The financial year to 30 June 2015, saw Southern Cross pay out $738 million – 73 per cent of the country’s health insurance claims.
Southern Cross CEO Peter Tynan said that was a phenomenal amount considering that our 811,462 members make up only 61 per cent of the health insurance market.
“For every dollar received in premiums, the not-for-profit Society paid out an industry-leading 90.2 cents in claims. This clearly represents excellent value for our members, especially when you consider that the average amount for the industry’s for-profit insurers was 60.2 cents in the last financial year."
Peter says Southern Cross is working hard to mitigate rising claims inflation through implementation of the Affiliated Provider strategy.
“By joining the programme, providers are showing support for a sustainable private healthcare sector that remains accessible and affordable for New Zealanders. It also means they are able to better service their patients and receive payment for their services faster than through traditional claiming and payment processes.”
Given the growth of claims and demand for easy access, electronic capability has also been a key focus for the business.
“In streamlining our service, we’ve created tools - such as the ‘My Southern Cross’ portal, where members can manage everything from online claiming and updating contact details to AGM voting online,” Peter says. “Members also have Southern Cross Health Society Easy-claim - point of sale, electronic claiming for eligible items and services. We currently have more than 1,300 Easy-claim providers, including GPs, pharmacies, physiotherapists, optometrists, audiologists and dentists.
“We will continue to develop these and other initiatives in response to member demand for easier and faster service.”