Southern Cross Health Insurance (SCHI) has launched Cancer Cover Plus to give members more choice when it comes to chemotherapy, including increased access to cancer drugs not subsidised by government-funded Pharmac.
Cancer Cover Plus is available as an upgrade on the following plans: KiwiCare, KiwiCare Budget, RegularCare, RegularCare Budget, Wellbeing One, Wellbeing Two, UltraCare Base and UltraCare 400 plans.
There are also two optional upgrades – Chemotherapy 100 (benefit limit of $100,000) and Chemotherapy 300 (benefit limit of $300,000). This covers the cost of Pharmac and non-Pharmac, Medsafe indicated chemotherapy drugs and their administration for the treatment of cancer, says the insurer.
Nick Astwick, CEO of SCHI, says Cancer Cover Plus will complement the unlimited surgical and radiotherapy benefits the insurer offers in most of its plans.
The Southern Cross Healthy Futures Report 2020 revealed that 79 per cent of New Zealanders are concerned about not having access to cancer treatment services and 59 per cent are worried about experiencing or developing an illness or disease.
“Not all cancer drugs are funded by Pharmac which makes them unaffordable for many people,” says Astwick. “We created this new cancer cover so Kiwis could have faster access and more treatment options to receive potentially lifesaving chemotherapy drugs if they need to.”
Currently SCHI members can access benefits of between $48,000 and $60,000 per claims year for Pharmac approved chemotherapy drugs. This includes $8,000 to $10,000 per claims year for non-Pharmac approved, Medsafe indicated chemotherapy drugs.