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HCF health insurance policy review

HCF has a range of health insurance options to suit every budget

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Hospitals Contribution Fund (HCF) is one of the largest and well-known private health insurance brands in Australia. As a not-for-profit provider, HCF has committed to re-investing its earnings back into the fund, allowing it to offer cheap premium rates and savings to its members.

Top 3 things to know
  1. HCF is not-for-profit.
  2. Good for member benefits.
  3. Good for offering a range of family packages for various budgets.

Who is HCF?

HCF is a not-for-profit insurance company, meaning any profit goes back into the fund rather than being shared among shareholders. Over the last 5 years, HCF have paid out more in premiums to members in benefits than the industry average.

HCF Health Insurance deals HCF Health Insurance deals

HCF members can get loyalty rewards and discounts across Australian stores

Health fund members can claim 10% off Rebel gift cards, 5% off Woolworths gift cards & more.

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What health insurance options are available?

BenefitHCF Hospital Bronze PlusHCF Hospital Standard Silver PlusHCF Hospital Silver PlusHCF Hospital Gold
Emergency ambulance
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Rehabilitation
  • Minimum Benefit Payable
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Hospital psychiatric services
  • Minimum Benefit Payable
  • Minimum Benefit Payable
  • Minimum Benefit Payable
  • Yes
Palliative care
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Brain and nervous system
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Eye (not cataracts)
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Ear, nose and throat
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Tonsils, adenoids and grommets
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Bone, joint and muscle
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Joint reconstructions
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Kidney and bladder
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Male reproductive system
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Digestive system
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Hernia and appendix
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Gastrointestinal endoscopy
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Gynaecology
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Miscarriage and termination of pregnancy
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy for cancer
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Pain management
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Skin
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Breast surgery (medically necessary)
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Diabetes management (excluding insulin pumps)
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Heart and vascular system
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Lung and chest
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Blood
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Back, neck and spine
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Plastic and reconstructive surgery (medically necessary)
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Dental surgery
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Podiatric surgery (provided by a registered podiatric surgeon)
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Implantation of hearing devices
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Cataracts
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
Joint replacements
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
Dialysis for chronic kidney failure
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
Pregnancy and birth
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
Assisted reproductive services
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
Weight loss surgery
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
Insulin pumps
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
Pain management with device
  • Excluded
  • Excluded
  • Yes
  • Yes
Sleep studies
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
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  • HCF Starter Extras. This basic extras policy gives you 100% back on one dental check per year at participating providers and a $350 limit per person.
  • HCF Starter Extras (with optical). Covers the same services as Starter Extras but also includes optical, including glasses and contact lenses and has a $400 limit per person.
  • HCF Mid Extras. This comprehensive policy gives you 100% back on up to two dental checks per year. It also includes prescription glasses - excluding some add-ons - and free digital retinal imaging eye check as well as cover on a range of therapies.
  • HCF Vital Extras - For around $50 a month you can get a range of important services on a range of therapies as well as everything in the Mid extras.
  • HCF Top Extras - The most comprehensive cover, this one gives you higher annual limits and increases your loyalty limits each year.

Looking for both hospital and extras cover? You can combine any hospital policy and extras policy from the previous two tabs, or you can choose one of these three custom policies that combine hospital cover and extras cover you can't buy on their own:

  • My Future Basic Plus 250, 500 or 750. The hospital policy in this package is an enhanced Bronze policy offering cover for bones, joints, hernias, skin issues and dental surgery. The extras policy is quite basic, covering optical, general dental, major dental, a few therapies, emergency ambulance and some vaccines. You can choose between three different hospital excesses: $250, $500 or $750. A higher excess means lower premiums, but it also reduces your benefit limits on your extras policy.
  • My Family Silver Plus. The hospital policy in this package offers more than what is required of a Silver policy, but slightly less than what you'd get through HCF's standalone Silver Plus policy since it doesn't cover kidney dialysis, insulin pumps, cataracts or joint replacements. That makes it ideal for families that want a high level of cover but may not need treatments that are largely associated with ageing. The extras policy covers optical, general dental, major dental, a range of therapies and emergency ambulance. Other than optical, you get a combined limit on the other treatments meaning you can spend your limits however you choose.
  • My Family Advanced Silver Plus. The hospital policy in this package is practically the same as what you get in the My Family Silver Plus policy except that you get full cover for podiatric surgery rather than limited benefits. The extras policy is very similar as well, except you're covered for orthodontics, artificial health aids, podiatry and a few others. Your benefit limits are also slightly higher on a few extras treatments.

How does HCF Ambulance Cover work?

Ambulance Cover from HCF is only available for residents of NSW and the ACT. It provides cover for emergency ambulance travel provided by state government services anywhere in Australia.

You also have an annual cover limit for medically necessary, non-emergency ambulance services where your doctor requires you to be transported by ambulance, for up to $5,000. This occurs in situations where your condition needs to be monitored and the right medical support provided while you are in transit.

This cover is offered for singles, couples, families and single parent families, and there is no need to pay upfront for the ambulance service you use once you're insured.

Ambulance Cover is available as a standalone policy or with Cash Back Cover. Cash Back Cover offers a cash benefit to help you cover additional expenses that arise when you are sick or injured. Available from $2 a week for singles, Cash Back Cover provides:

  • A $5,000 benefit for accidents requiring surgery
  • A $5,000 benefit for serious specified medical conditions including malignant cancer, chronic kidney failure, heart disease requiring bypass surgery, heart attack OR stroke

You're also eligible to make multiple claims, up to a limit of $20,000 for singles and $40,000 for families.

Policy limitations, exclusions, waiting periods and excesses

Always check the conditions and the list of general exclusions to make sure you know what is and isn't covered. HCF will not pay your claim if:

  • The ambulance transport you receive does not meet the approved definition supplied in the PDS (For example, if it is for transport you receive when you are discharged from hospital)
  • You are covered by another arrangement, such as a state government ambulance subscription scheme
  • It is for transfers between hospitals
  • It is for transport provided by an ambulance service not recognised by HCF

Are there waiting periods?

There are waiting periods which apply when you take out HCF Ambulance Cover. A one-day waiting period applies to emergency ambulance. There is a two-month waiting period for medically necessary non-emergency ambulance. If you require ambulance transport or treatment for a pre-existing ailment or condition, keep in mind that you will have to serve a 12-month waiting period.

How much does HCF Ambulance Cover cost?

There are several factors that can influence how much HCF Ambulance Cover costs:

  • Whether you take out a single policy or a couples, family or single parent family policy.
  • Whether you live in NSW or the ACT.
  • Your age and income have an impact on the amount of Australian Government private health insurance rebate you are entitled to.

Member offers

As a not-for-profit organisation, HCF have a number of member offers and benefits including:

  • Diamond members. If you've been with HCF for over 25 years and have a top tier policy, you are rewarded with preferential servicing, a growing range of exclusive offers, VIP experiences and more.
  • Ruby. If you've been with HCF for more than 10 years, you get access to special offers and rewards, exclusive access to unique events and more.
  • Emerald. For 5 years service or more you can access an increasing range of discounts and privileges from HCF partner brands.
  • Opal. Customers who have been with HCF for under 5 years are still rewarded with various exclusive offers and rewards.

How to make a claim

If you need to make an extras claim with HCF, you can lodge your claim in the following ways:

  • On the spot. You can swipe your HCF membership card when you visit your service provider to claim immediately.
  • Via the HCF mobile app. You can take a photo of your receipt with your smartphone to submit your claim.
  • Online. Online claims can be made through the HCF member services portal. You'll need to post your original receipts to the health fund to complete your claim.
  • At a branch. Claims can be lodged in an HCF branch by presenting your membership card and your original receipts.
  • By post. You also have the option of downloading a claim form from the HCF website or phoning the health fund to request one. You can then send the completed claim form and your receipts to: HCF, GPO Box 4242, Sydney NSW 2001.

As for medical bills from your treating doctor, if you were treated under the HCF Medicover agreement the bills will go directly to HCF. If not, you can submit your health insurance claim at any HCFor Medicare branch.

Overseas visitors or Students

If you're planning on visiting or working in Australia, HCF have a range of options available to you. It's important you have the right level of health insurance as part of your visa requirements.

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14 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    JayApril 26, 2019

    I am 78 female, living alone. Would like quotes for hospital, ambulance, specialists doctors, some extras like heart, limbs, hips, dental, along the lines of silver in HCF. Looking what offers available.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JeniApril 27, 2019Staff

      Hi Jay,

      Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

      You may click on the green get deal button on this page you’re looking at and you will be redirected to HCF’s official page where you may get quotes for your health insurance needs. Also, if you enter all details asked in the table on this page, our health insurance advisor will get in touch to give you options and help you find health insurance that will suit your needs.

      I hope this helps.

      Thank you and have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Jeni

  2. Default Gravatar
    RosemaryApril 12, 2019

    Do you have to have a Community First bank account to open with HCF?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JeniApril 13, 2019Staff

      Hi Rosemary,

      Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

      You may take out any HCF health cover even if you do not have a Community First bank account. You may click on the green get deal button on this page and you’ll be redirected to HCF’s official page where you may learn more on their offered health products or get quotes. Also, on this page you’re looking at, you may enter all details asked on the table and an expert will get in touch to help you compare up-to-date policies from eight funds to see which one is best for you.

      I hope this helps.

      Thank you and have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Jeni

  3. Default Gravatar
    CherieApril 23, 2017

    I am looking for a cover which will cover an insulin pump

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ZubairApril 26, 2017Staff

      Hi Cherie,

      Thank you for your question.

      You have contacted finder.com.au, a comparison and information service and not actually HCF Health Insurance.

      On our health insurance for insulin pumps and diabetes page, you can find the HCF and other health funds who offer cover for an insulin pump.

      All the best,
      Zubair

  4. Default Gravatar
    NormJanuary 22, 2017

    Does the HCF completely cover all costs associated with “capsule endoscopy”. I have top cover for hospital and ambulance. Thanks

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      RichardJanuary 23, 2017Staff

      Hi Norm,

      Thanks for getting in touch. finder.com.au is a comparison service and does not have access to that kind of information. You will need to contact HCF directly about the specifics of your policy.

      I hope this was helpful,
      Richard

  5. Default Gravatar
    PeterJanuary 22, 2017

    Does mid cover hospital include day surgery admission? Thanks.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      RichardJanuary 23, 2017Staff

      Hi Peter,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Whether or not you’ll have cover will depend on the type of surgery. You should contact HCF directly about the specifics of your policy.

      Cheers,
      Richard

  6. Default Gravatar
    TomasOctober 21, 2016

    I cancelled my membership in HCF this year…it last more than half year…I like to make my membership active again.. i need more information how to continue with my request

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      RichardOctober 26, 2016Staff

      Hi Tomas,

      finder.com.au is a comparison service and not an insurer. You will need to contact HCF directly about this matter.

      Cheers,
      Richard

    • Default Gravatar
      robJuly 26, 2017

      can you tell me what cover i need 4 if i have heart attack

    • Default Gravatar
      DanielleJuly 27, 2017

      Hi Rob,

      Thank you for contacting finder. We are a comparison website and general information service, we’re more than happy to offer general advice.

      You may check HCF’s Critical Illness cover. It covers Heart; heart attack, angioplasty, bypass coronary arteries, open heart surgery, cardiomyopathy, pulmonary hypertension.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Danielle

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