Australia’s largest not for profit health insurer, HCF, says it will continue to prioritise the health needs of its members during the COVID-19 pandemic
“As always, our members remain our focus and we continue to explore how we can best support them during this turbulent time and into the future when we emerge from this pandemic,” said HCF CEO Ms Sheena Jack.
“As a country we must all pull together and work as a united healthcare system to balance the short and long term healthcare needs across Australia. We support the Government’s move to an integrated system of private and public hospitals working together to increase capacity at this critical time.”
“We know that this health crisis has altered our way of living for the time being, however the reality is that many of our members still require their immediate healthcare needs to be met. Whether it is giving birth, receiving cancer or cardiac treatment or medical assistance as a result of an accident, we will continue to support our members for these ongoing needs. We remain agile in this critical environment to ensure we never lose sight of what matters most to our members,” continued Ms Jack.
HCF said it was providing 'clarity' to members given they "may be feeling overwhelmed by the information out there".
It said all members with a hospital policy are covered for COVID-19 related claims and can still elect to be treated as private patients.
Category 1 and urgent Category 2 surgeries continue to be undertaken while the insurer says it has a range of online products and services available to support members, including in relation to telehealth. HCF Dental and Eyecare centres continue to provide emergency care by appointment.
“With the pandemic placing non-emergency surgeries on hold, we anticipate high demands on those category 2 and 3 surgeries when this does eventually pass. This will place high pressure on hospital waitlists, and we stand ready to work with the Government and members to ensure we balance demands on the system," continued Ms Jack.
"HCF have implemented a number of support measures for members including the deferral of premium increases, involuntary unemployment assistance and financial hardship assistance to help see their members through these tough times.
“We are assessing and updating our products and services on a daily basis, both at HCF and as an industry, to ensure private health insurance remains as relevant now as ever and we are investigating many other ways to provide support and value to members,” she added.