Tamworth's Bupa health insurance shopfront is set to close within a week.
A Bupa spokesperson, who confirmed the service would be cut from October 22, said both their employees in the city would be redeployed within the company
"After a review and seeing customer behaviours change in recent time with the advent of online service, we have made the decision to close our Tamworth health insurance store on October 22," the spokesperson said.
The Leader was alerted to the decision by an irate customer of over 50 years.
She asked to remain anonymous, but said she would consider changing insurers if she could get the same deal, as a result of the decision.
"Let me tell you, if you try to get Bupa on the phone ... it's equal to trying to deal with Telstra or trying to deal with your electricity company, you get put from pillar to post," she said.
"I will miss Bupa big time and a lot of people my age will, because I see them down there."
Tamworth Business Chamber President Stephanie Cameron compared the loss of the health insurer to a bank branch closure.
"It's one step closer to putting access to private health insurance for regional people at risk. What if other private health insurers follow suit?" she said.
"Those people who are used to be able to go into a shop front and transact business won't be able to do that. Not everyone has got access to doing things online or over the phone."
The Bupa spokesperson said the company "will still be here for customers".
"In addition to our online and phone support teams, we will also continue our physical presence in the community through a dedicated regional pop-up kiosk approach that will cover Tamworth, Armidale and Port Macquarie," they said.
"We are pleased that our two team members who work at Bupa Tamworth will take up new customer facing roles and remain part of Bupa."
Bupa is an international health insurer with over 31 million customers headquartered in London. It also runs aged care homes.
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