Australian Unity review

fund-iconOverview

Founded over 180 years ago, Australian Unity is Australia’s first member-owned wellbeing company. It provides health, wealth and aged care services to over 1 million customers, including 300,000 members across the country.

While Australian Unity isn’t not-for-profit, as part of the Members Health Fund Alliance, it diverts profits back into the business to benefit members rather than shareholders.

It has six hospital health insurance policies for customers, including Gold, with no restrictions. That includes three Silver Plus plans designed for different life stages, from young couples, to single parents, to growing families. There are also six extras plans.

Members also have access to Wellplan Rewards®, a loyalty program with a range of discounts on everyday shopping.

fund-iconKey features

  • Member-owned, with profits going back into the company
  • No gap preventative dental cover on selected plans
  • Fast on-the-spot claims through HICAPS and the mobile app

fund-iconHospital cover

Nobody chooses to go to hospital. But when you do, hospital cover will help you get the treatment you need, where and when you want it. It also helps to pay the bills, as fees for hospital rooms and specialists can add up.

Think about what services you’re likely to need, in line with your budget. If you earn over $90,000 individually or $180,000 as a couple, you could avoid paying the Medicare Levy Surcharge.

Australian Unity offers a choice of six plans, from no-frills basic cover through to a Gold plan that covers almost everything. There’s also three mid-level Silver Plus plans, based on the needs of your family unit.

All Australian Unity hospital plans come with:

  • Excess waived for accidents
  • Hospital care and rehabilitation at home/li>
  • Increased cover if injury or illness is caused by an accident for members on basic, bronze and silver hospital covers (but some conditions will apply)
  • Access to the Wellplan Rewards® loyalty program
Simple Hospital
(Basic Plus)

Australian Unity’s budget cover for accidents and simple hospital procedures, although a lot of services will be excluded or restricted with this level of cover. It’s typically taken out by healthy young singles and couples without children.

Key inclusions:

  • Dental surgery
  • Joint constructions
  • Tonsils, adenoids and grommets
  • Hernia and appendix
Standard Hospital
(Bronze Plus)

A hospital plan that’s a step above the Basic Plus package. It covers accidents and common hospital services. It’s typically taken out by singles, couples and families.

Key inclusions:

  • Dental surgery
  • Breast surgery (medically necessary)
  • Chemo, radiotherapy and immunotherapy
  • Gynaecology
Intermediate Hospital
(Silver Plus)

A medium level of cover with a wider range of common procedures than the Bronze and Basic packages.

Key inclusions:

  • Chemo, radiotherapy and immunotherapy
  • Ear, nose and throat
  • Heart and vascular system
  • Sleep studies
Classic Hospital
(Silver Plus)

Mid-lever cover with a broad range of procedures including cataracts and joint replacements that aren’t covered in the Intermediate Hospital package.

Pregnancy and birth services are not included, so if you’re starting a family, Advanced or Ultimate Hospital cover may be more suitable.

Key inclusions:

  • Joint reconstructions
  • Cataracts
  • Pain management with device
  • Podiatry
  • Heart and vascular system
Advanced Hospital
(Silver Plus)

One of the highest levels of cover for most hospital services, including midwifery and assisted reproductive services. Ideal for people who are starting or growing their family.

Key inclusions:

  • Pregnancy and birth
  • Assisted reproductive services
  • Weight loss surgery
  • Dialysis for chronic kidney failure
Ultimate Hospital
(Gold)

Australian Unity’s most expensive plan. Comprehensive cover with all hospital services, including pregnancy, the BumptoBaby program for mums-to-be, psychiatry in a private hospital and more.

Key inclusions:

  • Non-restricted hospital psychiatric services
  • BumptoBaby program

fund-iconAmbulance Cover

All hospital plans include emergency ambulance trips to hospital (some conditions apply, so check if you’re considering this policy). You’re also covered for two ambulance attendant visits per person, per year, where you’re not taken to hospital.

fund-iconExtras cover

extras-cover Extras reset

From dental, to optical, to chiro and more, extras insurance helps cover the bills for routine treatments with rebates of up to 100%.

While we’ve summarised the key points of each plan below, it’s always worth digging a little deeper into any gap fees, how much you can claim back, and whether your preferred healthcare provider, such as your local dentist, has an agreement with the health fund.

Take time to work out what you need and what you’re prepared to pay. If this feels a bit overwhelming, you can speak to one of our experts who can talk you through what is and isn’t included in each extras policy.

Australian Unity has six extras plans to choose from. There’s basic cover for those on a budget, through to a comprehensive plan that offers $8,500 cover per person, per year.

A quick note: the limits below are the cumulative total of what you could claim back if you claimed back the full amount on every extra. It’s not the limit per extra.

Basic Extras

Covers the basics, including general dental, physio, optical and remedial massage, with a limit of $950 per person, per year.

Standard Extras

Mid-level cover that lets you claim 60% back on general dental, physio, chiro and remedial massage, to a limit of $1,200 per person, per year.

Intermediate Extras

Mid-level cover that lets you claim 100% back on optical, and selected dental services through Australian Unity’s No Gap Dental Network.

Comprehensive Extras

One of Australian Unity’s highest levels of cover, designed with families in mind. Claim 100% back on preventative dental, up to $800 per person, per year. Family limits apply.

Classic Extras

A high level of cover for a wide range of extras. Claim 100% back on combined general and preventative dental up to $800. Also covers orthodontics, physio, chiro and natural therapies.

Advanced 80% Extras

The highest level of cover with 80% back on all extras, up to $8,500 per person, per year. Includes unlimited preventative dental, plus orthodontics, natural therapies and psychology.

fund-iconWaiting periods

To stop people signing up, claiming, then cancelling their health insurance, all insurers apply waiting periods. Generally, the more expensive the treatment, the longer you’ll wait. But keep an eye out for special deals with waiting periods reduced or waived.

Simple Hospital (Basic Plus), Standard Hospital (Bronze Plus), Intermediate Hospital (Silver Plus), Classic Hospital (Silver Plus)
  • 2 months – psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care
  • 12 months – pre-existing conditions, excluding psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care
  • 2 months – all other treatments included in your cover
  • No waiting period – emergency ambulance or hospital treatment for accidents
Advanced Hospital (Silver Plus)
  • 2 months – psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care
  • 9 months – default (shared room/public hospital) for pregnancy and birth
  • 12 months – pregnancy and birth in an Australian Unity agreement private hospital
  • 12 months – midwife in private practice services
  • 12 months – pre-existing conditions, excluding psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care
  • 2 months – all other treatments included in your cover
  • No waiting period – emergency ambulance or hospital treatment for accidents
Ultimate Hospital (Gold)
  • 2 months – psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care
  • 9 months – default (shared room/public hospital) for pregnancy and birth
  • 12 months – pregnancy and birth in an Australian Unity agreement private hospital
  • 12 months – pre-existing conditions, excluding psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care
  • 2 months – all other treatments included in your cover
  • No waiting period – emergency ambulance or hospital treatment for accidents

fund-iconMember benefits

Along with a broad range of hospital and extra covers, Australian Unity offers members a range of health programs. Depending on your level and length of cover, you can get free support for mental health, living with chronic conditions, preparing for parenthood, dental health and more.

Members also have access to Australian Unity’s Wellplan Rewards®, a loyalty program that comes with a range of discounts at popular retailers. You’ll be able to save on everyday shopping like groceries, petrol, meals and alcohol.

fund-iconHow to claim

Australian Unity offers a range of ways to claim. You can claim on the spot through the HICAPS payment system at your provider. You can also claim online, through the mobile app, or by phone, email, mail or fax.

fund-iconHospital agreements

Australian Unity has agreements with most private hospitals and day clinics across Australia – see the scale and lists below. When comparing policies, it’s worth checking if your preferred local hospitals and clinics are covered. Our specialists at Health Insurance Comparison can do this for you.

NSW – 184
See the full list

Victoria – 149
See the full list

Queensland – 103
See the full list

South Australia – 53
See the full list

Western Australia – 44
See the full list

ACT – 13
See the full list

Tasmania – 8
See the full list

fund-iconCustomer service

Australian Unity received 31 complaints from 1 January to 30 March 2020. That’s 3.6% of complaints vs 2.7% market share, indicating customer service is average.

fund-iconAustralian Unity FAQs

No, but profits go back into the business to benefit members.
There’s no restrictions to joining Australian Unity. Anyone can apply.
Yes, you can sign up right here, right now. We’ll take care of the paperwork.
No, providing you transfer to an equivalent cover with Australian Unity within 30 days of leaving your old fund.
Yes, you can choose a lower or higher level of cover. If you move to a higher level of cover, you will usually need to serve new waiting periods on the extra or higher portion of your cover.
Most Australians are eligible to receive a rebate from the government. This will depend on your age and income. To learn what you’re entitled to, see this rebate table.
If you’re joining for the first time and you’re 31 or over, you usually need to pay 2% loading for each year you’ve gone without health cover since your 31st birthday. You can find out more here.
Extras reset each 31 December.
Generally, 23. If they’re studying full time, dependents can be covered as a student under a family policy up to the age of 25. Children must not be married or living in a de facto relationship. Read our guide to learn more.
Australian Unity Health Limited is a registered Australian health insurer.
You can call them with general enquiries on 13 29 29 or via their website form. Members can also contact the fund through their app.
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