The Association of Medical Insurers and Intermediaries (AMII) is to lobby the Government for health insurance to be exempt from Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) following two increases in the tax in less than a year.
AMII chairman Stuart Scullion, made the announcement at the organisation’s AGM which was held yesterday at Whittlebury Hall, Northamptonshire.
Unveiled in the Chancellor’s post-election Budget in July, the first IPT rise came into force last November and represented an increase of 58 per cent, from 6 per cent to 9.5 per cent. A second hike of 0.5 per cent was declared in George Osborne’s March Budget statement.
Speaking at the AGM, Sculllion said: “Sue Weir and the Medicash team have worked hard to spearhead a campaign calling for health insurance to be exempt from IPT.
“From discussions with our insurer and provider members we are aware that several of them have met with HM Treasury to lobby for a review of IPT. We believe the success of this lobbying will be determined by consolidated and continued pressure on Government to reconsider their position on insurance premium taxation attracted to health insurance products.
“AMII is perfectly placed to take the lead and co-ordinate those efforts as a single, representational voice on behalf of the industry.
“The Chancellor’s decision to include health insurance under a general insurance umbrella is illogical. Health insurance is an elective insurance – people choose to protect their health. Increasing IPT will only discourage people from health insurance options, and deter businesses from providing health benefits for their staff.
“As people are deterred from health insurance options they are driven to an over burdened and over stretched National Health Service. This does not make sense for the long term wellbeing of the nation.
“This is a real opportunity for us to work together to make a difference, we need a concerted effort to continue this conversation with the Chancellor. AMII will be making representations to Government to express our views.”