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Southern Cross Supports No-Smoking Ban

10 December 2004

Southern Cross Supports No-Smoking Ban

New Zealand’s largest health insurer, Southern Cross provides incentives to members who are non-smokers and live a healthy lifestyle.

With new non-smoking laws about to hit, the organisation is hoping that new members will be spurred to shake the habit which, along with maintaining a healthy lifestyle, may entitle them to a 10 per cent premium reduction.

Group Chief Executive of Southern Cross Healthcare, Dr Ian McPherson said, “As an organisation that actively promotes good health care we fully support Government initiatives to ensure bars, restaurants and other workplaces have clean air.”

Southern Cross’ new health insurance plans, called Wellbeing, reward new members who declare that they adhere to a healthy lifestyle.

Dr McPherson said, “New members who sign up for the Wellbeing Plan are required to answer four healthy lifestyle-related questions.

“These cover the eating of five or more servings of fruit and vegetables a day, levels of physical activity, alcohol consumption and of course non-smoking.”

Anyone answering favourably to three of the four questions will immediately receive a healthy lifestyle reward which will see them pay 10 per cent less in annual premiums than they would otherwise pay.

“Wellbeing Plans are flexible and in tune with today’s health needs,” Dr McPherson said.

“They offer encouragement to people to be more proactive about developing and following a healthy lifestyle – in the long-term looking after themselves.”

- ends -

Editors Notes:

Southern Cross Healthcare is comprised of two organisations that focus on the health sector in New Zealand:

One organisation, the first created, is the Southern Cross Medical Care Society with over 800,000 members. It is a not for profit Friendly Society that focuses on delivering health insurance services for both individual members and group schemes.

The other organisation is the Southern Cross Health Trust. It consists of the Southern Cross Hospitals, New Zealand’s only private hospital network and Southern Cross Travel Insurance.

ENDS


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