Massive Health Insurance Overhauls Have Begun — Does Your Policy Still Have You Covered?

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Change is coming, and for some Aussies, they’re already feeling the effects. On April 1st of this year, the Australian Government began to roll out new legislation designed to make Private Health Insurance easier to understand — but all of these changes have Aussies more confused than ever about their health insurance.

This new government legislation separates Private Health Insurance into four tiers: basic, bronze, silver, and gold. Insurance funds can also add a “Plus” option to the lower 3 tiers, creating a total of 7 to choose from.

This leaves many Aussies questioning what their health insurance is actually covering, and what they’re paying for. Our Australian team of health insurance professionals can help you make sense of all of these new tiers and policies. We can help you identify the insurance you need while saving as much as possible. Over the last year, our free comparison service has saved Aussies an average of $340.68* by comparing health funds.

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Step 1: Select your current life stage below.
Step 2: Once you select your preferred coverage options, you will have the opportunity to compare quotes from multiple health funds.

5 Things You Need to Know About the New PHI Tier System

Each tier has a minimum requirement to cover certain hospital services and treatments, and the addition of the Plus tiers allows health funds to add additional coverage or benefits to each level of coverage. The levels of hospital cover will now be classified as restricted or unrestricted which has a direct effect on how much you pay out of pocket.

There are already over 70,000 health policies from different health funds on offer in Australia — with the introduction of this new system, it creates the potential for there to be even more policies to choose from.

The good news is that all of these changes have made health funds much more competitive. So with help from our team of insurance experts, it’s easier than ever for you to get a good deal on the health insurance you need. Despite all of the confusion surrounding this new legislation, here are some changes that can benefit you, depending on your situation:

  1. Health funds are now able to offer additional discounts on hospital cover for Aussies aged 18-29. It isn’t mandatory that your health fund offers this discount. They also vary based on your age and the health fund you choose, but choosing the right one can potentially save you hundreds of dollars per year. If you’re on a policy with an age-based discount, you’re entitled to keep that discount until age 41 where it will then be gradually phased out.
  2. Health funds are now able to offer travel and accommodation benefits to regional and rural policyholders as well. These benefits will fall under hospital cover and much like the age discount, it’s not mandatory that your health fund offers this benefit. If they do, it can vary greatly between funds. We suggest using our free comparison service at HealthInsuranceComparison.com.au and speaking with one of our insurance experts to get a better idea of what you can get from each health fund.
  3. For the first time in almost 20 years, the government is increasing the permitted voluntary excess level on your health insurance policy. The maximum allowed excess will increase from $500 to $750 for singles, and from $1000 to $1500 for couples or families. This offers another chance to save money on your monthly premium — while still getting the cover you need.
  4. Aussies with limited cover who are in need of psychiatric care or drug or alcohol rehabilitation programs are now able to upgrade to a policy with higher benefits without serving a waiting period. Insurance holders looking to upgrade their policy for these services are only allowed to use this exemption one time before having to serve a two month waiting period.
  5. Government legislation took effect on April 1 this year, but health funds have until April 1 of 2020 to fully comply with the new changes. Many funds have already started to switch over. So if you have an existing private health insurance policy they may have already transferred you into one of their new tiered policies. So it’s important to check up on your health insurance policy and make sure it’s still working for you and covering your needs.

In 2018 Our Award-Winning Experts Helped Thousands of Aussies Save on Health Insurance

Health insurance policies were already difficult to understand before all of these changes — now it’s nearly impossible for the average Aussie to know what they’re paying for. What was supposed to be a process for simplifying Australia’s private healthcare system has instead turned into a nightmare for many Aussies.

Our experts at Health Insurance Comparison knew this was coming and prepared in advance. Our free service lets you compare policies side-by-side to maximise your savings. With the help of one of our insurance experts, you can finally make sense of this new system. Our experts can show you how to use it to your advantage, and potentially save money on your policy. Over the last year, our experts have helped Aussies just like you save an average of $340.68 by using our free comparison service.

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Step 1: Select your state below.
Step 2: After answering a few questions, you will have the opportunity to compare quotes in your area and could be eligible for significant savings.

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This article is opinion only and should not be taken as medical or financial advice. Check with a financial professional before making any decisions.

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