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Singles Health Insurance

What's the best* health cover for singles? A guide to finding the right cover.

This article discusses the factors that make a singles policy the best*, tips for getting maximum value out of your cover, how life stage can impact your singles health insurance requirements and the government incentives and penalties to be aware of.

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What makes a singles health insurance policy the best*?

A singles policy that meets your specific needs is what makes it the best*. However, there are some general features you may want to check are included:

How do you decide what kind of cover is right for you?

No matter your life stage, the right kind of health cover you need depends on your general health, your lifestyle, your income and your personal preferences. Some examples include:

  • Whether you play contact sports or extreme sports such as skiing or parasailing, in which case your risk of injury would be higher. In this case you may be able to claim for accident treatment with hospital cover and physical therapies with extras cover.
  • Whether you have a physical condition such as poor eyesight or bad teeth, in which case extras cover would be more valuable to you. Depending on your level of cover you may be able to claim for major dental procedures and eye therapy.
  • Whether you are a full-time student under 25, in which case you may already be covered if your parents have a family health insurance policy in place.

Health insurance tips for singles

    • Don't be afraid to switch. If you find a better policy with another health fund, don’t be afraid to switch. In many cases your benefits and any waiting periods served can be transferred to your new fund.
    • Know what the excess is. Avoid policies that have both an excess and a co-payment, or you could be made to pay a lump sum on admission to hospital and then a further sum for every day you’re there.
    • Know what the gap is. Try and join a health fund with Access Gap Cover, and check that your practitioner participates in it prior to treatment. Access Gap Cover reduces or in some cases removes any out-of-pocket expenses you may incur.
    • Don’t choose based on price alone. With health insurance for singles, you generally get the cover you pay for, so if it’s noticeably cheaper than other policies, chances are it doesn’t cover you to the same extent.
    • Read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS). This outlines the terms, conditions and any exclusions that apply to your policy. If you don’t read the fine print, you may get a nasty surprise later on if you ever need to make a claim.

Smartphone, stethoscope and pens

How can young singles benefit from cover?

Out of the two types of health insurance available, young people tend to lean more towards extras cover, which provides a more immediate return on investment by allowing them to claim for optical, dental and physio fees, which aren't covered by Medicare.

On the other hand, hospital cover is sometimes viewed as a waste of money since young people feel it's unlikely they'll require any hospital treatment until later in life. However, the statistics below tell a different story:

Some people choose to pair a cheap basic hospital policy with a higher level of extras cover. That way they are covered in the event of accidental injury and also for the commonly used out of hospital services mentioned above.

Health insurance typeFeatures
Extras cover
  • Access to no-gap dental or optical programs.
  • Healthy lifestyle benefits for services such as gym classes, yoga, pilates and natural therapies.
  • Cover for physical therapies (e.g. physiotherapy, chiropractic, remedial massage).
  • Cover for emergency ambulance transport (if taking out a standalone extras policy).
Hospital cover
  • Cover for accidental injuries that require hospitalisation.
  • Cover for emergency ambulance transport.
  • Ability to choose your own doctor.
  • Ability to avoid waiting queues for elective surgery.

Is it worth taking out health insurance early as a single?

In addition to the benefits outlined above, there are some other incentives for taking out cover that some singles may not be aware of. The benefits of getting the best* health insurance for singles earlier rather than later include:

    • Lifetime Health Cover loading. This is a 2% loading for every year you don’t have private hospital cover after turning 31. If you don't take out cover before then, your health insurance costs will start to rise.
    • Medicare Levy Surcharge. If you're a single earning over $90,000 pa, the government will charge you an extra 1% in tax if you don’t have hospital cover, 1.25% if you earn over $105,000 pa and 1.5% over $140,000 pa.
    • Government rebate. If you earn less than the threshold amount, you will receive a rebate for having private cover, either in the form of a premium discount from your fund or as a tax rebate.

Can single parents be covered by a singles policy?

Unfortunately they can't. In the past, single parents were forced to get cover under a family policy, which meant they would pay double what a single would pay on only one income. Happily, changes to government legislation in 2007 enabled health funds to offer premium reductions to single parents, making health insurance more accessible.

Be aware that the size of the reduction is up to the health fund (one might offer 10% and another 25%), so be sure to shop around to find out which ones are offering the highest discount. If you're a single parent who took out cover prior to 2007 make sure to check that you are receiving a reduction and if not, consider switching to another fund.

Health insurance articles for other life stages

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* The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your personal financial circumstances when comparing products.
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4 Responses to Singles Health Insurance

  1. Default Gravatar
    Keva | May 18, 2017

    Hiya, I’m really glad I have found this info. Nowadays bloggers publish just about gossips and net and this is actually frustrating. A good blog with exciting content, that is what I need. Thanks for keeping this website, I’ll be visiting it. Do you do newsletters? Can’t find it.

    • Staff
      Liezl | May 19, 2017

      Hi Keva,

      Thank you for your feedback. We are happy to hear about your positive experience with our website. Our team constantly endeavours to provide accurate and up to date information that will help our users make a more informed decision.

      Please feel free to browse around and have a good read. If you wish to subscribe to our newsletter, you can sign-up here.

      Cheers,
      Liezl

  2. Default Gravatar
    John | March 8, 2017

    Hello and I am with the Teachers health and my wife and I have top hospital and extras cover. I am over 65 and my wife is over 61. years of age. I am looking to have the same cover with as with Teachers Health but we do not need “pregnancy” cover that Teachers Health covers. but we do need all other cover options that Teachers Health does cover, eg. cardiac, glasses, acupuncture, massage , physio, knee /hip replacements etc.

    • Staff
      Zubair | March 10, 2017

      Hi John,

      Thank you for your question.

      finder.com.au is a comparison and information service and we are not permitted to provide our users with personalised financial advice or product recommendations.

      If you would like to compare policies from Australian health funds, please enter your details into quote comparison tool, once you have done, you should consider your own cover requirements and review the different benefits covered for policies by clicking on ‘more info’ option prior to taking out cover.

      Cheers,
      Zubair

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