Number of people with health plans grew 5% in the pandemic

There are 49.4 million Brazilians insured, the highest level since 2015; sector expectation is to exceed 50 million still in 2022

The pandemic made the number of people with health plans in Brazil grow by 5%. The sector had been in decline since 2015, but concern over Covid-19 has increased demand. And the expectation is that the number of policyholders will continue to rise until the end of the year, despite high inflation and the 2-digit readjustment in contracts with operators.

There are 49.4 million Brazilians with a health plan, according to the latest available data, referring to April 2022. The number was released this week by the ANS (National Supplementary Health Agency), the body responsible for inspecting and regulating health plans. health.

The number of insured was 47 million 2 years ago. There were 2.4 million new hires compared to February 2020, a month before the World Health Organization declared a pandemic.

In April 2022, the country reached the highest level of insured persons since September 2015 – there were 49.7 million beneficiaries in that month. The peak of health plans was in December 2014, according to the ANS historical series, which begins in 2011.

In 2014, there were 50.5 million people with private plans. The sector’s expectation is to surpass this record this year. Abramge (Brazilian Association of Health Plans) calculates that at the end of the year the total number of beneficiaries will be 50.6 million. If the scenario materializes, there will be an increase of 3.3% compared to 2021. Here is the full text of the entity’s note (12 KB).

“We came from a downward trend in beneficiaries before the pandemic. We were just under 47 million. In the initial 2 years of the pandemic, there was a reversal of this phenomenon with the increase in the number of beneficiaries”, said Abramge’s president, Renato Casarotti, to the Power 360 in April.

The rise in health plans during the pandemic was driven by business contracts. Most beneficiaries focus on these agreements. There are 34 million compared to 9 million people in individual plans. The number of policyholders in individual contracts remained stable in relation to the beginning of the pandemic.

In May, ANS authorized the largest readjustment in individual and family health plans in the historical series, which begins in 2000. Operators will be able to increase the price of contracts by up to 15.5% for the period from May 2022 to April 2023.

health plan readjustments

The calculation for the readjustment has 80% of the weight for assistance expenses and 20% for the IPCA (General Consumer Price Index) in the period.

In 2021, the adjustment was negative by 8.1% due to the reduction in healthcare expenses in 2020. In the 1st year of the pandemic, elective procedures were suspended, which led to a reduction in medical-care expenses.

The readjustment of individual and family plans are defined by the ANS, unlike membership and business plans. In these plans, the readjustment is defined according to the operator. Data from the agency, until February 2022, show that the average readjustment of collective plans was 8.43%.

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