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Health cover: why it’s important to have cover (and stay covered)

Your health cover is a valuable asset in your quest for the best possible health.

Doctor checking young girls heart beat with a stethoscope.

Investing in your health is one of the best investments you can make. In the event you get hurt or fall ill and need medical treatment, your private health cover can help you get the treatment you need, and pay benefits towards the cost of your treatment.

But private health insurance isn’t just important for returning you to good health; your health cover is also a very valuable asset in your quest to achieving your very best possible health.

The advantage of private hospital cover

If you are injured or unwell and need to be admitted to hospital, your private health insurance pays benefits towards hospital accommodation, intensive care, and medical services you receive when you’re treated in hospital as a private inpatient.

With private hospital insurance, you have the option of choosing the hospital where you would like to be treated as well as the specialists that will attend to you, giving you peace of mind and more control over the care that you receive.

In the public system, you might have to wait weeks, months or even years on a waiting list before you can receive treatment for your injury or illness. But with private health cover you can be treated as soon as you and your specialist are ready.

Medibank has arrangements with most private hospitals and day surgeries in Australia, so members can generally get better value for covered treatments than if they were to go to a non-Members’ Choice hospital.

If a hospital visit is on the cards, call us on 132 331 to get help finding a Members’ Choice hospital. We can also help you to understand the questions to ask your specialist about minimising your out-of-pocket expenses.

Staying healthy with Extras cover

Whilst your private hospital cover helps support you for admissions to hospital, your Extras cover can help you stay on top of your health and help avoid illness and injury in the first place.

A wide range of allied health services are covered under the banner of Extras services, including; dental, optical, physio, podiatry and many more.

You can also generally enjoy better value for money if you visit an Extras provider that is in our Members’ Choice network*, where we’ve negotiated capped pricing, discounts at retailers, guaranteed percentage return for certain treatments and generally lower out-of-pocket costs.

You can log in to My Medibank to find out what Extras services your cover includes, or give us call on 132 331 and we can check you have the level of cover you need for your health needs.

*compared to a non-Members’ Choice Extras provider.

Avoid paying for Lifetime Health Cover loading

Lifetime Health Cover loading is an initiative of the Federal Government designed to encourage Australians to take out their own private hospital cover. For those without hospital cover beyond 1 July following their 31st birthday, they stand to pay an additional 2% loading on premiums for each year they go without hospital cover (for up to 10 years).

Read more about Lifetime Health Cover here.

Avoid paying the Medicare Levy Surcharge

If you don’t have private hospital cover and you earn above a certain income, you may pay a Medicare Levy Surcharge.  The surcharge can be anywhere between 1 to 1.5% of your income (depending on your income bracket). For example, if you are single and earn over $90,000 without hospital cover, you could have 1% levied on your income.

Here’s some more info about Medicare Levy Surcharge.

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