The Star Early Edition - - NEWS -

SIZWE MED­I­CAL FUND is back in the hands of its mem­ber­ship and its newly ap­pointed Prin­ci­pal Of­fi­cer, Neo Khauoe, has an­nounced a pre­mium in­crease for 2015 that is com­fort­ably be­low the in­dus­try trend.

She says, “We have kept the con­tri­bu­tions in­crease to 6.9 per­cent com­pared with an av­er­age in­crease of be­tween 8 per­cent and 9 per­cent.

“As im­por­tantly, we have in­creased most of our ben­e­fits by 6.2 per­cent whereas a num­ber of other schemes have had to re­duce their ben­e­fits.”

Khauoe has also un­veiled two new prod­ucts for next year’s line-up. “They are Sav­ings Care, and an en­try-level prod­uct with great ben­e­fits, Go­momo Care.”

The en­try level prod­uct was re­struc­tured to start at R650 per prin­ci­pal mem­ber per month with un­lim­ited hos­pi­tal­i­sa­tion, spe­cial- ists and acute medicines.

While it is sub­ject to a net­work fa­cil­ity, clin­i­cal pro­to­cols and a medicine for­mu­lary, this has boosted its com­pet­i­tive­ness in the mar­ket.

On the eve of Sizwe’s cu­ra­tor­ship be­ing lifted and with an elected Board of Trus­tees in place the Prin­ci­pal Of­fi­cer de­clares the scheme “on the brink of a new era.”

The Fund was started in 1978 by a group of black doc­tors from Soweto led by busi­ness­man and po­lit­i­cal stal­wart Dr Nthato Mot­lana.

The ob­jec­tive was to pro­vide health­care for those marginalised by the po­lit­i­cal ide­olo- gies of the day.

“It was,” says Khauoe, “a fund born for the peo­ple by the peo­ple, and this phi­los­o­phy is still very much ap­par­ent to­day as is ev­i­dent in its loyal mem­ber­ship base. My per­sonal com­mit­ment is to hon­our our pi­o­neer­ing founders’ dream.”

She points to a level of trust that has been de­vel­oped though con­sis­tent de­liv­ery of good ser­vice, cou­pled with rich value-for-money ben­e­fits.

“I be­lieve that the loy­alty of our mem­bers will be well re­warded as we start a new jour­ney to­gether on a clean slate.

“We also re-en­ter the mar­ket as an inim­itable force, of­fer­ing cut­ting edge tech­nol­ogy and in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions.

“I be­lieve that this will not only en­hance our stake­holder’s in­ter­ac­tions but will cat­a­pult us for­ward as a com­pet­i­tive force in the mar­ket place,” says Khauoe.

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