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Seniors health insurance

Don’t be left on a public hospital waiting list – get seniors health insurance and skip the long queues.

What you need to know

  • Health insurance helps you access medical care in the private hospital system.
  • The private system has shorter wait times for surgery, plus a few other nice quality of life benefits.
  • Everyone is different, but people over 50 are likely to need more complex coverage offered by Silver and Gold policies.

What does seniors health insurance cover?

Hospital cover


Hospital cover gives access to treatment in a private hospital as a private patient. You can choose your doctor, get your own hospital room (where one is available) and have more flexibility over scheduling procedures. You can choose from 4 levels of hospital cover in Australia: basic, bronze, silver and gold. Which you choose is very much dependant on your specific health needs - bit more on that below.

Extras cover


Extras insurance helps pay for out-of-hospital treatments which Medicare doesn't usually cover. This can include dental, physiotherapy, chiro and optical. Many policies also cover ambulance fees which the public system does not pay for, unless you live in Queensland or Tasmania. What level of extras plans you pick is a personal choice. Extras area a lot like one of the old coupon books you bought from your kid's school - so long as you use the benefits, they are good value for money.

What kind of hospital policy is right for seniors?

Hospital policies come in four main flavours: basic, bronze, silver and gold. The specific treatments each tier of policy needs to cover is set by law, so it makes it a bit easier to compare apples to apples.

For most seniors, a silver of gold policy is probably going to be the best place to start comparing. This is just because we have more complex health needs as we get older, many of which are only covered by the more comprehensive policies. That's not to say you will need a silver or gold policy though - you gotta make that call for yourself.

Why compare health insurance with Finder?

  • We don't ask for your phone or email to see prices.

  • With 1 click, you can open your results to nearly every fund in Australia.

  • You pay the same price as going direct – we charge no fees.

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Do seniors need health insurance?


  • The wait times are usually shorter.
  • You can choose your own hospital and doctor.
  • You have more choice over your appointment time.
  • It can cancel out the MLS if you still earn an income.
  • Emergency ambulances are covered with basic policies.
  • When you hit 65, you're entitled to a higher rebate.


  • It may be too expensive for you – policies start from around $80 per month.
  • You may be happy to wait longer on the public health system.
  • If you've never had health insurance, you will have to pay the LHC loading – a 70% additional charge on top of your premiums.

Public vs private waiting times for procedures

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