How to Compare Private Health Insurance
One of the best ways to slash your annual expenses is to compare private health insurance and get a better deal. Many people keep the health insurance they’ve had for years because it seems too hard to switch. As a result, they end up paying more than they should for cover that doesn’t suit them.
Does that sound like you? First of all, there’s never a bad time to shop around and see what’s out there. The best thing is, Billy Explores loves to compare private health insurance policies and save money for hardworking Aussies!
Consider What You Need from Private Health Insurance
The first thing to do when you compare private health insurance deals is work out exactly what you need. There’s certainly a whole range of things to consider:
- Do you need singles, couples or family cover?
- Do you want extras cover?
- How much excess do you want to pay for hospital claims?
- Will you be starting a family soon?
- Are there waiting periods?
- What types of extras do you really need?
- Do you just want basic cover, or a more comprehensive policy?
- What can you afford in your budget?
All of these considerations will play a part in the type of cover you choose. Make sure you know exactly what you want, because it will save you money in the long run. Keep reading to find out more about the things you need to know before you compare private health insurance.
Understand the Types of Private Health Insurance
To best compare private health insurance, you need to understand the different types of cover available. Let’s take a look at the different types of cover and what’s included.
Compare Private Health Insurance Hospital Cover
Hospital cover gives you peace of mind. If you need to go to hospital, you have more options than the public system provides. Some of the benefits of hospital cover include:
- No public hospital waiting lists.
- Choice of doctors and surgeons.
- Chance of a private hospital room.
- Cost of hospital stay is covered by insurance.
- Avoid Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) loading if you take out cover before age 31.
- Receive the Australian Government Private Health Insurance Rebate.
- Exempt from Medicare Levy Surcharge (MLS).
There’s four different levels of hospital cover – Basic, Bronze, Silver and Gold. When you compare hospital cover, make sure you check what’s included in the policy because you don’t want to pay for cover you don’t need.
Compare Private Health Insurance Extras Cover
Hospital cover doesn’t cover a lot of the smaller medical expenses we may incur more regularly. Consequently, you might like to add extras cover to your policy. Extras cover will provide a reimbursement for a number of medical services such as:
- Medical equipment/appliances
- Alternative and Natural therapies
- Chiropractic treatment
- Pharmaceuticals not covered by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
- Gym memberships and other health programs
Just like hospital cover, there’s different levels you can choose, so make sure you know what you’re paying for. You may only need the basics, so it doesn’t make sense to be paying for a range of services you’d never use.
Understand the Levels of Cover
Whether you compare private health insurance hospital cover or extras, there will be different levels of cover. You have some degree of control over what you’re covered for in most insurance policies.
The level of cover may affect the following:
- The amount of reimbursement for extras.
- The range of extras you’re entitled to claim for.
- Whether or not you’re guaranteed a private hospital room.
- If you can choose your preferred doctors or surgeons.
- Annual limits on certain extras categories.
- The types of surgeries and treatments you’re covered for.
- Whether you’re subject to waiting periods.
Health insurance policies have a wide range of benefits, but because all providers are different, you need to know exactly what you’re looking for. Choose a policy that really suits your needs now and into the future.
What are Waiting Periods?
A waiting period refers to the amount of time you may have to wait before accessing certain policy benefits. For instance, if you took out hospital cover today there may be a 6-month waiting period on claiming dental expenses.
Depending on your level of cover, you may be exempt from all waiting periods.
When you switch health insurance providers you won’t be subject to new waiting periods. That is, unless you’re choosing a higher level of cover with services you’ve not previously waited for.
What are Excess Payments?
Choosing an excess on your hospital cover can be a great way to reduce your monthly or annual premium. If you’re admitted to hospital, the excess is an amount you commit to pay up front. For example, if you have an excess of $300, that’s all you’ll pay for your hospital stay. Your insurance cover’s the rest, so you can recover without worrying about hospital bills.
The amount of excess you choose will directly affect your premium. A lower excess will mean paying a higher monthly premium. In contrast, a high excess payment will reduce your monthly cost.
A ‘co-payment’ is another form of excess. This is calculated on the number of nights you’re in hospital, rather than a lump sum.
How Do I Compare Private Health Insurance?
If you want to compare private health insurance, it’s as easy as clicking right here! Billy Explores wants to save money for Australians. A great way he’s found to do that is to compare private health insurance deals. All you’ll need to do is enter some information about the type of cover you’re looking for, and Billy does the rest. Don’t keep paying inflated prices for services you don’t need – let Billy Explores find you a better deal from our panel of health insurance providers.