The majority of Laya Healthcare policies are to increase by an average of 4% on 1 September. 

The company blamed the rise on a significant increase in the volume and cost of claims over the past year. 

Laya had said in May that it had no plans to increase premiums across its schemes. 

However, a spokeswoman for the company said that meant there would be no blanket increase and today's rise relates to just 55% of their policies. The remaining 45% have not been impacted. 

Health Insurance expert, Dermot Goode, said the rise followed increases by Aviva and GloHealth earlier this year.

Customers will be watching now to see if the largest health insurance provider in the market, VHI, who said they had no plans for price increases, will follow suit. 

In a statement Dónal Clancy, Managing Director at Laya Healthcare said: "We are acutely conscious of the impact this adjustment will have on some of our members, and we have tried to minimise the impact across our schemes.

"This price review has been driven largely by the significant increase we have experienced in the number and costs of medical claims in the past year," he said.

"We have seen an 18% increase in the volume of claims, while the cost of claims has climbed by 15% versus the same period in 2014," he added.