

    There has been a shift with lots of people moving from Coastal Saver to Coastal Core. Discovery has seen this and now increase Coastal Core by 14.9%. This is not due to an increase in their costs, but rather maximising their profits.

    • Fareed Mahomed

      This is clearly the tactic employed here!!!

  • Shane Barker

    So twat nail those people who keep on abusing the system

  • Sean

    I cancelled discover end of 2006. I will never use them again. Most useless institution ever

  • Johan Lewis Last

    “…..premiums would be going up due to significantly higher claims than in previous years.”

    More like the high costs involved when the these private health care institutes charges the medical aids. Private HEALTH is killing everyone, they should be maintained by a third party….they are pretending to help people but they actually work like a syndicate run by the mob. Every time I hear medical aid, I imagine these people running these medical aids listening to Hail Mary Mallon – Whales.

  • CPLANET

    haha 2.7 million suckers

  • JohnybeGood

    And then doctors charge you 200% still above medical aid rates

  • Josh Strauss

    Shame, they must be struggling after making R6.4 billion profit in 2015/2016. They made R1.67 billion profit off Discovery Health alone.

    They mustn’t come plead poverty here, especially with published annual results. It’s outrageous.

    Since URLs are generally blocked, just search for “discovery_annual_results_2016_booklet pdf”

  • RedViking

    Discovery is the cheapest way to go if you want to get an apple watch. For the rest get a medical aid.

  • Demisemi

    Newsflash ….!!….. :

    They need more cheddar to start this new bank of theirs.

  • Stealth_Za

    Gotta start that bank somehow..

  • Thando_Gqabaza

    #DiscoveryMustFall

  • MasterZu

    Death by: Tax, Medical Aid, Pensions, etc

  • Chris

    I paid R250 yesterday at my local clinic for consultation and a total of 8 different tablets! I dont have medical aid, only hospital plan and that why I thought I’ll go and check out the local clinic. If you can look past the old building that they work from you will find a dad and son team which is two of the best doctors around! Why spend thousands and thousands of Rands per month on medical aid if you have other options? Ok, granted, it is just me with no other dependants, but still….

    • Serious Much

      My friend does not have Med Aid, and needed Cardiologist treatment(Mild Heart attack) , He went to Helen Joseph, He’s comment was that exept that there was no TV with DSTV and the food was too much pap, 2 weeks wasn’t that bad, he needed some intervention ,like camera trough his veins to the heart.. stuff, They drove him to JoburgGen, He said , all Private hospitals bring their patients at JoburgGen for this scan or treatment.
      At the end he has blood thinning pills for years to come, and all this did not cost him nothing..
      So yes, we get ripped off..

  • Wez

    Well im now looking into another medical aid. The increase is well above the average inflation rate. Dear Discovery you are going to need this percentage increase to offset the amount of people leaving your medical aid…

  • SA into 1st Gear

    there are other alternatives out here. i have moved over to another, paying approx. 40-50% less and have most of the benefits i use to have. i am saving money and i have not jeopardized the well-being of my family in the process. to companies & individuals still attached to this scheme – your money, your loss….. do the sums, and you will be surprised….and yes it will take some effort from your side!

    • Serious Much

      Details Please….. which is the “another” that can save us buck or two 🙂

  • Aubrey Kloppers

    I suppose it is to subsidize the new Discovery Banking fees?

  • bengine

    The medical profession needs a really hard kick in the gonads – too many doctors out there fleecing patients and medical aids and getting away with it. No beef with doctors making money but the element of greed that has crept into the profession has to be nipped in the bud.

  • Rob Hutchinson

    Someone is not being honest ….. Discovery have shown consistent growth in net profits as well as net surplus of R1.3 billion. Member reserves increased to a significant R12.9 billion, with a solvency ratio of 26% of total annual contribution income – [2015 Annual Financials].”This significant reserve level further enhances the claims-paying ability of the Scheme, which protects its members from the potentially devastating and unexpected expenses associated with healthcare, and is a source of great pride for us.”

  • Helldriver Phoenix

    Thank goodness I left these skelms a long time ago.

  • Dave Thompson

    Gotta keep them profits high hey.

  • Boetie McBoetface

    What I did a few years ago.

    – Cancelled my “medical aid”
    – Took out a good hospital plan with gap cover
    – Opened an investment account into which I deposit a lump sum at the beginning of each year, strictly allocated for day-to-day medical expenses. I get the interest accrued and have full control over what goes in and out without anybody telling me what I am and am not covered for.

    When asked if I have medical aid by a medical professional I say “no” and offer to pay cash. This often results in significant discounts.
    Coupled with my gap cover, I’m now covered for up to 450% of MSR which has resulting in me saving tens of thousands of Rands over the past few years compared to my previous setup.

    Why don’t brokers advise this? Because it’s all about commission. The more expensive a scheme they sell you, the more they get. Even my own GP is on a similar setup to me.

    • Dave

      Please let me know which Hospital Plan and Gap Cover you have

      • Boetie McBoetface

        Currently on a “Hospital Select” with Liberty and a gap cover policy with Zestlife. I might reevaluate end of the year as Liberty’s medical aid merged with another this year and I’m just waiting on more news on what changes they make to packages and pricing.

  • Michael

    Not with discovery medical personally but don’t most medical aids increase around 8-10% a year? They are very seldom at CPI.

  • DumbSA

    #ClaimsMustFall ??

  • Roelof Liebenberg

    They have to pay for their new building in sandton somehow.

  • chris

    I’m on the classic comprehensive plan. Paid just below R 10,000 p/m for my 2 kids, wife and myself. My kid got “draaitjies” – R 26,000 in January. gone is my MSA. I had to pay another R 6000 before my threshold was activated. During that time that cost me another R 5,000 out of my pocket for the dentist. Why must I pay for baby goodies if my wife cant have baby’s anymore. As is, we just make ends-meat a month.

    • Serious Much

      I have the lowest possible option, Hospital Plan Keycore something(They changed the names and packages since I joined.)
      Currently for me my wife and 2 kids I pay R3300+ pm, Does not cover anything day to day . Only in event that we need hospitalization we are covered “100%” But at selected Network Hospitals, Nearest to North is Garden City on the south 🙂
      And still if I have emergency I pay for it until I get hospitalized , Then I will be treated by Network Doctors..
      I am already thinking of cancelling it and take a chance, They pray on our fears.. Thats all.
      If for last 10 years I saved all installments in my fund(Medical) I would’ve have quite a saving for hospitalization,
      We hardly go ones a year to GP, Just the dentist is pricey but anyway other plans also don’t cover everything and they pay Discovery rates to the provider, which most of the time is less than the fees we pay..

      Did you notice that their app or website are useless now, Before I could get more info on my plan, Now is just a MAZE of links that go around..
      And the Agents are clueless too when one phone to ask about something..

    • Christine Cameron-Dow

      You know, that’s a point I already made to a medical aid representative! If you can customize your insurance, and only pay for the cover you need, just by talking to the agent over the phone, why can’t you do the same with your medical aid? I’m in my 60s, why the hell do I get maternity cover? I’m reasonably well-balanced, with not a bipolar or schizo bone in my body, why do I need thousands for mental health? Give me extra cover for a cardiologist, a specialist physician or an orthopaedic surgeon and leave out the psychiatrists and obstetricians!

  • John

    No one seems to mention the monthly admin fee! Every member pays about R600 (its much more since I left the industry years ago) every month to Discovery ( the administrator), the rest of your contribution goes to Discovery Health (the medical aid)
    So every year YOU pay the “administrator” close to R10K just to do the admin around your membership – that’s not to even mention Life, Vitality etc…
    The “Scheme” pays your insured benefits and doesn’t operate for profit.
    The “Adminstrator” – The Discovery listed on the JSE very much operates for profit.
    No wonder their offices are so lush!

    • brz

      Very valid point.

  • Dave

    Never mind data…. #DiscoveryMustFall. R12000 a month in case I get sick. What a RIP.

  • Runnin Bare

    A rip off of note. Membership declines year on year because they too expensive so they have to excessively increase rates to make up for the loss. (ANC style) If they were more affordable they would increase membership and be more liquid with increased cross subsidies. Shouldn’t their actuary think out the box along these lines instead of being stuck in the age old university professor calculation gumpf that never changes.

    Hospitals and service providers also rip people off with unrelated added ‘bonus’ charges. Don’t pay the service providers anything without querying the charge. If the medical aid doesn’t pay an amount there is a very good reason so why should you pay it?
    Over the last few years I have saved over 20k by querying additional charges. I am not with Discovery, belong to a closed medical aid and get all the assistance I need to fight the service providers.
    Watch the administrators as well, the staff are generally not well trained these days especially for PMB related claims that are usually allocated to your savings etc instead of a major hospital payment.
    Discovery could not care about your comments, it will be business as usual.

  • daniel

    All medical Aids are rip offs , because they have a massive management structure they have to keep afloat and in the pound seats.

  • Fareed Mahomed

    I think Discovery have lost the plot for they are way too distracted by their new subsidiaries like short & long term insurance, they’ve lost focus & in a way lost touch with reality regarding their bread & butter i.e. medical insurance with these rather absurd increases!!! This has given me a fine incentive to finally shop around & see what’s out there!!!

    • Leon

      Agree with you 100%.
      I was wanting to change earlier this year, but my savings was already used up, so I would have likely had to pay back the maaneee.
      But this straw, coupled with the timing, means I will re-open that effort.

  • Is this how they’re gonna fund their new bank ?

  • Frank Payne

    This mob need to concentrate on running a Medical aid scheme as efficiently as possible rather than trying to play in every finanancial services space in a mediocre fashion. They are ostentatious beyond belief using clients’ contributions to support grandiose lifestyles rather than affordable medical aid cover. Expanding operations into insurance, financial services and banking dilutes concentration and focused effort and creates monopolistic activity which is not in their clients’ interests, but rather those of shareholders. Conglomeration is getting totally out of hand and is resulting in obscene consolidation of capital in fewer and fewer handsome the detriment of society.

  • SpeakingTruth

    Years ago I worked for one of their rivals and was informed that Discovery did not comply with the 25% liquidity required by law but had achieved a pass through creative accounting. Whether this is true or not does not get away from the fact that Discovery needs to focus more on medical aid and stop spending so much of an already overpriced medical aid on their awards and benefits program. When you want movie tickets etc you go buy movie tickets. When I buy a medical aid I want a scheme that will pay for medical treatment when I am least able to afford it. Discovery to me as a past member is nothing but a ripoff and the most expensive one available.

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