Medibank announces a package in excess of $50 million to support customers during the coronavirus
Medibank and ahm are introducing an initial support package in excess of $50 million to assist customers through the most significant health and economic challenge Australia has seen in 100 years.
The package includes:
• Regardless of an existing customer’s level of hospital cover, we will pay benefits towards chest, heart, lung and kidney hospital admissions related to the coronavirus. This includes customers with Basic and Bronze levels of cover
• Introducing a specific financial hardship policy allowing customers to suspend their policy or access some relief on their premium payments
• Introducing additional clinical support systems for customers with coronavirus who are in self isolation at home as well as customers with chronic and complex health conditions
• Medibank customers can continue to access our 24/7 Medibank Nurse and Mental Health Phone Support lines
• Launch of Live Better at Home to help Australians prioritise their health as more people spend time at home
• Donation of $5 million to Beyond Blue to support their vital work to help Australians deal with the growing mental health impact of the coronavirus
• Introduction of 2 weeks special coronavirus leave (fully paid leave for any Medibank and ahm team member permanent, fixed term or casual)
• Employed and trained an additional 400 new nurses in recent weeks to join the nation’s response to coronavirus – to meet the increasing demand from Australians for national coronavirus helpline services
Medibank CEO Craig Drummond said:
“Medibank is working hard to support our customers, our community and our people.
“This is the time that our customers need us the most. It is important for our customers to know that Medibank, and our people, are here to support them.
“We recognise that for some of our customers they are worried about how they can afford their healthcare cover right now. It’s our job to help them through this.
“Customers who are experiencing financial hardship can contact us to access options that suit them, including changes to or suspensions of their cover or support to help them with premium payments. We are also ensuring that we will provide chest, heart, lung and kidney coverage for coronavirus no matter what level of hospital cover our customers have.
“We hope these initiatives go some way to relieve the stress and anxiety our customers are experiencing, and we are committed to ensuring that our customers benefit from unforeseen financial gains in light of the Australian Government’s cancellation of non-urgent elective surgery in private hospitals to free up critical health resources.
“We recognise that we have an important role to play in supporting all Australians during this difficult period.
“Medibank customers can contact us on 132 331 or via live chat on the website, while ahm customers can call our team on 1300 510 126 to discuss the options available.
“As the Prime Minister said this week, everyone who has a job in this economy is an essential worker.
“That’s why I am also focused on keeping our almost 4,000 people in their jobs. Additionally, we’ve also just employed another 400 nurses as part of our contribution to the nation’s response to coronavirus.
“Medibank’s telehealth team is playing a crucial role in supporting the public via a range of coronavirus helplines. This team is receiving in excess of 12,000 calls a day from across the country.
“Telehealth has a pivotal role in Australia’s response to coronavirus and the ramp up of these services means hospitals can re-focus on those that need critical care in hospital.
“There is nothing normal about the way we are living and working right now, but by looking after each other, we will be able to help protect the health of the community and our critical healthcare workers.
“I want to thank the nurses and doctors for their brilliant efforts to tackle the virus.
“I also want to take this opportunity to publicly thank the incredible efforts of our people and the way in which they are supporting each other and supporting our customers.”
“The escalating situation has people worried, not just about themselves and their loved ones, but also about the impact on the broader community and to the economy and jobs.
“The coronavirus and the changes that are coming with it is having a major impact on the mental health of Australians.
“In response Medibank is also donating $5 million to Beyond Blue to support their vital work to help Australians deal with the growing impact of the coronavirus.
“Beyond Blue is providing care, advice and support to a great many people in our community, including some of our most vulnerable.”
Health and wellbeing
Medibank has launched Live Better at Home to help Australians prioritise their health as more people spend more time at home.
Live Better takes a holistic approach to health under the pillars ‘Eat’, ‘Move’ and ‘Feel’. We’ll be sharing content on lunch and snack recipes, work outs and stretching sessions that can be done at home and are available to everyone.
Follow Medibank on Facebook, Instagram or head to www.medibank.com.au/livebetterathome for the latest activities.
You can also join us at 8.30am every weekday until 17 April for a guided live meditation.
At a time like this, we know a lot of our customers have questions, so we have put more of our people on the phone and live chat to be able to support them.
We can also assist customers through our retail network – with their nearest store and current open hours listed on our website.
We have closed seven stores due to concerns around adequate hand washing facilities and we have reduced the hours of our 76 other stores as we balance the needs of our customers and the health and wellbeing of our Medibank retail teams.
Rest assured, when stores are not open, our people are being redeployed across our other channels, working remotely from home.
Medibank is now effectively operating as a virtual business.
The majority of our people across the country have been working from home for the past 2 weeks.
Now more than ever we need to keep looking after each other, so we can support our customers and help to protect the health of our community.
Medibank is also helping to support the health and wellbeing of our employees with the introduction of paid Special Leave of 2 weeks to support any Medibank and ahm team member (permanent, fixed term or casual) who may be affected by coronavirus.
All figures are in Australian dollars
These support measures apply to residential customers
Emily Ritchie – 0429 642 418