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Some of the health funds we compare

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How it works

1

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Answer some simple questions about yourself and what kind of cover you need. It takes less than a minute.

2

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Compare relevant policies from our database based on the factors you care about most, including price.

3

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What is private health insurance?

Private health insurance helps with the cost of healthcare in a private hospital. It lets you avoid public waiting lists, choose your own doctor and can provide you with your own private room. Not all policies are created equal, so it's important to compare health insurance and find the best health cover for you. There are two main types of cover: hospital and extras.

How much does private health insurance cost?

The cost of private health insurance varies, but we crunched the numbers from 30+ Australian funds to see what you'll have to pay for hospital and extras cover per month, depending on the level of cover you choose.

TierAverageTreatments included
Basic$86
Bronze$101
  • 18 categories including joint reconstructions and ENT
Silver$153
  • 26 categories including dental and podiatric surgeries
Gold$242
  • 38 categories including joint replacements and pregnancy
Extras coverAverageIncluded benefits
Core$32
  • At least General Dental and Ambulance Cover
Medium$67
  • At least Major Dental, Optical and Physio
Comprehensive$116
  • Treatments like Orthodontics and Hearing aids

Average prices are updated monthly, in line with Finder's database of health insurance policies. Prices are based on a single individual with less than $93,000 income and living in Sydney with a $750 excess.

What does private health insurance cover that Medicare doesn't?

Private health insurance gives you access to the same hospital services covered by Medicare – but you get access to your own doctor, private room and waiting times are significantly shorter.

Extras insurance cover does cover healthcare costs that aren't typically covered by the public healthcare system, such as dental, physiotherapy and optical.

If you go to a private hospital as a private patient, Medicare will pay 75% of the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) fee. Your health insurance covers the other 25%, plus accommodation costs and theatre fees. Sometimes there's a gap between the MBS fee and the total cost of your procedure. You may need to pay this unless your health insurance has no gap cover.

Public vs private health insurance comparison

Not sure if private health insurance is worth it? Here are some key differences between the public and private healthcare systems in Australia:

Public system Private health insurance
DoctorA public hospital will allocate a doctor for you. You don't get to choose.You can choose which doctor you see.
Private roomYou'll likely end up in a shared room in a public hospital.Insurance gives you access to a private room if there's one available.
Waiting listsWaiting lists for elective treatments can range from a few weeks to a few years.Private insurance usually involves a shorter wait. For some procedures, you may even be able to pick your date.
Treatment typesMedicare doesn't cover most dental, hearing aids or other out-of-hospital treatments.Extras can give you cashback on out-of-hospital services such as optical, dental, psychology and hearing aids.
Ambulance costsIn most cases, Medicare won't pay for your ambulance except in Queensland and Tasmania.Most health funds include cover for an emergency ambulance, even on Basic policies.

4 benefits of health insurance

Hospital
Choose your hospital

Enjoy a private room during your stay. You can even choose your preferred doctor.
Waiting list
Skip waiting lists

Public lists can stretch months or years. Go private and be seen in days or weeks.
Percentage
Save on tax

If you earn over $93k, private hospital insurance can shave money off your tax bill. Easy.
Heart
Peace of mind

Rest easy knowing you're top of the list if things go wrong. You'll be back to normal in no time.

Learn more about private health insurance

Hospital Cover

Hospital cover helps pay for a range of hospital treatments in a private hospital. This can include joint reconstructions, hernia operations and childbirth.

Extras Cover

Extras cover helps towards out-of-hospital healthcare. This includes trips to the dentist, eye care by an optomotrists, physiotherapists and natural therapies.

Do you need health insurance?

Take our 30 second quiz to see if you need private health insurance at all. It's an important product, but not everybody needs it.

Health insurance rebate

The private health insurance rebate makes health insurance cheaper for most people. Your exact rebate is determined by your age and income.

Private health and tax

Whether you're a high earner or turning 30, there are a few things you need to know about private health insurance at tax time.

How much is health insurance?

The price of health insurance can vary a lot based on your age, income and your lifestyle.

Switching health funds

Switching health funds is quick and easy. You can transfer your waiting periods, while potentially saving money with new sign-up deals.

Annual Limits

Extras benefit limits place a cap on the amount you can claim. They typically reset every 12 months. A higher limit may mean a more expensive policy, but not always.

Waiting Periods

Waiting periods apply to both extras and hospital policies - you'll need to serve these before claiming a benefit. Some extras policies let you skip some waiting periods.

Alex Holderness

Getting health insurance had been on my to-do list for the longest time, but I found it very confusing. I realised it was actually split into two parts - hospital cover (anything in the hospital and the more expensive part) and extras cover (for the dentist and those new specs). I've actually switched policies 3 times in the last 4 years to take advantage of the sign up offers funds give when you join. I've saved around $800 so far.
— Alex Holderness, head of publishing

Compare hospital cover tiers

Gold Medal
Gold

Gold cover includes all hospital treatment categories, including joint replacements, pregnancy and insulin pumps.
Silver Medal
Silver

Silver cover includes at least 26 hospital treatments, including lung and chest, dental and podiatric surgery.
Bronze Medal
Bronze

Bronze cover includes at least 18 hospital treatments, including joint reconstructions, gynaecology, and ENT.
Basic Hospital
Basic

Basic cover often has only limited inclusions, but it can help avoid the Medicare Levy Surcharge and Lifetime Health Cover loading.

Why you can trust Finder's health insurance experts

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expert adviceYou save time. We spend 100s of hours researching health insurance so you can sort the gold from the junk faster.
independentYou can trust us. We say it like it is. We aren't owned by an insurer and our opinions are our own.

Frequently asked questions about health insurance

Written by

Tim Bennett

Tim Bennett is a Finder insurance expert. For over 10 years he's reported on news, politics, finance and other topics as a journalist and radio presenter. Tim's roles have included radio news reader and breakfast at the ABC, news producer for SBS and producer for Fairfax Media. Tim regularly appears as a health insurance expert on programs like Sunrise and SBS news, as well as in the Australian, The Daily Telegraph, The Courier Mail and more. See full profile

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51 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    HtaMay 21, 2024

    Hi, could I please ask which insurance covers HPV treatments, including wart treatment, pap smear and other HPV related treatments if needed?

      AvatarFinder
      SarahMay 24, 2024Finder

      Hi Hta,

      All of these treatments would be managed through a GP, which is linked to Medicare. You would need to go to your GP or a sexual health clinic for treatment, and you would be eligible for Medicare rebates if you’re entitled to Medicare Benefits.

      Health insurance could provide some cover if you ever need day surgery related to HPV, but you would still likely be out of pocket (hospital excess, gap payments and doctor’s fees) even with insurance. So if that was your primary reason for taking out health insurance, the financial benefit might not be enough incentive, considering the high cost of premiums.

      Of course this is a personal decision, and you have to consider things like your income and the medicare surcharge (more info here if you’re not aware).

    AvatarFinder
    TimMarch 6, 2024Finder

    Hi Jason, thanks for your question.

    Health insurance premiums will be going up by 3.03% on average in 2024. The government has to approve these increases each year – this year took a little longer for that to happen. The price rise should happen on April 1 2024.

    Be sure to check the news article I linked – it’s got the breakdown of how much each health fund is increasing premiums. 3.03% is just an average across all funds – your fund will probably be slight more or less than that.

    Have a good one!
    Tim

    Default Gravatar
    JohnSeptember 4, 2021

    Hi,

    Are there any such plans that cover foreign hospital treatments for people seeking treatment for cancer? I have pre-existing medical conditions and looking for health cover for overseas treatment. Please advice.

      AvatarFinder
      JamesSeptember 12, 2021Finder

      Hi John,

      Unfortunately, most domestic health insurance policies don’t offer cover for treatment needed outside of Australia. However, travel insurance that specifically covers overseas medical expenses may help.

      Make sure you read each policy’s Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) with care so that you know what cover is available.

      Also, check to see if there are any reciprocal healthcare agreements in place between Australia and each country you’re intending to visit.

      Regards,
      James

      AvatarFinder
      JamesSeptember 10, 2021Finder

      Hi John,

      Unfortunately, most domestic health insurance policies don’t offer cover for treatment needed outside of Australia. However, travel insurance (https://www.finder.com.au/travel-insurance) that specifically covers overseas medical expenses may help. Make sure you read each policy’s Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) with care, so that you know what cover is available.

      Also, check to see if there are any reciprocal healthcare agreements in place between Australia and each country you’re intending to visit.

      Regards,
      James

    Default Gravatar
    RobertAugust 28, 2021

    I would like a real time answer to my request for cover .

      AvatarFinder
      JamesAugust 30, 2021Finder

      Hi Robert,

      Can which cover you are referring to, please? I’ll wait for your response. If possible, please return to our website and click on the chat button found on the lower right corner of our to chat with us in real-time.

      Moreover, please feel free as well to get in touch with the specific insurer you have chosen. They should be able to provide you with more details of the cover you’re interested in.

      Regards,
      James

    Default Gravatar
    MaureenNovember 7, 2019

    What is the best health insurance that pays well for natural therapies that is needed weekly

      Default Gravatar
      NikkiNovember 8, 2019

      Hi Maureen,

      Thanks for your comment and I hope you are well!

      You can compare and choose health insurance for natural therapies. You can use our comparison table that shows the amount of cover offered by each for natural therapy service. While choosing, don’t forget to read each insurer’s limit, type of policy, price and etc. You can press the ‘Go to site’ button which brings you to the provider’s official page to get a quote and start your application. If you need more options, you may utilize the online form that can be found further down the page. An insurer will contact you upon receipt of your inquiry. At this point, you can also let them know that you would need weekly therapy.

      As a friendly reminder, carefully review the Product Disclosure Statement of the product before applying. You may also contact the insurance provider should you have any questions about their policy.

      Hope this helps and feel free to reach out to us again for further assistance.

      With care,
      Nikki

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