THE pressure on health insurance premiums is set to ratchet up with moves by Health Minister James Reilly to push up the levy on policies by a quarter.
The higher levies, due to come in from March, will add €180 to the cost of insuring a family of two adults and two children. Funds from the levy mainly go to the State-owned VHI to compensate it for having the lion's share of older, and more expensive, customers.
It is hard to see how the VHI's rivals – Laya, Aviva and GloHealth – will not be forced to load the higher cost of the levies on to their customers.
This is on top of what seems like a never-ending cycle of premium hikes. Only last month Laya raised its premiums, with most going up by 13pc.
VHI and Aviva have also recently pushed up prices.
Many families will be asking themselves if they can continue to pay.