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Health Insurance Finder™ is a 100% free, Australian-owned comparison service designed to help you find suitable cover for your needs.
Why compare private health insurance?
Health insurance can be confusing. Whether you’re thinking about starting a family, crossing tax thresholds or just wanting the best level of healthcare possible, we're here to help.
At finder.com.au, we aim to clear up the confusion. Get a quote and compare health insurance from 30+ companies in Australia.
What is private health insurance?
Health insurance helps you cover the cost of hospital treatments as well as some out-of-hospital services. These two services are broken into two groups: hospital treatments and general treatments (also known as ancillary services or extras).
While we're lucky as Australians to have access to hospital treatment through our public healthcare system Medicare, private health insurance provides you with more options.
|Medicare||Private health insurance|
|Public hospital services|
|Private room or hospital|
|Everyday health (dentist, physio, etc)|
Find health cover that suits your life
Choose your own health care
Have peace of mind, whether you want choice over your hospital or your surgeon, or you just want to feel safe in the knowledge that you’ve got protection.
Avoid tax penalties
Just want a basic policy that means you don’t get penalised? We got you. Health insurance means you can avoid fearing that claim form come June 30.
Don't sit around waiting
Don’t want to sit on a public waiting list for surgery? Private health insurance can help. You’ll be able to receive treatment quicker, in a private room and from a doctor that you choose.
Get a little extra back for everyday needs
If you get regular massages, physio treatments or you just like keeping your teeth in great condition, these out-of-hospital treatments are only covered by private health insurance.
You have 5 options
When you're looking for private health insurance, it's up to you to decide whether you want hospital or extras or a package with both. You also have the option of taking out a standalone ambulance cover, but ambulance fees are generally included in most extras and hospital policies.
Option 1: Hospital cover
A hospital policy covers you for hospital procedures and accommodation, you can also choose your doctor. Hospital cover is also what you need to avoid the Medicare Levy Surcharge (MLS).
Option 2: Extras cover
Extras cover allows you to claim for out-of-hospital health services such as dental and physio. Extras pay either a set refund or a percentage refund.
Option 3: Hospital and extras combined
A combined policy includes cover for both in and out of hospital services. They are often labelled as packages such as young couples - but you can also mix and match your own.
Option 4: Overseas Visitor Health Cover (OVHC)
If you're looking to visit, work or study in Australia, you may need OVHC. Whether you're looking to tick you visa box or searching for a more comprehensive policy - there are several options available.
Option 5: No health insurance
You can take this 1-minute quiz to help you figure out whether you would benefit from hospital cover, extras cover, both or neither.
Knee or ankle pain?
Your hospital policy can help cover the cost of having surgery and your extras policy will provide you with cover for the rehab.
Been putting off seeing the dentist?
Wait no more. Whether you’re just looking for a clean and a polish or you're struggling to eat that ice cream, extras has you covered.
Thinking about having a child?
While having a baby in a public hospital might be cheaper, having private health insurance allows you to choose your own doctor and be treated in a private room.
Are you nearing 31?
If you don’t have cover by 1 July following your 31st birthday, you’ll have to pay an additional 2% for every year that you don’t have cover.
Private health insurance is community rated meaning that no matter how old you are or whether you have any pre-existing conditions, everyone pays the same amount for the same cover.
The cost of health insurance comes down to the choices you make. A basic hospital policy can start from $16 a week and an extras policy from just $3 a week with April 2018 pricing.
You can also easily compare hundreds of policies to find either a cheap or comprehensive policy that works for your budget.
There are ways that you can save a few dollars:
- Prepay for your policy before 1 April each year. Every year on 1 April, health insurance premiums go up. If you prepay 12 months' worth of premiums before 1 April, you can postpone the rate rise's effect on your hip pocket.
- Annual payment discounts. If you're planning on paying for your policy in advance for the next year, look for a fund that offers discounts for doing so. Some of these funds offer discounts of up to 4%.
- Direct debit discounts. While we're on the topic of payment discounts, some funds offer a 4% discount for customers who pay for their premiums by direct debit.
- Health discounts. Some funds, such as myOwn, are dipping their toes in the water and starting to reward their healthier members with discounted premiums.
What happens if you don't have private health insurance?
The Australian Government has introduced a number of schemes to encourage people who can afford private health care to take it out. Private health care takes the burden off the public health system so that people who really need it can access it when they need to. There are therefore a few schemes that may impact you if you don't have private health insurance.
- Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) loading. This is designed to encourage Australians to maintain health insurance from a younger age. It does this by increasing premiums by 2% for every year after your 31st birthday that you don't have cover.
- Medicare Levy Surcharge (MLS). This is an additional tax penalty ranging from 1% to 1.5% of your annual income, depending on how much you earn, and is applied every year that you do not have an adequate private health insurance policy.
- Private health insurance rebate. One of the major benefits of having private health insurance is being able to claim the private health insurance rebate. The rebate is determined by your age, your relationship status and your income.
What's new in health insurance?
Health insurance in Australia is changing. For more details on the upcoming healthcare reforms and what they mean for you, check out our detailed analysis or watch the 2-minute video below.
Can you get cover if you're not an Australian citizen?
Yes, you can. Australian health funds offer a range of cover options for those moving to Australia on either long term or short term visas. These policies are generally called Overseas Visitors Health Cover (OVHC) or Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). The type of cover you need will depend on your visa and whether or not you're required to have health insurance while you're living in Australia. However, people from countries that Australia has a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement with can access a certain level of subsidised treatment from Medicare. Be aware that the benefits are very limited, with anything but the most vital medical services likely not covered.
Reciprocal Health Care Agreement countries
5 Steps to compare health insurance
Each health fund is different, policy prices, services covered, annual benefit limits, excess options and sign up offers can vary.
This is why comparing is so important, as you could easily miss out on a better deal if you rush into a decision. Here are some key steps to follow:
- Think about your requirements. Tailoring your search to your budget and lifestyle is a good starting point for comparing. For example, if you are young and you don't want to spend much, the basic cover might be preferable.
- Find out what services you're paying for. There's not much point in paying more for a higher level of cover if you are unlikely to use any of the additional services.
- Shop around. You can compare your options in many ways. Our health insurance tool also allows you to do detailed side-by-side comparisons.
- Consider all the costs. Remember to consider not only the premium costs, but also any excesses, co-payments and deductibles that you may have to pay.
- Know what the annual benefit limits are. Extras apply benefit limits to many included services. This is the maximum you can claim per year for a specific service.
Looking to save? Check out these health insurance deals
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