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Vhi international pays out over €6.6 million in 2012

The insurance company paid out €4.1 million in medical and hospital cases, and €330,000 in maternity claims.

VHI INTERNATIONAL, THE expatriate health insurance product from Vhi Healthcare, paid out over €6.6 million on behalf of its customers last year.

The top three benefit categories in 2012 were:

  • Medical and hospital cases (€4.1 million)
  • Maternity claims (€330,000)
  • Dental care (€145,000)

The results show that Vhi International customers in Australia made the most claims last year, accounting for over 40 per cent of the claims paid, followed by the UK (over 16 per cent) and the US (approximately 13 per cent).

The three most expensive claims paid on behalf of Vhi International customers last year were all from the US:

  • Almost €760,000 for premature birth
  • €580,000 for premature birth
  • €375,000 for treatment of cancer

Vhi International offers expatriate insurance cover for people who move abroad to live, work, study or travel for more than six months and also provides cover for customers choosing to receive treatment at home.

Ireland

Vhi International customers returning to Ireland for treatment accounted for approximately 24 per cent of the claims paid in 2012, and the number of them returning to Ireland for treatment has trebled over the past five years.

Nearly 900 customers returned to Ireland in 2012 compared with approximately 260 in 2008. The claims paid on behalf of these customers has also increased dramatically with €630,000 paid out in 2012 compared with approximately €188,000 in 2008.

The top five claims made by customers returning to Ireland were for:

  • Abdominal or pelvic swelling (approximately €32,000)
  • Kidney stones (approx. €25,000)
  • Alzheimer’s disease (€18,500)
  • Pneumonia (€14,800).

The most frequent claims were for dental examinations (194), eye examinations (64) and non-cancerous skin complaints (56). While 68 per cent of claims were for outpatient visits, 20 per cent were for day-case procedures and 12 per cent were for in-patient treatment.

Vhi International now provides a benefit for medically appropriate repatriation. Last year, Vhi Healthcare repatriated almost 400 customers. The top three countries for repatriations were Spain (141 cases at a total cost of €541,503), US (41 cases at a total cost of €383,718) and France (32 cases at a total cost of €111,182).

The three most expensive repatriations in 2012 were all from the US and were approximately €60,000, €56,000 and €51,000, involving Vhi customers who had been involved in car accidents or who had suffered a stroke. The average repatriation costs for an air ambulance was €150,000 from Australia and New Zealand, €59-65,000 from the US and €9,000 from France.

Read: One in three families plan to give up private healthcare>

Read: Numbers with private health insurance fall by 64,000 in 2012>

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