5 Best Medical Aids for Foreigners Living in South Africa
The 5 Best Medical Aids for Foreigners Living in South Africa revealed.
We tested them side by side and verified their medical aid plans.
This is a complete guide to the best medical aid for Foreigners Living in South Africa.
In this in-depth guide you’ll learn:
- What is a Medical Aid?
- How should a foreigner decide on medical aid in South Africa?
- Are there waiting periods for medical aid for foreigners in South Africa?
- Which medical aids are cheap in South Africa for International Students?
- What are hospital fees for foreigners in South Africa?
- What includes medical cover in South Africa?
So if you’re ready to go “all in” with the best medical aid for foreigners in South Africa, this guide is for you.
Let’s dive right in…
Best Medical Aids for Foreigners Living in South Africa (2023)
|🩺 Medical Aid||✔️ Offers Plans for Foreigners?||⚕️ Plan Offered||👉 Sign Up|
|1. Discovery Health||Yes||Discovery KeyCare Plan||👉 Apply Now|
|2. Bonitas||Yes||Boncap Student||👉 Apply Now|
|3. Momentum Medical Aid||Yes||Ingwe Student Option||👉 Apply Now|
|4. Medshield||Yes||Premium Plus||👉 Apply Now|
|5. FedHealth||Yes||flexiFED Savvy||👉 Apply Now|
5 Best Medical Aids for Foreigners Living in South Africa Summary
Introduction to Best Medical Aids for Foreigners Living in South Africa
If you are a foreigner who lives and works in South Africa, you are most likely aware of the exorbitant prices that are charged by private medical facilities around the country.
It is possible that the price of your medical care might bankrupt you if you are involved in an accident or if you get a major illness. Even for very basic medical care, the price might be too expensive.
You do have the option of utilising the public healthcare services even when you are a foreign national. Despite this, it is not something that can be advised. The public hospitals and clinics in South Africa are struggling under a tremendous amount of pressure and are unable to provide the same level of medical treatment that is normally accessible in other parts of the world, such as Europe or the United States.
Who Qualifies for Medical Aid?
It is possible that you will be eligible to enrol in a medical aid programme if you intend to remain in South Africa for an extended period of time. The sole need is that you be in possession of a current working, student, or residency visa in addition to a valid passport.
If there is a South African bank account to pay for the cover (it can be someone else’s account), most plans will allow foreigners to join as long as there is a South African bank account. When it comes to vacationers, you will either need to get travel insurance or pay for all of your consultations, medications, and treatments, both inside and outside of the hospital, out of your own personal funds.
What Benefits Are Foreigners Entitled to?
You will have access to the same medical aid advantages that South Africans get, notwithstanding the fact that you are a foreign national. The kind of plan or alternative that you sign up for will determine the extent of protection that you have access to.
Comprehensive choices and hospital plans make up the two primary types of medical aid available in South Africa. Benefits for both in-hospital and outpatient care are included in a complete plan. In-hospital consultations and treatments are covered by the expenses that are deducted from your hospital plan.
These broad categories are further subdivided into a plethora of possibilities, such as medical savings accounts, healthcare networks, and benefit systems that are determined by one’s income level.
Exclusions and waiting periods
According to the terms and regulations of the medical aid programme, any and all new members of the scheme might be required to observe particular waiting periods and be ineligible for certain benefits.
It is possible, for instance, that there will be a three-month waiting time. After signing up for a plan, you will not be eligible for any coverage until the waiting period is finished. During this time, you will not be eligible for any coverage.
If you already have a medical condition when you join up for medical aid, you probably will not be eligible for the benefits connected to the treatment and care of that illness for the first year that you are a member of the scheme. This is because pre-existing conditions are considered to be more expensive to treat.
Before entering into a legally binding agreement, it is important to get professional guidance and carefully review the terms and circumstances.
Discovery Health Medical Scheme (DHMS) is one of the largest open medical schemes in South Africa. Anyone can join, as long as they follow the rules of the Scheme.
The Discovery Health Medical Scheme gives more than 20 options for health plans, each with unlimited private hospital coverage and a variety of benefits to fit your needs and your budget.
The Executive Plan offers customers the most extensive cover for in-hospital and day-to-day benefits, as well as extended chronic medicine cover and an unlimited Above Threshold Benefit.
This series of plans provide comprehensive cover for in-hospital and day-to-day cover with extended chronic medicine cover and unlimited Above Threshold Benefit.
These plans offer cost-effective in-hospital cover, essential chronic medicine cover and day-to-day benefits with a limited Above Threshold Benefit.
This series is economical, provides in-hospital cover, essential chronic medicine cover and day-to-day benefits through a Medical Savings Account.
This is a value-for-money series of hospital plans that provide unlimited private hospital cover and essential cover for chronic medicine but with no day-to-day cover.
This series of plans provide the most cost-effective in-hospital cover, essential chronic medicine cover plus limited day-to-day cover if you use providers in a specified network.
This basic series of plans offer affordable medical cover providing you use providers in a specified network for both in-hospital and out-of-hospital treatment.
Bonitas offers a wide variety of plans so that any family can find one that fits their needs perfectly.
The plans are easy to understand and use while helping the customer to get the most out of their benefits.
This category gives access to day-to-day benefits including unlimited GP consultations, layers of virtual care, dental and optical consultations, a private hospital network and more. Options include:
BonStart & BonStart Plus Plans
This option gives young, economically active foreigners a good start-up option.
These plans give an overall day-to-day limit with sub-limits for GP and specialist consultations, acute and over-the-counter medicine, X-rays and blood tests and other out-of-hospital medical expenses.
These options offer simple day-to-day benefits and hospital cover, using a network of quality providers to offer modest day-to-day benefits and hospital cover.
These plans give you a set amount that you can use however you want for out-of-hospital costs like doctor visits, optometry, and dentistry. They also cover you while you’re in the hospital and give you extra benefits for maternity, wellness, and preventative care.
This first-class savings plan offers ample savings, an above threshold benefit and extensive hospital cover.
These plans cover you for emergency and planned procedures in hospital and you get access to some additional benefits for wellness and preventative care.
Momentum Health is run by one of South Africa’s largest and most trustworthy healthcare solutions companies.
Momentum Medical Scheme gives access to a wide range of medical insurance plans and benefits, including 6 medical aid plans.
This option gives cover for hospitalisation from the Evolve Network of private hospitals with no overall annual limit.
With this option you get extensive hospital and chronic cover from any or associated providers. Day-to-day expenses is covered by a dedicated medical savings account funded by 10% of your monthly contributions
This option gives extensive hospital cover and additional chronic cover from any or associated providers. 25% of your contributions go to your dedicated medical savings account from which your day-to-day expenses are paid. You get the Extended Cover benefit once you have reached your Threshold.
This option gives unlimited private hospital cover from any provider. A chronic cover is available for an additional 36 conditions and day-to-day benefits up to R29 700 per beneficiary per year are covered.
Medshield offers a choice of 10 different plan options. The Compact options have compulsory use of networks and care co-ordination, nominating a Family Practitioner and the Family Practitioner-to-Specialist referral process, resulting in cheaper contributions.
Premium Plus is good for couples and single people who need a lot of medical coverage. It covers hospital stays at any hospital of your choice and pays 200% of expert bills while you are in the hospital.
MediBonus is good for people who need a lot of medical coverage. It covers hospital stays at any hospital of your choice and pays 200% of expert bills while you are in the hospital. Co-payments are required for a long list of treatments, and only a few of them can be done in the hospital.
MediPlus is good for single people and young families. It gives you unlimited hospital coverage at a network of hospitals, and 100% of your expert bills while you are in the hospital are paid for. Co-payments are required for a long list of treatments, and only a few of them can be done in the hospital.
MediSaver is good for people and families who are young and healthy. It gives you unlimited hospital coverage at a network of hospitals, and 100% of your expert bills while you are in the hospital are paid for. There is a long list of medical treatments that have co-payments, and a short list of things that do not have co-payments.
MediCore is a hospital plan that is best for people who are young and healthy. It gives endless hospital coverage at a network of hospitals, and it pays 200% of the bills for specialists while they are in the hospital.
MediValue Prime & Compact is good for people and families who are young and healthy. It gives you unlimited hospital coverage at a network of hospitals, and 100% of your expert bills while you are in the hospital are paid for.
MediSwift is an unlimited hospital plan that pays for big medical problems that happen while you are in the hospital. MediSwift offers unlimited in-hospital coverage through the Compact Hospital Network.
MediPhilia is best for people who are young and strong. There is a maximum of R1,000,000 per family for hospital care at a network of hospitals, and 100% of expert bills paid in hospitals.
MediCurve is a cheap digital plan that makes it possible for young, healthy, tech-savvy people who are purchasing medical aid for the first time to do so without putting a financial pressure on their daily lives.
Fedhealth gives its members access to medical care that they can manage themselves.
Fedhealth is also known for its unique benefits paid from Risk, which help members get more out of their regular benefits.
The medical aid plans offered by Fedhealth are made to fit your needs, budget, and stage of life. You can choose from a variety of options, including coverage if you’ve never had medical aid before, the innovative flexiFED options that let you make your own aid, and the maxiFED options that offer the most comprehensive medical aid coverage.
myFED and flexiFED Savvy offer affordable (salary-banded) cover for lower income, previously uncovered employees.
flexiFED 1 and flexiFED 2 are affordable hospital plans that give solid medical aid cover at a great price. Members can get access to Fedhealth Savings to help cover unexpected day-to-day medical bills and a Threshold Benefit that kicks in once your claims have reached a certain level.
flexiFED 3 and flexiFED 4 are ideal for young, growing families. It supports them with generous maternity and childhood benefits for pregnancy, birth and the busy early childhood years.
Apart from comprehensive in-hospital cover, it also offers Fedhealth Savings for unplanned medical bills and a Threshold benefit once claims have accumulated to a certain level.
maxima EXEC and maxima PLUS offer comprehensive all-round cover for more mature members. Apart from in-hospital, chronic medicine, screening and additional benefits, it has a day-to-day savings portion and Threshold benefit.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can a foreigner have a medical aid in South Africa?
Yes, medical aid cover is available for foreigners and their family living and working in South Africa but depends on the type of visa one has while in the country.
Do foreigners pay in public hospitals in South Africa?
Foreign nationals have the right to free basic health care and only pay when they need primary healthcare because the South African Constitution states that everyone is entitled to basic healthcare whether they are a South African Citizen or not.
Can foreigners get the same benefits as citizens from a medical aid?
Yes, foreigners are entitled to get the same benefits as citizens from the medical aid plan they join.
What are the requirements for medical aid in South Africa for foreigners?
These requirements typically include legal residency, proof of identity and residence documents, income proofing documents and potentially being evaluated through health assessment processes. Some plans might impose waiting periods before certain benefits apply while effective communication in English or another official language may also be essential to joining. Enrolling involves filling out forms, providing documents to support application as well as attending orientation events before you can get health coverage.
Can I get medical aid as a foreigner in South Africa if I’m not working?
Medical aid premiums tend to depend on an individual’s income and ability to pay. Without regular employment income or resources available to you, meeting financial requirements of an insurance plan might present difficulties for nonworking members of society. Eligibility criteria and policies differ among medical aid schemes; individuals not currently employed may still have options available – some schemes even permit joining as dependent if supported financially by working family members, for instance.