Varadkar: “People should be spending money on health cover instead of cigarettes” – TheLiberal.ie – Our News, Your Views

Varadkar: “People should be spending money on health cover instead of cigarettes”




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The Minister for Health Leo Varadkar has suggested that more people should be spending their money on health cover instead of cigarettes.

Mr Varadkar claims that certain people are shelling out up to €10 a day on cigarettes which are damaging to their health but are complaining about the cost of private health cover. The health Minister said people who smoke can easily afford to pay for Health Insurance as it is considerably cheaper than keeping up the habbit. Mr Varadkar said: “They shell out over €3,600 a year on cigarettes but would get a basic health insurance policy for around €400”, The Health Minister made his remarks as he was encouraging people who are over 35 to join up for the first time before May 1st in order to avoid loadings.

Meanwhile Mr Varadkar has defended the new rules, which will impose loadings on older groups who join up after May 1st.
Although the Health Minister accepted there are certain people who cannot afford to take out private cover. He said: “There are people who can afford health insurance who don’t take it out. Anyone who can afford to smoke 20 cigarettes a day can afford health insurance.” 

Mr Varadkar claims the new rules are necessary to ensure health insurance, which is currently based on a community rating system, remains affordable.

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