Irish Life Health is increasing its premiums by an average of 4.5 per cent from the 1st of January.

The company says it is due to very substantial price inflation in hospital procedure prices.

This announcement comes as another cost of living blow to consumers.

The health insurer is blaming what it calls very substantial inflation in hospital procedure prices for the move.

In a statement it says like many parts of the economy, hospitals have experienced significant increases in costs, which in turn has increased the cost of providing care to patients.

Key contributory factors are the rise in energy and other supply costs, and the recent public-sector pay deal as it applies to healthcare staff.

Managing Director Ger Davis says they recognise the changes will be difficult for customers who are already experiencing price increases in many areas and insists they are passing on the lowest possible increase they can.

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