Government watching on prostheses cuts

Latest News

The Department of Health says government will be watching closely to ensure private health insurers pass on the full benefit of prostheses price reductions to consumers.

In response to a question on notice tabled at last year's supplementary budget estimates, the Department said, "As a part of the 2018 premium submission process, insurers will be required to explain how the prostheses benefit changes have impacted their proposed future contribution rate. Insurers are required to provide estimated savings arising from prostheses changes."

The prostheses price changes are forecast to deliver insurers savings of $180 million in 2018.

According to the Department, "In assessing the submissions, the Australian Government will ensure that, in the public interest, any increases are the minimum necessary to ensure the affordability and value of private health insurance, and that prostheses benefit reductions are passed on in full by insurers.

"In addition, the Department will monitor quarterly reports on private health insurance participation and benefits expenditure produced by APRA to evaluate the impact of the benefit reductions on prostheses benefits expenditure."

The Department also pointed to public commitments by insurers to pass on the full benefit of the price reductions.