Private health insurance – why are they so different?
Health funds are not all the same. Some offer cover for a wider range of treatments and procedures than others. And for any particular treatment, the rebate (what the fund will pay) can vary widely between funds or levels of cover with the same fund. And different business models affect premiums as well as the rebate amounts. There are large corporations, government-backed funds, members’ own and even restricted member funds.
Doing you research means you’ll pay for cover that is appropriate for you including either ‘pay now’ on higher premiums or ‘pay later’ for higher gap payments following treatments.
This site can be a good place to start your research: https://www.privatehealth.gov.au/
Or head to Choice for their take on health insurance
Members’ own health insurance funds
Members’ own funds – or not-for-profit funds – are run for the benefit of members not a corporation or shareholders. Many have ‘no excess’ hospital cover which means one less thing to worry about if/when hospital admission is required.
And most claim to offer generous rebates for Extras such as dentistry, physiotherapy and optical etc. Being not-for-profit, they can achieve this without affecting their company ‘bottom line’.
Restricted insurance funds
The restricted funds are a type of members’ own fund and include Police Health, Teachers Health Fund, Nurses Midwives Health and Emergency Services Health. Similar to the NFPs above, they claim to look after the profession’s work force with favorable premiums and rebates.