Seminar to examine Health Insurance Sector

18/04/2017 13:49

The Consumer Council of Fiji will host a seminar on Health Insurance on Wednesday, 19th April, 2017 beginning at 9am at the Attorney General’s Conference Room in Suva. The Seminar will be officiated by the Permanent Secretary for Health and Medical Services, Mr. Philip Davies.

The focus of the seminar will be on policies, governance and consumer involvement related to Health Insurance in Fiji. The aim of the seminar is to bring together all key stakeholders to discuss the problems faced by insured and to find a way-forward so that our policies are relevant and protects not only insurers but also insured.  

There is clearly a need for the revision of this Act with the aim to strengthen consumer protection elements and to align the legislation with recent developments taking place globally. Such reforms will provide consumers with the confidence that the policies they purchase will provide them with real value.

The Council has received several complaints regarding Health Insurance products and services. As a result there is a need for an immediate attention towards the interests of the consumers. The problems demonstrate that the insurance sector in Fiji is not disclosing key features of the policies at the outset in the form that consumers can understand. There are insurance products sold in the market which is of no value to consumers when they have to queue up at a public hospital despite paying premium.  In some cases, there is no real benefit derived by the insured despite making the premium payments.

The seminar will consist of a panel discussion where the relevant authorities will come together to discuss the major issues which the Health Insurance consumers are confronted with during the phase of treatments and other services. The panelists for the day include representatives from the Insurance Industry, Reserve Bank of Fiji, Ministry of Health, General Practitioners Association, Fiji Medical Association, and Fiji Optometric Association.

Fiji's insurance industry is regulated by the Insurance Act (1998). The purpose is "to provide the regulation of the business of insurance, for the licensing and supervision of insurers and insurance intermediaries, and for related matters.”