Premium rate reductions
To help relieve some of the financial stress that many of our members are experiencing, we are passing on premium rate reductions of 15% for hospital cover and 30% for extras to all members, for the insurance period covering May and June 2020.
We are continuously assessing the potential impact of the pandemic on current and future claims, and the ways we can return value back to members. We believe that social distancing and the suspension of non-urgent elective surgery will lead to reduced claims. It is uncertain how long this period of lower claiming will last, and we expect to see a higher than normal level of claims, once elective surgery restrictions are lifted.
You do not need to do anything to receive your reduction. If you have a premium payment due between 1 May and 30 June 2020, we will automatically reduce the premium to be paid and advise you of the reduced amount.
If you have pre-paid your premium beyond 30 June 2020, we will extend your period of cover and there will be a pro-rated reduction of your next premium payment.
Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.
Measures to support members during COVID-19
1 April 2020 premium increase has been deferred
We have deferred our 1 April 2020 premium increases to 1 October 2020. This means all premium payments up to 30 September will be at the current rate. If you have pre-paid your premiums, you don’t need to do anything, as you have already paid the current premium rate.
Cover for COVID-19 under all hospital policies
All members with a hospital policy will be fully covered if admitted to hospital as a private patient due to COVID-19. This includes members with Smart Starter Bronze Plus, regardless of the exclusions and restrictions that apply on this policy. Normal waiting periods apply for new members.
Options for financial relief
If you are experiencing financial hardship because of COVID-19, options are available for financial relief.
We encourage you to contact our Member Services team to discuss your situation and the options available. Each submission will be reviewed confidentially and, on a case-by-case basis.
Continued access to allied health services
To continue accessing health services at this time of social distancing and isolation, we have extended our Extras benefits to cover allied health consultations provided by phone or video.
Currently, this applies to the following services:
- Speech pathology
- Occupational therapy
Tele-health and video consultations need to be claimed by sending us an invoice via our app or Online Member Services after the service has occurred. These services cannot be claimed through HICAPS at this time.
Hospital in the home services
For our members managing acute and chronic conditions, particularly those that fall within high-risk groups for COVID-19 including the elderly and those at an increased risk of infection, we have arrangements with a range of providers that offer Hospital in the Home services, ensuring you can receive your treatment safely at home. These services cover a variety of areas, including:
Oncology and Home Infusion Services
Provision of IV antibiotics
With a referral from your doctor, you may be suitable to receive treatment at home. Please speak with your doctor to understand your suitability for Hospital in the Home treatment and contact our Member Services team to discuss what we can offer as part of your health cover with us.
Temporary suspension of non-urgent elective surgery
From 1 April 2020, all non-urgent elective surgery was suspended in private and public hospitals until further notice.
All members with pre-booked admissions need to contact their medical practitioner and hospital as soon as possible, to determine the status of their pending surgery.
Our continued service levels during COVID-19
We have been proactively implementing measures to allow us to continue serving our members as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to escalate. Please rest assured that we anticipate no significant changes or disruptions to the normal level of service provided.
Together with servicing our members, the health and wellbeing of our staff is of paramount importance. Although we have not experienced a case of COVID-19, we must put in to practice measures to reduce any potential risk to our team and the community, which include remote working arrangements. We thank you for your patience for any short delays you may experience during this time.
So please don’t hesitate to still contact us with any enquiries about your health cover, particularly if you have an upcoming admission. Now is also a good time to ensure you have set your login details for our new Online Member Services. Submit your claims, update your payment and other details, check your limits and other policy information, and request a time for us to call you - all online on any device.
Information on Avant’s preparations can be found here.
Avant Mutual website has a comprehensive set of FAQs about the disease, testing, isolation, and medico-legal ramifications.