SAVE €1,706 ON IR­ISH LIFE HEALTH PLANS

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Business & Appointments - - FRONT PAGE -

A fam­ily of four could save €1,706 by switch­ing from Ir­ish Life Health’s Level 2 Fam­ily Health plan to Health Plan 16.1 — a cor­po­rate plan of­fered by the in­surer. At €2,204 per adult and €363.60 per child, Level 2 Fam­ily Health is more ex­pen­sive than Health Plan 16.1, which costs €1,381.40 per adult and €333 per child.

“Health Plan 16.1 cov­ers the same hos­pi­tals as Level 2 Fam­ily Health — with the same €75 ex­cess per claim in pri­vate hos­pi­tals,” said Goode. “There is a higher orthopaedic co-pay­ment on the Health Plan 16.1 but this scheme gives guar­an­teed re­funds on out-pa­tient ex­penses — which you don’t get on the Fam­ily Health scheme.” (A co-pay­ment is where a pa­tient must foot some of the bill as the in­surer won’t foot the en­tire cost of the surgery.)

This fam­ily would save €2,052 by split­ting their cover so that the two adults switch to Health Plan 16.1 — and the two chil­dren to Ir­ish Life Health’s Nur­ture Plan. The Nur­ture Plan costs €160 per child — about half of what it costs to in­sure a child un­der Level 2 Fam­ily Health and Health Plan 16.1. (The cover for out­pa­tient ex­penses is gen­er­ally bet­ter un­der Health Plan 16.1 than it is un­der Nur­ture Plan though). Hav­ing two adults on Health Plan 16.1 and two chil­dren on the Nur­ture Plan would cost this fam­ily €3,083. ex­cess per claim on treat­ment in pri­vate hos­pi­tals.” (There is no such ex­cess on Fam­ily Plan Plus Level 1). At €1,754 per adult and €551 per child, VHI Fam­ily Plan Plus Level 1 is more ex­pen­sive than PMI 3613. It costs €1,349 to in­sure an adult un­der PMI 3613 and €379 for a child. So it costs €3,457 to in­sure the whole fam­ily un­der PMI 3613 — but €4,609 un­der Fam­ily Plan Plus Level 1.

The fam­ily would save €1,575 by in­sur­ing the adults un­der PMI 3613 and the chil­dren un­der One Plan Com­plete, which costs €168 per child. (One Plan Com­plete’s cover for out­pa­tient ex­penses isn’t as good as Fam­ily Plan Plus Level 1 or PMI 3613). It costs €3,034 to in­sure two adults un­der PMI 3613 and the two chil­dren un­der One Plan Com­plete — €1,575 less than in­sur­ing the whole fam­ily un­der Fam­ily Plan Plus Level 1.

For ex­am­ple, an el­derly cou­ple could save €1,940 by switch­ing from Ir­ish Life Health’s Level 2 Hos­pi­tal plan (which costs €2,627 per adult for ex­ist­ing mem­bers) to its Best Ul­ti­mate Ac­tive plan (€1,657 per adult) in­stead.

“Best Ul­ti­mate Ac­tive is an up­grade in cover com­pared to Level 2 Hos­pi­tal as it cov­ers a pri­vate room in a pri­vate hos­pi­tal and it also in­cludes ex­cel­lent re­funds on out­pa­tient ex­penses — with no ex­cess to pay first,” said Goode. “How­ever, the co-pay­ment on cer­tain orthopaedic pro­ce­dures is higher on Best Ul­ti­mate Ac­tive.”

VHI’S Health­plus Ex­tra plan (pre­vi­ously called Plan B Op­tions) costs €2,563 per adult — but its Health Ac­cess plan costs €1,684. So a cou­ple could save €1,757 by switch­ing from Health Plus Ex­tra to Health Ac­cess.

“The Health Ac­cess plan cov­ers the same hos­pi­tals as Health­plus Ex­tra,” said Goode. “How­ever, Health Ac­cess has an ex­cess of €125 per claim in pri­vate hos­pi­tals, and has less psy­chi­atric cover and re­duced cover for high-tech car­diac pro­ce­dures,” said Goode. A long­stand­ing Laya plan, Es­sen­tial Plus Ex­cess, costs €2,462 per adult — how­ever, Laya’s Com­plete Sim­plic­ity plan, which is quite sim­i­lar, costs €1,564 per adult. So a cou­ple could save €1,796 by switch­ing to Com­plete Sim­plic­ity. “Com­plete Sim­plic­ity cov­ers the same hos­pi­tals as Es­sen­tial Plus Ex­cess and it also gives guar­an­teed re­funds on out-pa­tient ex­penses,” said Goode.

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