Maternity Benefits of Major Insurance Companies in New Zealand. If you are planning a pregnancy, this article is for you!

27 May 2022

Disclaimer:
This publication has been provided for general information only. Although every effort has been made to ensure this publication is accurate the contents should not be relied upon or used as a basis for entering into any products described in this publication. To the extent that any information or recommendations in this publication constitute financial advice, they do not take into account any person’s particular financial situation or goals. We strongly recommend readers seek independent legal/financial advice prior to acting in relation to any of the matters discussed in this publication. No person involved in this publication accepts any liability for any loss or damage whatsoever which may directly or indirectly result from any advice, opinion, information, representation, or omission, whether negligent or otherwise, contained in this publication.

Looking at recent statistics, it appears that people being stuck at home during the pandemic lockdowns is creating a bit of a “baby boom”.

According to local media outlet “NZ Herald”, new data from Stats NZ puts the number of live births in New Zealand at 59,382 in the year to September 2021. This is not only an increase from 57,753 in the previous year, but is also the highest number of live births since 2015. 1

YG Financial Services has also noticed the ‘baby boom’, as many female friends have recently come to enquire: Which insurance company has better maternity benefits, and should you consider maternity benefits when purchasing medical insurance?

Today, YG Financial Services will look at the maternity benefits included in the health insurance products of major insurance companies, and at the same time talk to you about the main factors to consider when choosing medical insurance.

  1. Maternity benefits in health insurance

You may be thinking. ‘Isn’t it free to receive maternity care in New Zealand? Do you still need medical insurance?’

New Zealand is indeed a welfare country that encourages childbirth. The public medical system provides various benefits for expecting mothers, such as midwives, maternity leave and various subsidies, etc. These services are free.

However, some women may experience complications during pregnancy, such as gestational hypertension (high blood pressure), gestational diabetes, etc. In these situations, your midwife or family doctor will recommend you see a private obstetrician to ensure that both the mother and foetus stay safe. This is where medical insurance and its maternity benefits come into play.

 

  1. Maternity benefits provided by New Zealand’s major health insurance companies

In New Zealand, the maternity benefits included within health insurance policies differs from company to company. For your reference, YG Financial Services will lay it out clearly for you below. (The following content has collated according to the policy documents of the respective insurance companies prior to May 2022.)

 

Accuro

Insurance Name: SmartCare+ with the add-on Specialist plan

Benefit: Covers specialist consultation and treatment during pregnancy, including infertility specialist consultation and treatment

Claim Amount: Up to $2000 per policy year

Requirements: 3 consecutive years of insurance coverage prior to the pregnancy in order to enjoy this maternity benefit

 

AIA

Insurance Name: Private Health

Benefit: Covers the cost of referral from a registered doctor, specialist or registered midwife to a private obstetrician to assess and monitor complications of pregnancy

Claim Amount: Up to $2,000 per policy year

 

Insurance name: Private Health Plus

Benefits: All the benefits of Private Health, and in addition obstetric care (including scans), and infertility treatment are covered. The corresponding accommodation costs are also included.

Claim Amount: Up to $1500 per insured, per pregnancy, per policy year

Requirements: If you want AIA Private Health Plus, you must first purchase AIA Private Health and choose to upgrade to Private Health Plus. The maternity benefits of this cover are only available to those who have held this insurance for two consecutive years. There is no excess to pay for claims.

 

nib

Insurance Name: Ultimate Health Max

Benefit: Covers the cost of referral from a family doctor or registered specialist to a private obstetrician to assess and monitor complications during pregnancy.

Claim Amount: Up to $4,000 per policy year

Requirements: Must be insured before pregnancy

 

Southern Cross

Insurance Name: Wellbeing Two

Benefits: Covers obstetric care and services provided by specialists registered in Obstetrics and Gynaecology or Anaesthesiology, corresponding accommodation and 2D and Ultrasound examinations.

Claim Amount: $750 per claim year

Requirements: You can enjoy this benefit after you have been insured for a full year, and there is a claims excess.

 

Insurance Name: UltraCare

Benefits: Covers obstetric care and services provided by specialists registered in Obstetrics and Gynaecology or Anaesthesiology, corresponding accommodation and 2D and Ultrasound examinations.

Claim Amount: $1000 per claim year

Requirements: You can enjoy this benefit after you have been insured for 1 full year.

 

  1. Don’t forget – Maternity benefits are not the main criteria for choosing medical insurance

After reading the maternity benefits provided by the insurance companies mentioned above and their different health insurance products, if you have plans for pregnancy you may want to ask whether you should choose your health insurance according to the best maternity benefits.

Here YG Financial Services would like to remind everyone that maternity benefits are not the focus when purchasing medical insurance, nor is it the main indicator to measure whether medical insurance is suitable for you.

Why do you say that?

As we said earlier, the fertility-related benefits of the New Zealand public system are already very comprehensive. If women are healthy during pregnancy and the process of giving birth is smooth, it is unlikely that they will use medical insurance.

If the pregnant woman has complications during pregnancy, your midwife or family doctor can refer you to see a private obstetrician, and the pregnant woman will use the pregnancy-related benefits in her medical insurance. However, the amount that can be claimed under these benefits is not high. We have listed the maternity benefits of medical insurance from multiple insurance companies in New Zealand. Each policy year the claim amount equates to a maximum of about $4000 per person.

So the purpose of buying medical insurance is not for the fertility benefits.

The real purpose of health insurance in New Zealand is to get timely and efficient examination and treatment when we are sick. There are really two main factors to consider when choosing medical insurance:

  1. The coverage of the insurance, such as whether it will cover surgery, hospitalization, drugs, overseas treatment, etc.
  2. The speed of processing insurance claims and whether it is efficient.

 

Still have questions about maternity benefits?

Don’t know which pregnancy-related medical costs can be reimbursed?

Not sure how to choose medical insurance?

Come and chat with YG Financial Services!

 

  1. https://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/lockdown-baby-boom-number-of-births-in-2021-highest-since-2015/CTGSOOZV62E462S7LNN4K3JYHQ/

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