News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


$40 Million Backlog In Health Insurance Claims

9 January 2002

Healthcare providers and policy holders are currently out of pocket by an estimated $40 million dollars as a backlog of unprocessed claims continues to grow at Southern Cross Healthcare, New Zealand’s major health insurer.

Commenting on this today, the New Zealand Private Hospitals Association says that Southern Cross management published an open letter last month citing problems to do with the transition to a new computer system that were causing delays of four to six weeks in claims processing.

NZPHA Executive Director, Lesley Clarke, says that unfortunately things have not improved - surgical claims now taking seven weeks to process while medical claims are up to a six week turn around.

“This is creating a major cash flow issue for hospitals and yet Southern Cross is unwilling to take any steps to alleviate the situation. About 70% of people with private health insurance are Southern Cross members, therefore they account for a very large proportion of all private hospital admissions. With millions of dollars outstanding, hospitals and other providers are finding it impossible to continue to carry the increasing level of debt.”

Ms Clarke says that she expects some hospitals may have no choice but to step up their debt recovery procedures and review payment policies. “Of course we appreciate that many people would find it difficult to pay ‘up front’ while they wait for Southern Cross to process their claims, but on top of other financial pressures there is only so much leeway hospitals can give.”


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

Legendary Bassist David Friesen Plays Wellington’s Newest Jazz Venue

Friesen is touring New Zealand to promote his latest album Another Time, Another Place, recorded live at Auckland's Creative Jazz Club in 2015. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Father - Descending Into The Depths of Dementia

Florian Zeller's dazzling drama The Father explores the effects of a deeply unsettling illness that affects 62,000 Kiwis, a number expected to grow to 102,000 by 2030. More>>

Howard Davis Review: Blade Runner Redivivus

When Ridley Scott's innovative, neo-noir, sci-fi flick Blade Runner was originally released in 1982, at a cost of over $45 million, it was a commercial bomb. More>>

14-21 October: New Zealand Improv Festival In Wellington

Imagined curses, Shibuya’s traffic, the apocalypse, and motherhood have little in common, but all these and more serve as inspiration for the eclectic improvised offerings coming to BATS Theatre this October for the annual New Zealand Improv Festival. More>>


Bird Of The Year Off To A Flying Start

The competition asks New Zealanders to vote for their favourite bird in the hopes of raising awareness of the threats they face. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books:
Jenny Abrahamson's John & Charles Enys: Castle Hill Runholders, 1864-1891

This volume will be of interest to a range of readers interested in the South Island high country, New Zealand’s natural environment, and the history of science. More>>