April the 2nd was Family Day – an opportunity for us all to take a break from work and other stresses – and focus on those closest to us.
In South Africa, families form the bedrock of our society, so as we recognise the importance of family, let’s take a look at how to protect your family from health risks and financial difficulties.
Within the family, we may all have different health concerns. It could be a father with a heart problem, a mother suffering through breast cancer treatment, or a child with asthma. But while our families have unique healthcare needs, there are certain good practices that apply to all families.
This includes selecting Medical Aid and Gap Cover solutions that address your family’s needs, helping to shelter you from massive medical expense shortfalls and ensure that your family members get the care that they need.
In recent years, as the costs of medical care have ballooned, and Medical Aids are covering less and less of one’s total bill (for the likes of specialist hospital care and scans). To cover this ‘gap’ between what the healthcare professional charges and what the Medical Aid pays, Gap Cover emerged to protect ones’ family against footing the medical expense shortfalls themselves.
From just a couple of hundred rand per month, individuals can take out Gap Cover policies. Most Gap Cover providers allow one to add their spouse and children to the same policy, at no extra cost.
Turnberry’s CEO, Tony Singleton, explains, “This gives families the peace of mind that medical expense shortfalls for anyone in the family will be covered by their Gap Cover provider.”
“Without Gap Cover, we’ve seen families faced with a terrible dilemma: choosing between putting their family at severe financial risk or choosing to forgo much-needed treatment for their loved ones.”
As we recognise Family Day, Singleton says that no family should be forced to choose between these two scenarios, that everyone should have the right to the medical care that they need.
“The reality in our country is that certain specialised healthcare services are not available in public healthcare, requiring families to seek private healthcare assistance. But without Medical Aid and Gap Cover, for some families this is out-of-reach.”
Growing up involves some cuts and bruises
Joyous though it may be, starting a family can also bring some very expensive medical bills. For young families, having a quality Medical Aid and Gap Cover combination helps to cover these expenses and ensure young families remain on solid financial footing.
“In fact, Turnberry’s statistics shows that childbirth-related claims are some of the most common types of claims that we process,” notes Singleton.
From there, as a baby’s immune system is still developing, new parents can expect a number of in-hospital claims from paediatricians and other specialists. And with toddlers, parents can certainly expect a few accidents, as young ones enjoy the thrills (and spills) of their new-found freedom.
“Growing up certainly involves a few cuts and bruises,” says Singleton, “but with the right policies in place, you can reduce the medical expense shortfalls and ensure that everyone gets the treatment they need.”
Ultimately, the choices one makes today will determine their family’s protection in the future. Singleton advises consumers to discuss Gap Cover with their financial advisor, and not to wait for events to happen – when it’s too late – to make the right choices for their family.