A reduction in the price of pacemakers and artificial knee and hip replacements will go a long way to helping reduce the cost of private health insurance for households, Northern-based LNP Senator Ian Macdonald said today.
Senator Macdonald said he welcomed reforms to regulations which saw the cost of some medical devices inflated by thousands of dollars for private patients, resulting in higher premiums.
“This is a great start for all those people who, despite paying hefty private health premiums every year, were also being hit with huge bills for medical prostheses including cardiac devices, hips, knees and lenses,” Senator Macdonald said.
“The cost of living is one of the biggest pressures facing families right across the north, and any savings that we can make to the cost of private health insurance, one of the biggest household expenses, is a win for the consumer.
“And I’ve no doubt the highly competitive private health insurance industry will be only too happy to pass on any savings to their loyal customers in the form of lower premiums”
Senator Macdonald said the reforms were expected to reduce insurers’ costs by $86million per year, an investment of half a billion dollars over the next six years.
These reforms are part of a broader package of reforms that will make private health insurance more affordable and easier to understand for consumers, including:
- Developing easy to understand categories of health cover (eg gold, silver, bronze)
- Weeding out junk policies that push more patients into the public system
- Taking action to bring down premiums through regulatory changes that reduce unnecessary cost pressures in the system.