AS AN AFFINITY CLIENT, WHICH HOSPITALS CAN I GO TO?

Health Medical Insurance

As an Affinity Health Medical Insurance client, or on the Hospital Plan, you will have access to a preselected list of private hospitals in your area.

The great thing about an Affinity Health Hospital Plan is that you get a much wider choice of hospitals and doctors than if you were a public patient.

With an extensive list of the best hospitals in the country, you can make an informed decision about which facility will be responsible for your care, while being fully covered financially in any event.

It may seem like a difficult task to find an Affinity-approved hospital near you, but it doesn’t have to be!

Affinity had made finding a hospital in your area simple and fast.

All you need to do is to find a preferred hospital closest to you, please contact our Customer Care line on 0861 11 00 33 and select option 4. We are continually adding new hospitals to our preferred list.

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IS A HOSPITAL PLAN ENOUGH?

HOSPITAL PLAN

Deciding on the right medical aid, medical insurance or a hospital plan is no small task. There are many aspects to consider when you decide which type of cover is best for your family. As daunting as the task may seem, it is very necessary.

A large factor to consider is affordability. Medical aid is generally more expensive than medical insurance. Even more affordable is to have only a hospital plan, but is it good enough?

What is hospital cover?

Hospital cover is a medical scheme that only covers you for hospital-related incidents. Hospital visits and stays can really break the bank, leaving you in a tight spot when you have to choose between getting the assistance you need and covering other expenses.

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CAN YOU USE YOUR HEALTH INSURANCE IN EMERGENCIES?

HEALTH INSURANCE IN EMERGENCIES

Medical emergencies can happen at any time. Without insurance cover, you may find yourself in need of medical attention that will leave you out of pocket.

However, even if you do have medical insurance, certain insurers may not cover your emergency bills, depending on the contract you have with them.

So, what constitutes an emergency?

There are no actual ‘definitions or parameters’ to what constitutes a medical emergency, as this is usually determined on the spot by medical professionals such as the ambulance personnel or the medical doctor who responds to the event.

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Are there any hospital plans for the elderly?

Are there any hospital plans for the elderly

Many young to middle aged people find it quite simple to join affordable hospital plans. The elderly, however, have a bit more of a challenge.

Getting older, for many people, means a decline in general health and well-being, as our bodies change over the decades. Certain medical conditions become more prevalent with older folk. Sometimes, as we age, we need medical assistance more often, even for ailments like the common flu.

According to Web MD, when you’re over 65, your immune system isn’t as strong as it used to be. Seniors make up the bulk of the people who die or are hospitalized for flu-related problems.

Read More: Are there any hospital plans for the elderly?

Let’s Talk About Banting

By now, you would not just have heard of this magical diet – you would have seen the miraculous results some people are boasting. Yes, people have managed to lose a lot of weight quickly by following the Banting diet, but that doesn’t mean that it’s healthy or recommended for everyone.

It all started in 1862, when William Banting, an obese undertaker in Britain, sought advice from his doctor. His doctor recommended a drastic change to his diet, eliminating most carbs in favour of high fat options with moderate protein. Mr. Banting lost a remarkable amount of weight and thus, The Banting Diet was born.

A few hundred years later, South African Professor, Tim Noakes, came across research which indicated that current international food guidelines were detrimental to overall health. He then conducted his own research and came to the conclusion that the healthiest possible diet for many human bodies consisted of a high percentage of fat and a low percentage of carbohydrates. He went on to challenge international eating guidelines and started The Noakes Foundation to enforce his message, ultimately reversing the global trends related to food and challenging current health and nutrition misconceptions. The first step in his process was to write The Real Meal revolution – the concise Banting guide which has taken the world by storm.

The book teaches you exactly what to eat in order to achieve “banting” status, and contains many delicious high fat, low carb Banting recipes designed to maximise weight loss and promote overall health while you’re Banting.

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Are Your Kids Eating The Right Snacks?

Kids are snacking more than ever. Years ago kids between the ages of 2 and 6 ate on average one snack a day between meals, but today, kids typically eat almost three. Some kids eat even more than that.

Snacks are an important part of their diet because kids have a smaller stomach and high energy needs. However, when kids are allowed to eat all day, it robs them of the chance to develop an appetite. If kids aren’t coming to the table at dinner time least a little hungry, they’re not as willing to try new foods.

Toddlers and preschoolers can go two to three hours between meals and snacks, older kids three to four. Parents should avoid on-the-go snacks- in the car and the pram, in the shopping cart, or as you’re going out the door as much as possible. This could make it harder for kids to eat the right amount because they’re distracted. Mindless eaters don’t have the chance to savour food or pay attention to their body’s hunger or fullness signals, which often end up over-eating or under-eating.

The right kinds of snacks are important as it’s a big part of their diet, you should also feel good about the snacks you give your child. Paediatrician, Dr Shire Singh, says while healthy snacks are excellent for kids, an occasional sweet treat now and then could teach them how to deal with moderation from a young age. “They know they’ve had it before and will have it again” when it comes to sweet things, where as children who are deprived of any sweet things, will sneakily try to have these.

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Are You Just Really Tired Or Is It A Sign Of A Larger Issue

ARE YOU JUST REALLY TIREDWhile being tired 24/7 is a bitter part of adulthood, at what point does it indicate a more serious issue? There are many factors that affect your sleeping habits, but sometimes you’re more than fatigued.

You should be aiming to get in the around seven to nine hours of sleep a night to be fully rested. Most people struggle to make the minimum hours. Your pre-bedtime habits can affect how you sleep; these denominators could make the eight hours a night you sleep, feel like four. However, it’s not normal to feel persistently fatigued for more than a week, according to Jenepher Piper, M.S.N., a certified registered nurse practitioner tells SELF.

Eating before bed, exercising right before bed, your phone and mattress can all factor into the fatigue you feel the next day. On the other end of the scale, going to bed hungry and not exercising enough can also impact your sleep negatively.

There are many ways in which you could be sabotaging your sleep with, leaving you tired the next day.

In some cases you need to flag your fatigue to your doctor, but when? And what could your fatigue be a sign of?

“Sleepiness is simply the drive to sleep. Falling asleep during concerts, sales meetings, or intercourse are sure signs of excessive sleepiness,” board-certified sleep medicine doctor and neurologist W. Christopher Winter, M.D, of Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine, says.

And, of course, you could also feel wiped even though you know you got enough sleep. This is when you should consider you may just be more than tired.

Your excessive fatigue could be caused by something as minor as PMS, in female’s cases, or getting over a virus. Your immune system works hard to fend off an infection and can leave you feeling fatigued after being sick. Another cause of fatigue could be allergies. Feeling winded, coughing, and a runny nose are all common signs of allergies, but your immune system is kicked into high gear fighting off allergens and can leave you feeling worn out.

Clinical psychologist Alicia H. Clark, Psy.D, confirms your mental health can take a toll on your energy too. Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness associated with depression can drain you. Clarks added: “If you aren’t sleeping well then you may be more tired, and in turn have more trouble sleeping,”

“Insomnia and mental health challenges are closely related and can exacerbate each other.”

According to Clark “anxiety in particular can be draining” and leave you just as fatigued. If you suspect you’re suffering from these symptoms, you should reach out to your mental health care professional.

If you suffer from diarrhoea, gas, and vomiting once you ingest gluten, or if you don’t feel well after having wheat, barley, or rye products, you talk to your doctor about getting tested for celiac disease. Feeling weak or fatigued, even without other symptoms, could also be a sign of celiac disease, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Extreme fatigue could also indicate Chronic fatigue syndrome – a disorder that causes extreme and unexplained fatigue. It gets worse with physical activity but doesn’t get better once you rest. Another condition that would leave you feeling fatigued, is anemia. Other symptoms can include pale or yellowish skin, shortness of breath, and cold hands and feet. Anemia can be determined by your doctor and resolved by taking an iron supplement.

Fatigue can also be a sign of a Thyroid problem. Your thyroid helps impact several important functions of your body and an under-active thyroid, known as hypothyroidism, can slow down your bodily functions and leave you feeling tired.

Hyperthyroidism on the other hand, a thyroid condition when your thyroid is overactive, speeds everything up and can cause insomnia and an inner restlessness.

Aging can affect the quality of your sleep, as you get older you may wake up more often and have a less consistent sleep pattern. If your fatigue is coupled with other symptoms or disrupts your daily life, it’s best to speak to your GP.

Affinity Health offers a range of competitively priced health insurance products that are designed to protect you and your family against unforeseen medical expenses… Affinity Health also offers hospital cover for individuals and families in the event of a medical emergency or severe illness.

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Fighting The Flu Naturally

The air is cold, the wind is blowing and the rain is pouring, that’s right, its flu-season.

Winter rolls around every year bringing the dreaded cold into our homes. People often turn to prescription treatments, but is it really more effective than home flu remedies?

Natural remedies may not be a cure-all, Cape Kingdom Nutraceuticals‘ researcher, professor Patrick Bouic, says “going natural is always first prize”.

“What’s great is that the natural options are endless and they can also be used long-term with no side effects.”

You can nip your flu in the bud naturally, getting yourself feeling better faster, while boosting your immune system. As the saying goes, Prevention is better than cure. When you’re giving the body what it needs and keeping a constant supply of nutrients, it will ensure the body can resist any virus it comes across. However, what can you do once you’ve already caught the virus?

The number one way to fight common colds and flu’s is to boost your immune system. People with a weak immune system or nutrient deficiencies may be more prone to catching the flu or a cold. Stress, lack of sleep and exposure to toxins can worsen flu symptoms.

Restis very important, you need to remove other obstacles in front of your immune system and let your body focus on fighting the flu only. Rest and sleep as much as you can.

Drink plenty of fluids,such as water, at the first sign of the flu and not just a glass or two, but a lot of water. Hot fluids, such as hot water with lemon and honey, herbal teas and lots of homemade chicken soup or bone broth, will help the body’s immune system. To stop the rise of the virus sip your hot fluids until you can’t even look at it anymore. Remove carbs and sugars from your diet until your symptoms subside. Sugars are toxic.

Hot liquids also “relieve nasal congestion and soothe the uncomfortably inflamed membranes that line your nose and throat,” according to Vicks’ site.

Detox baths are a quick way to relax, clean your system of toxins and absorb minerals that will strengthen your immune system. Add Epsom Salts or magnesium flakes and 2 tablespoons of baking soda (which is optional. It helps promote elimination of toxins and clean unfiltered water) to a hot bath and enjoy. This remedy is also safe for kids, visit 75 Amazing Healthy Reasons Why Your Children Need Detox Baths to read more on this.

Vitamin C is an excellent flu-fighter. You can find vitamin c in citrus fruits and juices, such as oranges and grapefruit; and in fruits such as Kiwi, Mango, Papaya, Watermelon, Pineapples, Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and cranberries.

Ginger is anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, as well as an antioxidant. You can use ginger to reduce your pain and fever and to sooth your stomach, nasal passages and throat. Homemade ginger ale from real ginger is the way to go when using ginger to fight the flu.

Raw honeycan also be used to fight colds and flu viruses. Raw honey is a natural immune system booster, studies show that children who get a dose of raw honey cough less and sleep better than children treated with cough and cold medicines.

A dose of garlica natural antifungal and antibacterial, can help against almost any illness. However, it loses effectiveness when cooked, when you’re sick its best to be taken raw.

You can also make a herbal steam treatment with kitchen herbs. Just boil 1-2 cups of water in a large pot. Remove from heat; add 2 teaspoons each of thyme, some rosemary, and oregano.

Then cover for 5 minutes with a lid, and remove lid and put face directly over pot with towel covering your head to hold in the heat and breathe in the steam as long as you can. This remedy will help loosen congestion and kill viruses and bacteria in the lungs or sinuses. A 1/2 cup vinegar in the steam will help fight the illness, although it won’t smell good.

At the first sign of illness, remove foods that suppress immune function. These foods slow your body’s healing ability. You should completely remove all white foods from the diet. This includes grains, sugars, milk, cheese, dairy, sweeteners and fizzy drinks.

The secret to kicking the flu to the curb is to catch it in the beginning; attack it with these natural weapons and rest until you are symptom free.

A flu vaccine is also advised.

Most medical insurance plans like Affinity Health and Clientele Life have a selection of doctors for when you need a little extra help to kick the nasty flu germs out the window.

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How Does One Really Catch Pneumonia?

Pneumonia Effect

 

For years, people have been warned that if they have the flu, they should watch out for the dreaded pneumonia.

Moms warn their teenage kids about walking around with wet hair, even doctors warn patients to stay warm to avoid the dreaded condition…

Pneumonia can occur in anyone, even young and healthy people, however, it is most dangerous for older adults, infants, people with other diseases, and those with impaired immune systems.

But do we actually know what pneumonia really is?

Pneumonia is lung inflammation caused by bacterial or viral infection, in which the air sacs fill with pus and may become solid. Inflammation may affect both lungs (double pneumonia) or only one (single pneumonia).

The lungs become inflamed, and the tiny air sacs, or alveoli, inside the lungs fill up with fluid.

Medical News Today states that it is the leading cause of death due to infection in children younger than 5 years of age worldwide.

The first symptoms of pneumonia usually resemble those of a cold or flu. The person then develops a high fever, chills, and cough with sputum.

Common symptoms include:

  • Cough
  • rusty or green phlegm, or sputum, coughed up from lungs
  • fever
  • fast breathing and shortness of breath
  • shaking chills
  • chest pain that usually worsens when taking a deep breath, known as pleuritic pain
  • fast heartbeat
  • fatigue and weakness
  • nausea and vomiting

There are also many other symptoms.

It also causes confusion or delirium, especially in older adults

Some people experience a dusky or purplish skin color, or cyanosis, from poorly oxygenated blood.

Symptoms can vary depending on other underlying conditions and the type of pneumonia.

How is it treated?

Bacterial Pneumonia is treated with antibiotics. Treatment can be quite costly, so it is always best to be armed with an affordable health insurance provider like Affinity Health.

Also, it is a smart decision to shop around for the cheapest medical aid rates on the market, to be safe if you’re ever in the unfortunate circumstance of catching a dreaded illness.

Web MD says that if you have viral pneumonia, antibiotics won’t be enough. You’ll need to rest, drink a lot of fluids, and take medicines for your fever.

You may need to go to a hospital if your symptoms are severe or if you have other conditions that make you more likely to have complications. A hospital plan will be best to cover any bills you accumulate during your stay.

With any kind of pneumonia, you’re going to need lots of rest. You might need a week off your usual routines, but you might still feel tired for a month.

When are you most likely to catch it?

Smokers are at a higher risk of catching pneumonia

Also, when your immune system is compromised, for example if you have the flu, you are susceptible to catching it.

The majority of the germs that cause pneumonia are spread from person to person through droplets, from coughing or sneezing.

People who are frequently in close contact with others, such as college students and military personnel, are also more susceptible to the disease, Everyday Health reports.

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