Choose you own doctor
Getting Private Hospital Insurance means you can have the choice of your own doctor or specialist for treatment, as well as the location of that treatment. In a public hospital, there is no guarantee that a doctor or specialist is available at the time of your treatment, or that the same doctor will oversee the post recovery period. Private hospital treatment gives you greater control, and therefore peace of mind.
Don't be put on a waiting list
Private Health insurance allows you greater control over the timing of your hospital treatment. In the public hospital system you may go on a waiting list, based on an assessment of how urgent your treatment is. You could wait more than what is clinically recommended for elective surgery; sometimes longer than 6 or even 12 months. This can leave you suffering discomfort or anxiety during this period. Getting Private Hospital Insurance means you are treated at your convenience; you decide your level of urgency for your treatment.
Savings on tax & loadings
Getting Private Hospital Insurance may help you to obtain exemptions from paying the following:
1. The Medicare Levy Surcharge - this is a Government scheme that imposes an additional tax (on top of the 2% Medicare Levy). The Medicare Levy Surcharge applies to individuals, families or couples earning over the income threshold who do not have an appropriate level of private hospital insurance. The income threshold for the 2014/15 taxation year is $90,000 for individuals and $180,000 for families or couples.
2. The Lifetime Health Cover Loading (LHC) – this is an additional 2% loading on top of your hospital cover premium for every year you (and/or your partner if applicable) have not had private hospital cover since the age of 30. If you were born before 1 July 1934, you are exempt from LHC.
What I get with extras
Extras Cover helps you pay for everyday health services that aren’t claimable under Medicare that assist in overall health maintenance.
Basic extras cover helps pay for your dentist, optical, chiropractic, acupuncture and naturopathy.
Mid-range cover offers more back on a broader range of services such as remedial massage, podiatry/orthotics, and pharmacy benefits.
Premium cover offers the full range of services covered with higher benefits (up to 80% of cost) for consultation including generous yearly limits.
What I get with hospital cover
Hospital cover makes accessing the private hospital system affordable. Half of all operations today are conducted in private hospitals, and you get the following important benefits:
1. You can be treated at your convenience, and avoid being put on a public hospital waiting list. Waiting lists in Public hospital are based on how urgent your treatment is determined. You could wait more that what is clinically recommended for elective surgery; sometimes longer than 6 or even 12 months. The types of hospital treatments included on your cover vary depending on your choice of Basic, Mid-range or Premium covers.
2. You will have greater control in being able to choose your own doctor or specialist for treatment, and the location of that treatment. In a public hospital, there is no guarantee that a doctor or specialist is available at the time of your treatment, or that the same doctor will oversee the post recovery period.
3. Depending on your circumstances, you may be exempt from paying The Medicare Levy Surcharge, which is further 1% of your taxable income (in addition to the 1.5% Medicare levy) payable by people who do not take out private health insurance;
4. To avoid paying a Lifetime Health Cover loading, take out a private health insurance hospital policy before 1 July following your 31st birthday.