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How does health insurance cover brain surgery?

Brain surgery is covered by all bronze tier health insurance policies — compare 30+ policies from $88 per month.

What you need to know

  • Brain surgery is a medical specialty that involves the surgical treatment of conditions and disorders of the brain and nervous system.
  • Brain surgery can be used to treat a variety of conditions and perform procedures to manage symptoms and improve function.
  • A bronze tier private health insurance policy can help cover the cost of private surgery.

Compare health insurance quotes for brain surgery and treatment

Here are some Finder policies that will cover some of the cost of brain surgery in a private hospital. All prices are based on a single individual with less than $93,000 income and living in Sydney.

1 - 10 of 91
Name Product Treatments Price Apply
starter bronze
Bronze$750 excess
ahm logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$88.70
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
HCF logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +18 other treatments covered
$91.11
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
Bupa logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +16 other treatments covered
$91.83
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
Bronze Hospital 750
Bronze$750 excess
AIA Health Insurance Pty Ltd logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$92.14
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
GMHBA Limited logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$93.64
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
Frank Health Insurance logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$93.71
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
starter bronze
Bronze$500 excess
ahm logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$94.96
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
nib logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$94.97
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
Frank Health Insurance logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$95.14
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
Bronze Hospital 500
Bronze$500 excess
AIA Health Insurance Pty Ltd logo
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Ear nose and throat
  • Blood
  • Back neck and spine
  • Dental surgery
  • Eye excluding cataracts
  • Cancer
  • Lung and chest
  • +14 other treatments covered
$96.98
per month
Go to Site
All treatments
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How can I pay for brain surgery?

Both Medicare and private health insurance can contribute towards the cost of brain surgery.

Public system

Medicare

Medicare can cover 100% of many of the MBS fees associated with brain surgery if you are treated as a public patient in a public hospital. Keep in mind though that if any healthcare provider charges more than the MBS fee, as they often do, you'll have to pay for it yourself.

Surgical Extraction

Private health insurance

You can get private health insurance for brain and nervous treatment with all bronze tier hospital policies. This can cover you for care in a private hospital and can include investigation and treatment of the brain, chemotherapy, immunotherapy for cancer and more. Costs generally range from around $88 a month.

How does medicare cover brain surgery and treatment?

Medicare will usually cover the cost of staying and being treated as a public patient in a public hospital. You generally won't be able to choose your own doctor or choose when you want to undergo brain treatment or surgery. This is largely because public waiting times are normally longer as they're busier, so you don't have the same flexibility as you would with private health care.

Medicare will also pay a benefit towards seeing a specialist, such as a neurosurgeon. The neurosurgical consultation structure consists of an initial consultation (Medicare Benefits Schedule no. 6007) and four categories of subsequent consultations. These categories relate to both the length of consultation time and the complexity of what is being discussed. Here's a break down of some of the prices (correct as of 7th September 2021):

  • Level 1. 6009 - Fee: $45.40 Benefit: 75% = $34.05, 85% = $38.60
  • Level 2. 6011 - Fee: $90.35 Benefit: 75% = $67.80, 85% = $76.80
  • Level 3. 6013 - Fee: $125.15 Benefit: 75% = $93.90, 85% = $106.40
  • Level 4. 6015 - Fee: $159.35 Benefit: 75% = $119.55, 85% = $135.45

Medicare also provides cover for deep brain stimulation, which is sometimes required for Parkinson's disease or for treating tremors or dystonia. Because there are so many different types of brain treatment, you should consult your local Medicare office to find out exactly what you're covered for.

How does private health insurance cover treatment?

You can get private health insurance for brain and nervous treatment with all bronze tier hospital policies. Costs generally range from around $88 a month and includes cover for:

  • Investigation and treatment of the brain
  • Brain-related conditions
  • Spinal cord and peripheral nervous system
  • Chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy for cancer (these come under a separate service but are also included in all bronze policies)

You will generally have to serve a waiting period of 2 months (12 months for pre-existing conditions) before you can claim though you will get to choose the doctor of your choice and treatment is generally very quick.

How much does health insurance cost?

We ask hundreds of Australians what they're paying for health insurance every month. Here's what they told us in June 2024.
  • Basic: $110
  • Bronze: $143
  • Silver: $162
  • Gold: $197
Price based on 1,000+ responses for single hospital insurance.

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Frequently asked questions

Written by

Gary Ross Hunter

Gary Ross Hunter is an editor at Finder, specialising in insurance. He’s been writing about life, travel, home, car, pet and health insurance for over 6 years and regularly appears as an insurance expert in publications including The Sydney Morning Herald, The Guardian and news.com.au. Gary holds a Kaplan Tier 2 General Advice General Insurance certification which meets the requirements of ASIC Regulatory Guide 146 (RG146). See full profile

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