Private health insurance providers have been asked by the federal government to revise planned premium rises.
Speaking to The Age yesterday (February 6), health minister Tanya Plibersek stated that she had contacted more than 20 insurers ''whose proposed increases are what I considered to be contrary to the public interest and have made it clear to them that their premium increases should be lower''.
"Let me be very clear, my priority is to ensure that the increase is kept to a minimum while ensuring that we have a strong industry and the latest reports show that we have a strong industry," the health minister added.
Ms Plibersek's request to the industry comes as parliament prepares for its first sitting of 2012 today (February 7).
Among the top items to be debated is the Gillard government's plan to means test the private health insurance rebate.
Following the release of the annual report from the Private Health Insurance Administration Council last month, the health minister suggested that the private health insurance industry is robust enough to not be affected by the proposed Bill.