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Older people priced out of insurance

Almost a third of baby boomers have reduced their health insurance cover to keep the cost of their premiums down, research shows.

Tuesday, March 28th 2017, 6:00AM

The average cost of health insurance for New Zealanders has hit $2,210 a year, according to a Canstar Blue survey.

For Baby Boomers, it is now $3,765.

The survey found 45% of Baby Boomers had restricted their health insurance cover because it was too expensive to have a full policy.

“There is no doubt that baby boomers are feeling the pinch when it comes to the rising cost of health insurance," Canstar's general manager Jose George said.

"Although an overwhelming majority of our older generation liked the peace of mind health insurance provides, unfortunately two in five of them will sacrifice spending in other areas in order to be able to pay their premiums."

But he said older people’s claims were three times more likely to be for serious illness, which made them more expensive to cover.

"This may also explain why baby boomers are three times more likely to stay with their insurer due to pre-existing conditions.”

The over-65 age group now makes up more than 14% of the population.

Tags: health insurance

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