A PYMNTS Company

Australia: ACCC blasts health insurers

 |  October 20, 2015

In a scathing report on the industry, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission says a “number of market failures” left customers struggling to compare policies because they were so complex.

The Turnbull Government seized on the report to promise a fix for the health insurance industry’s ailments.

The insurer’s peak lobby group laid the blame for complexity on government regulation of the sector and argued that the raft of policies on offer was good for consumer choice.

More than 11 million Australians have health insurance, including 1.4 million in WA, but the ACCC fears many are not getting value for money or selecting the right level of cover.

Citing a flood of cheap policies that help people avoid government penalties for not having insurance, the ACCC accused some funds of encouraging members to downgrade their cover to reduce premiums.

“As funds respond to market demand for affordable policies, there are increasing policy limitations and exclusions leading to an increased risk of unexpected out-of-pocket expenses and general dissatisfaction,” the report said.

Full content: The Australian

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.