What you should know about the private health insurance reforms

What you should know about the private health insurance reforms

Last updated: 28 March 2019

Confused about your private health insurance? With more than half the population having private health insurance, many struggle to understand what they get in return from the thousands of dollars they pay in premiums each year.

If you’re weighing up your private health insurance cover, here’s a summary of what the upcoming annual reforms will include:

A new system aimed at making private health insurance easier to understand is being introduced from the 1st of April, as part of the annual health insurance reforms. Distinct product tiers (Gold, Silver, Bronze and Basic) are being created, with the Department of Health stating that the new categories will give consumers greater certainty about the services covered by each type of private hospital cover to help make comparison simpler.

As well as the new tier system, consumers will be able to reduce their premiums by taking out a policy with a higher excess. An excess is the fixed amount paid if you make a claim with your private health insurance company.Excess caps will increase from $500 to $750 for singles and from $1000 to $1500 for couples/families. Younger people may also benefit with insurers being able to offer discounts of up to 10% off their premiums, depending on how old you are when the discounts are introduced.

If you already have health insurance, it may stay in its current policy until 1 April 2020, by which point everyone will have a policy under the new tier structure. As policies are moved from the old system to the new tiered structure, you should take the time to understand if your level of cover has changed and use the transition as an opportunity to reassess your level of cover to see if it still meets your needs.

Read more on how you can start saving on your private health insurance today!