By: Josua Joubert, Chief Executive and Principal Officer, CompCare Medical Scheme
It’s slim pickings on the low-hanging fruit these days, with so many households becoming increasingly conservative in their spending. You may have seen the Q3 TransUnion 2023 Consumer Pulse Study, which reported a staggering 62% reduction in discretionary spending among respondents, with further cuts expected. And though many of your clients may be clinging to their cover, they’re certainly not happy about the impact this is having in other areas of their monthly budget.
Fortunately, the healthcare landscape offers a hidden opportunity for adding enormous value for your clients within this economic challenge. Unlike certain other types of insurance, medical scheme cover is a living gift – in particular for young families who have much to gain from a healthcare partner that offers market-leading children’s benefits.
It’s worth pointing out to your clients that certain medical schemes offer exceptional value in annual children’s wellness benefits, starting from birth and carrying a family throughout the early years and into the teens.
Just as newborn screenings and paediatric consultations are traditionally aligned to early development milestones, the new-generation medical scheme also provides for that all-important primary school readiness assessment and psychometric testing for adolescents. As we know, children are not little adults, and these years are crucial for cognitive and emotional development. By the same token, building firm fitness foundations requires a particular and age-specific approach.
Whether at primary school level or as a teen engaging in competitive sport, considerable benefit lies in a tailored physical fitness programme created in consultation with a healthcare professional. Dietary wellness is an evolving area of childhood development. Here again, the nutrition that is needed in a growing body and brain is very different to that of an adult, and some professional guidance in this area can only help to take that development potential even further.
Partnering with skilled healthcare professionals such as biokineticists and dietitians to form well-entrenched relationships in the service of young members is but one of the ways that such benefits can be paid directly from a scheme’s risk pool, leaving all other benefits completely untouched. The fact is that healthcare is costly, and none of your clients or their children should ever have to take a knock in their savings simply to make use of preventative care that will ultimately benefit not only them but also their medical scheme in the future.
Likewise, benefits such as 24-hour access to a paediatric healthcare advice line and unlimited GP visits for children under the age of six, which answer to the very real needs of the young family, deliver actual savings without compromising care. A holistic view of healthcare cover goes far beyond the essentials. When it comes to families, childhood development is a key focus area for medical schemes that are serious about investing in your future clients.
This point is further bolstered in light of speculation around when and how NHI may unfold because, quite simply, providing your clients with intelligent options can give them the kind of healthcare backing that reaches into the most meaningful areas of life.