Southern Cross announces new health insurance plan for younger Kiwis

Monday, 18 April 2016 by Aimee Bourke

Southern Cross Health Society has announced the release of a new health insurance product specifically designed for younger individuals, couples and families.

Designed as an entry-level plan, Wellbeing Starter is the result of Southern Cross working directly with its target market to tailor a plan specifically to their needs and budget.

Head of Product and Marketing Chris Watney says the benefits provided by Wellbeing Starter were hand-picked by exactly the type of people Southern Cross wants to engage in health insurance. “We know from our research that there is a group of typically younger people who are interested in protecting their health or the health of their family, but can’t see anything in the market that meets their needs.

“In our research – which included one-on-one interviews and a survey of a further 1,500 young adults – we heard exactly what they wanted and more importantly what they didn’t. This enabled us to focus on benefits that are important to them, at a price they are willing to pay,” says Watney.

Topping the list of health insurance ‘must-haves’ for this group was cover for cardiac and cancer related treatment, some surgical cover and an every-day component that can be used at the GP or physiotherapy.

Wellbeing Starter benefits include:

  • $500,000 surgical cover
  • $100,000 cardiac cover
  • $60,000 for cancer care, including $10,000 for non-Pharmac drugs
  • $40,000 prophylactic treatment allowance
  • $3,000 for skin surgery
  • 75% of expenses for GP and physiotherapy visits up to $150 per claims year (in total)

Watney says lower Wellbeing Starter premiums have been achieved by excluding all coverage for orthopaedics, gynaecology and urology unless it’s directly required for the treatment of cancer.

“This may not be the plan that best suits our target market when they reach 40 – but it covers what they told us was important to them right now.”

Wellbeing Starter is the most basic surgical plan offered by Southern Cross. Compared to Southern Cross’ next level major medical plan Wellbeing One, premiums for a 30 year old non-smoking male on Wellbeing Starter are around 20 percent lower.

Wellbeing Starter is part of Southern Cross’ simplified product range which now  consists of just five health insurance products for new Southern Cross members.


For everyday healthcare, it provides 75% cover for GP consultations, dental and optical, physiotherapy, dietitian, acupuncture, chiropractor, osteopathy and remedial massage up to the policy limits.

Wellbeing Starter

A plan for cancer care, some surgical treatment*, plus specialist consultations, imaging and tests within six months of related eligible healthcare services. *excludes cover for orthopaedics, gynaecology and urology unless directly required for the treatment of cancer.

Wellbeing One

A plan for surgery and cancer care, as well as specialist consultations, imaging and tests within six months of a related eligible healthcare service.

Wellbeing Two

A plan for surgery, cancer care, specialist consultations, imaging and tests and optional day-to-day and other healthcare.


The most comprehensive plan, it provides for a wide range of healthcare services including surgery, cancer care, imaging, tests, specialist consultations and day-to-day treatment.


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