Stop removal of Exercise Based Natural Therapies from Health Insurance Extras

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Private Health Insurance reforms come into effect from April 1 2019. This means many natural therapies have been removed from the definition of general treatment under section 121-10 of the Private Health Insurance Act 2007. Which means that benefits for these therapies cannot be offered in Private Health Insurance policies if they are to qualify for the Government Rebate. 

The excluded therapies are based on an NHMRC review. which concluded that these therapies have no clear scientific evidence of efficacy.

The Government thinks this exclusion will reduce premiums and therefore cost of the rebates. My Insurance Provider has advised that the therapies will no longer be covered but there is no change to premiums indicated yet. 

If Pilates, yoga, and other exercise based therapies have no efficacy why are they prescribed by physiotherapists?

i use these therapies to manage the ongoing effects of a stroke. It doesn't cure anything. But it does make my daily life more comfortable. Scientific Research based evidence for my particular use is limited but lack of evidence due to lack of research is no reason to exclude the exercise based therapies from cover. 

Access to one on one help to exercise is vital for me and others with physical restrictions. Without Health Insurance benefits I can not afford to continue with my current treatments.

Stroke and other forms of Acquired Brain Injury affect tens of thousands of Australians on an ongoing basis. (2003 data shows 1 in 45 Australians (432700 people) had ABI with activity limitations.  Almost 3/4 of these people were aged less than 65).

I call on the Government to remove Pilates, yoga, Feldenkrais, and Tai Chi from the list of excluded Natural Therapies.