What is private health insurance?

Private health insurance can help pay for health care costs that Medicare doesn't cover, such as dental and physiotherapy. But how much and what it covers depends on the individual policy. It also allows you to be treated in the hospital as a private patient.

What are the benefits of private health insurance?

The benefits of private health insurance will depend on your own individual circumstances and whether you require it and all the extras it offers. Relying on Medicare alone can sometimes mean longer wait times and limited availability to certain practitioners, while private patients aren't waitlisted and if hospital care is required then more comfortable accommodation will be given.

There are also certain tax time benefits, such as private health insurance rebates with the total amount that is reimbursed based on your single or family’s total taxable income.

You can also avoid the Medicare levy surcharge (MLS), which is a tax penalty for Australian high-income earners without private hospital coverage who earn a certain taxable income. MLS starts when you earn more than $90,000 or a couple/family’s income are more than $180,000.

Private health insurance can cover a wide range of extras that Medicare doesn't, including podiatry, physiotherapy, dental, optical and remedial massage among others.

How much does private health insurance cost and what to look out for

The cost generally increases year-to-year, so it's wise to review your policy and compare it to others, making sure you’re getting the best deal. Make sure you assess your needs and what things you'd like to be covered under your insurance plan and shop around so you can gauge other options. Before you commit, read through the T&Cs to ensure they cover what you want and stay aware of any changes made within your plan.

Top 10 Australian Private Health Insurers 2022:

  1. Medibank

  2. Bupa

  3. HCF - Hospital Contributions Fund of Australia

  4. NIB - Newcastle Industrial Benefits

  5. HBF - Hospital Benefit Fund

  6. Australian Unity

  7. Teachers Health

  8. GMHBA - Geelong Medical and Hospital Benefits Association

  9. Defence Health

  10. CBHS - Commonwealth Bank Health Society

For more information about private health insurance click here. If you have any questions or are after support, have a chat to one of our Sonder team members who can help.


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Information sourced from: Health.gov, ACCC, Compare the Market and Insurance Business Australia.

Photo by Caroline LM on Unsplash

All content in Sonder's Help Centre is created and published for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health professional.

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