Thursday 17 April 2014

How forum aims to cut premiums

THE forum is supposed to work with insurance companies and the Department of Health to bring down the cost of private health insurance.

The independent chair of the group is former HSE deputy chief executive Pat McLoughlin.

Mr McLoughlin is the chief executive of the Irish Payment Services Organisation.

Previously, he was director of the National Hospitals Office and deputy CEO of the HSE.

He is also a member of the Special Group on Public Service Numbers and Expenditure Programmes, known as An Bord Snip Nua, and chairman of the Local Government Efficiency Review.

Mr McLoughlin is due to deliver a second report to the minister in three months.

Here are the recommendations of the first report:

* To ensure patients are treated at the lowest possible cost -- but consistent with quality -- insurance companies should use information on the appropriate hospitals for carrying out individual procedures.

* Insurance companies should use this information to query cases which are claimed as an in-patient when the procedures could have been carried out on a day basis, with no overnight admission.

* Insurance companies will give data to help get a more detailed analysis of what is driving the rising costs of private health insurance.

* The clinical audit and utilisation arrangements being used by insurers will be checked to see if they are in line with best international practice.

* An established price should be fixed for each case or patient treatment.

* Insurance companies to publicly acknowledge that fraud and malpractice exist and publish data on the extent of money recovered from hospitals and consultants.

* Bring in measures to encourage younger members into the market, through a financial penalty for people who take out health insurance for the first time after the age of 30 -- known as lifetime community rating.

* Prove commitment to attract people aged 18-29.

* Discount premiums for full-time students up to the age of 23;

* Speed up the time it takes for hospitals and insurers to process claims.

* Public hospitals to bring in debt management comparable to private hospitals.

* Bring in written contracts between insurance companies and public hospitals for claims and payments.

* Agree timescales for submission of bills by hospitals and payment of claims by insurance companies.

Irish Independent

Also in this Section





Now available on

Top Stories

Most Read

Independent Gallery

Your photos

Send us your weather photos promo

Celebrity News