66,000 people drop health insurance in advance of fresh hikes
UP TO 66,000 people dropped their health insurance cover last year, according to the Health Insurance Authority.
It says that over two million people had cover at the end of December. That is 47pc of the population are covered.
And it added that the average premium paid for each insured person last year was €926, an increase of 6pc on the previous year.
But the number of people insured has been in decline since the end of 2008, with a total of 66,000 quitting.
Planned price increases will come into effect on Thursday. This means VHI, Quinn Healthcare and Aviva customers renewing their insurance in March are facing significant increases in premiums.
Health insurance experts say in some instances people could save money either by switching to a different insurer, or moving to corporate health insurance plans, which offer an equivalent level.