Australians take car insurance over health cover

Peter Terlato 11 April 2017

Car insurance

And one in seven Aussies don't have any insurance at all.

New research reveals that Australians are more concerned with insuring their vehicles than protecting their personal health, well-being and finances.

Pureprofile surveyed 1,000 people, analysing their attitudes towards insurance coverage. The study found 72% of Aussies have comprehensive car insurance and 62% have home and contents insurance.

Just 55% have private health insurance, 22% have life insurance and only 12% have income protection.

One third have low or no insurance and one in seven adults (14%) don't have any insurance at all.

Australia's private health insurance market is dominated by two major brands, Bupa (26%) and Medibank Private (24%). Other companies including HCF (16%) and nib (13%) have smaller member numbers.

Despite half of all respondents considering private health insurance to be "very important" or "essential", a quarter of those who actually have a health insurance policy rated it as "only somewhat important".

Renewal notifications have encouraged many Australians (46%) to switch insurers and comparison websites were used by more than half (54%) of those seeking new policies. One in six Aussies (16%) have switched private health insurance providers at least once in the last three years.

Half of Australians can recall health provider advertising, with cut-through pitches most effective on women (54%) and 18-34 year olds (55%). Television remains the most powerful advertising medium, garnering the overwhelming majority (90%) of total advertising recall.

Costs (71%) and benefits (42%) are key reasons behind people's decisions not to take out health cover.

The Australian Medical Association's (AMA) latest report card highlights the need for consumers to do their homework before taking out a health insurance policy, exposing funds with gaps in coverage.

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