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Health insurance with no waiting period

Hospital policies always have a minimum 2-month waiting period – but some extras policies let you claim right away.

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Can I get health insurance with no waiting period?

No waiting period hospital

No for hospital

You can't skip waiting periods for hospital treatment in a private hospital. You will always need to have hospital insurance for at least 2 months before you can claim or 12 months if you need treatment for a pre-existing condition.

No waiting period extras

Yes for extras

Some extras insurance policies let you skip waiting periods for general dental, optical, physio and more. Remember, extras refers to out-of-hospital treatment only.

Can I get hospital insurance with no waiting period?

No. Hospital insurance always has a waiting period of at least 2 months. This is the same for all insurers. They need to adhere to the guidelines set out by the Private Health Insurance Ombudsman.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy: 12 months

All childbirth and pregnancy services come with a 12-month waiting period before you can claim on health insurance.

Pre-existing conditions

Pre-existing conditions: 12 months

You will need to wait 12 months if the medical issue you need treatment for is considered a pre-existing condition. For example, if you tear a ligament, then you take out health insurance, you will need to wait 12 months for surgery. There will generally be medical records showing if you had your illness or injury before you took out insurance.

Rehabilitation

Psychiatric care, rehabilitation and palliative care: 2 months

All psychiatric care, rehabilitation or palliative care has a 2-month waiting period – even if it's considered a pre-existing condition.

Hospital

Hospital treatment: 2 months

When you take out hospital insurance, you will need to pay for cover for 2 months before you are covered. Health insurers are not allowed to waive hospital waiting periods.

private contract
Switching funds?
If you're switching to a similar level of health insurance cover, you won't have to re-serve any waiting periods for treatment you were previously covered for. For example, if both your new and previous policy covered joint reconstructions, you will be covered straight away.

Can I get extras insurance with no waiting period?

Yes. Some extras policies will let you skip waiting periods for services such as general dental, optical, remedial massages and allied health services such as physio.

You can skip 2- and 6-month waiting periods with an ahm Lifestyle Extras policy (this includes general dental, optical and physio). It's the only policy we found that permanently offers this benefit.

Other insurers often offer sign-up deals that let you skip 2- and 6-month waiting periods for extras only. We've listed Finder partners below:

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Get 6 weeks free and up to $250 in gift cards

Plus no 2&6 month waits on extras. New members only, T&Cs apply. Ends July 10.

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Join and earn up to 140,000 Qantas Points

Plus, skip the 2 & 6 month waiting periods on Extras with combined Hospital and Extras cover. Eligibility criteria and T&Cs apply.

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Get 6 weeks free + Waive 2 & 6 months waiting periods

Join hospital only or combined hospital & extras cover by 30 June 2022 for new members.

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Compare more health insurance options

Looking to do more research? You can use this free tool to see health insurance quotes side by side. Keep an eye out for the yellow banner highlighting any insurers waiving waiting periods as a sign-up deal.

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Frequently asked questions about no waiting periods

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6 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    KymAugust 20, 2018

    I have been with a fund for many years and I recently upgrade to premium hospital cover. Due to the upgrade I now have to wait 12 months for some pre-existing conditions. If I were to transfer to another fund to cover of the same level would the wait time continue?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaAugust 27, 2018Staff

      Hi Kym,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      Generally, if you switch to another, according to Private Health Ombudsman, “you will not have to re-serve waiting periods if you transfer to a policy that is at the same or a lower level of benefit. Your new fund must give you continuity for the waiting periods you have already served. However, if your new plan includes new or higher benefits that were not part of your old policy, you will have to complete a waiting period before you can access those benefits.”

      To give you a short answer, you should not wait another 12 months if you are to transfer to another fund and that fund will cover the same level.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  2. Default Gravatar
    KinJuly 4, 2017

    Hi how long waiting period for pregnancy insurance.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayJuly 4, 2017Staff

      Hi Kin,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      Generally, waiting periods vary and are different for hospital cover and general treatment (extras) cover. As for obstetrics (pregnancy), the government sets 12 months as the maximum waiting period that funds can impose for hospital treatment. You may like to read more about how waiting periods work on health insurance.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      May

  3. Default Gravatar
    KarenMay 15, 2017

    Is there any promotions about waiting periods being waived with any health fund with extras only if we are in WA

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ZubairMay 16, 2017Staff

      Hi Karen,

      Thank you for your question.

      Currently, in our panel of health funds, AHM has an offer of waiving waiting periods on extras services only. To check the details, please head to our list of health insurance deals and offers.

      Cheers,
      Zubair

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