Private health insurance premium increase in 2019

The Federal Government’s reforms to make private health insurance simpler and more affordable have delivered an average premium increase of 3.25 per cent from 1 April 2019.

The premium change will see a single person pay an average of $59.28 more per year and a family on average will pay $122.20 more per year.

The range of increases is from 1.64 per cent for the Westfund Limited, the lowest increase, to 4.94 per cent for Navy Health Ltd, the highest increase.

The increase for each fund is tabled below.

This is the smallest increase since 2001 and lower than the 4.1 per cent inflation for medical and hospital services this year.

In addition, from 1 April 2019 insurers will also be able to offer youth based discounts of up to 10 per cent for 18 to 29 year olds.

Changes from April 2018 have provided greater access to mental health services by allowing people to upgrade their hospital cover without serving a waiting period. Additionally since 1 April people have been able to upgrade their existing insurance policies to access psychiatric services without serving a waiting period and have claimed more than $16.8 million in benefits.

New Gold, Silver, Bronze and Basic product tiers will be introduced for hospital insurance products from early 2019. The reforms will make private health insurance simpler and more affordable and make it clearer on what is and isn’t covered in their policies.

The Government allocates around $6.4 billion of the revenue it collects every year to the private health insurance rebate.

There are 37 private health insurance funds operating in Australia. Consumers may shop around to get the best deal for themselves and their families. Independent, commission-free advice on current health insurance products offered in Australia is available online on the Private Health Insurance Ombudsman website

For more information on the premium change, see the Department of Health website

Premium increases by insurer by year

InsurerAverage increase with rate protection (%)
ACA Health Benefits Fund Limited5.89%5.78%4.96%6.19%4.70%2.72%3.23%
Australian Unity Health Limited5.23%6.62%6.26%5.05%4.46%3.89%3.35%
BUPA HI Pty Ltd5.80%6.35%5.59%5.69%4.90%3.99%2.99%
CBHS Corporate Health Pty Ltd    2.98%2.38%3.68%
CBHS Health Fund Limited4.59%5.61%6.58%5.92%3.29%2.73%3.67%
Cessnock District Health Benefits Fund Limited5.55%5.36%6.99%6.19%6.57%6.40%3.90%
CUA Health Limited4.62%5.47%6.35%8.95%4.97%3.29%4.19%
Defence Health Limited4.02%5.34%5.62%5.48%5.51%5.97%4.50%
Doctors’ Health Fund Pty Ltd, The3.78%4.23%3.98%3.76%3.54%2.28%2.94%
Emergency Services Health Pty Ltd     3.36%3.25%
GMHBA Limited5.23%5.94%6.43%5.44%4.94%4.34%3.31%
Grand United Corporate Health Limited3.23%3.46%4.32%4.26%4.11%2.84%1.80%
HBF Health Limited3.75%3.72%5.96%4.94%5.96%3.75%1.94%
Health Care Insurance Ltd3.97%5.34%6.12%6.90%6.06%8.90%5.53%
Health Insurance Fund of Australia Limited4.47%2.98%4.49%6.55%7.99%5.35%4.77%
Health Partners Limited3.40%3.14%5.76%7.14%5.10%3.95%3.18% Pty Ltd5.76%6.13%6.81%8.81%8.53%5.87%3.96%
Hospitals Contribution Fund of Australia Ltd, The5.74%6.89%6.57%5.42%3.65%3.39%3.20%
Latrobe Health Services Limited6.21%5.98%6.15%5.52%4.49%4.25%3.85%
Medibank Private Limited6.20%6.49%6.59%5.64%4.60%3.88%3.30%
Mildura District Hospital Fund Ltd5.75%3.65%6.14%6.74%5.95%5.68%3.89%
MO Health Pty Ltd     3.90%4.45%
National Health Benefits Australia Pty Ltd5.76%4.50%6.26%5.28%5.41%3.97%3.62%
Navy Health Ltd4.80%4.53%4.50%5.50%4.94%3.94%4.94%
NIB Health Funds Ltd6.50%7.99%6.55%5.55%4.48%3.93%3.38%
Nurses & Midwives Health Pty Ltd     3.22%5.91%
Peoplecare Health Limited6.81%5.82%6.08%4.38%5.09%4.19%4.90%
Phoenix Health Fund Limited5.47%6.52%6.48%5.72%5.93%4.19%3.26%
Police Health Limited4.09%4.81%4.48%4.81%4.63%3.72%3.58%
Queensland Country Health Fund Ltd4.59%5.85%4.77%4.91%5.15%4.39%3.95%
Queensland Teachers’ Union Health Fund Limited4.50%4.50%6.36%7.15%7.30%4.40%3.18%
Railway & Transport Health Fund Ltd4.29%4.80%6.17%5.61%5.54%4.47%3.36%
Reserve Bank Health Society Ltd4.31%4.39%4.88%5.37%5.00%3.97%3.73%
St Luke’s Medical and Hospital Benefits Association3.96%6.33%6.27%5.89%4.99%4.23%3.56%
Teachers Federation Health Ltd4.10%5.42%6.86%4.97%4.96%2.84%3.94%
Transport Health Pty Ltd6.77%5.90%4.84%6.49%4.93%5.16%3.41%
Westfund Limited3.48%3.25%7.92%5.94%4.96%3.43%1.64%

If you can pay your health insurance premiums in advance, some insurers will offer a rate protection. With rate protections, if premium rates are increased within the period you have already paid for your insurance, you will not have to pay increased rates until that period ends. If you do not have rate protection, the insurer will ask you to pay the balance owing on the new rates, or reduce the length of time your advance payment covers.

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