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Health Insurance under 40

Health insurance can be tricky to navigate. With complicated jargon and unwieldy policies, sometimes it can seem easier to just forget the whole thing. But there’s always a chance you could become sick or injured, so here’s some information, just in case.

What is Private Health Insurance?
Private health insurance is a system in which, in return for payment of a yearly or monthly premium, you are financially covered for a portion of your medical expenses. This is an umbrella term used to describe the two types of cover you can get: hospital and extras. Each provider has different inclusions so make sure you check if your needs are covered. If you are part of a family who has private health insurance, you are normally covered as a dependent until you turn 25. After that, you are no longer covered and should consider getting your own.

What is hospital cover?
Hospital cover is for elective surgery (with reduced waiting periods). You can choose your own specialist and go to a private hospital. This is something to consider if you wish to get cosmetic surgery or plan to fall pregnant. Hospital cover is also handy if you suffer an illness or injury and do not wish to wait several months for surgery.

What is extras cover?
Extras cover is for items such as dental, optical and physiotherapy. The more inclusions you opt into, the more expensive the premium you pay. These can be bundled together depending on your needs. For example, if you are fairly active but don’t have any pre-existing medical conditions, you may consider getting just physio and dental.

What is Medicare?
Medicare is the government funded healthcare system. You are taxed 2% of your income and, in return, have access to subsidised treatments including (but not limited to) hospital costs, consultations with doctors, non-elective surgery and some procedures from dentists. What are not covered are therapies such as physio and speech therapy, most dental treatment, optical and cosmetic surgery.

What Will Happen If You Don’t Get Private Health Insurance?
If you don’t have private health insurance and become seriously sick or injured, you could suffer financial hardship. If you earn over a certain threshold and do not have private health insurance you will incur the ‘Medicare Levy Surcharge’. Additionally, if you get private health insurance after you turn 30 the government charges a Lifetime Health Cover loading, meaning you may end up paying more overall.

What is ambulance cover?
The callout fee for a ride in an ambulance can be incredibly high. Ambulance cover can be purchased quite cheaply through Ambulance Victoria, without having to take out private health insurance.

General Advice Warning:
This information does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Therefore you should firstly consider the appropriateness of this information and refer to the Terms and Conditions and Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) before acquiring a product. These documents are available by contacting us on 1300 654 166.