With consumers reeling from the recent petrol price hikes and with steep medical scheme contribution increases on the cards from January, knowing how to get the best cover from your medical aid is crucial.
“Your pharmacist can help you to better manage your benefits so that you don’t run out of medical savings mid-year,” Craig Small, Clicks Merchandise Executive: Pharmacy, says. “This includes taking advantage of funded preventative health screenings, which are paid out of risk, and rather using your medical savings to pay for visits to the doctor or specialist. Regular health checks are also the first step in detecting health problems early, so they can be treated before they reach an advanced stage.”
By following a few simple guidelines, consumers can make their medical aid benefits last longer. Here is how:
How can I avoid out-of-pocket expenses?
- Medical schemes charge a levy or co-payments when customers shop outside the approved designated or preferred service provider network. Make sure your pharmacy is on the approved Designated Service Provider network.
- Choose a generic alternative. Medical schemes are more likely to pay in full for a generic medicine, which use the same active ingredient, strength, and dosage form as original brand medicines.
- Find out if your chronic medication is on the approved formulary list, which is paid for at a specially negotiated rate by your medical aid.
- Most pharmacies don’t charge administration fees, so if yours does, shop around.
- Tap into your pharmacy’s reward programme – e.g. Clicks ClubCard members earn ClubCard points off the dispensing fee.
- Have essential medicines handy to treat symptoms fast and use the OTC (Over-The-Counter) benefit that covers self-medication.