Frequently asked questions
- Why are health insurance premiums reviewed every year?
- When will I hear about my new premium?
- Can I lock in my current premium?
- How does HCF compare to other funds in terms of premium increases?
- My premium increased more than the national average percentage. Why did this happen?
- Why have my premiums gone up, but my benefits haven’t increased?
- Why has my premium gone up even though I make few, or no claims?
- What is HCF doing to keep my health insurance as affordable as possible?
- Why is the Australian Government rebate on private health insurance decreasing as a percentage?
- Why are premium increases higher than CPI?
- Where can I learn more about how private health insurance works?
- Unhappy with your premium review?
- I have more questions – who can I speak to?
Advances in health care technology, the increasing use of health services and changes to the Australian Government rebate on private health insurance are just some of the reasons why premiums go up. For more information on the reasons and what we’re doing to make health care affordable and accessible for our members, visit why premiums go up.
Yes you can by paying up to 18 months in advance, provided we receive your payment before 1 April 2019. The deadlines for each payment method are below.
|Payment method||Pre-payment deadline|
|Direct debit – credit card or bank account||27 March 2019|
|BPAY – hcf.com.au/bpay||27 March 2019
|Phone 13 14 39 or online
|31 March 2019
30 March 2019
This year, our average premium increase is our lowest for 17 years. The cost of each health insurance product is reviewed individually, so the change to your premium may differ from the average across all products.
To address affordability and deliver value, we're focused on keeping premium increases to a minimum. Being not for profit, we’re committed to giving you value for money and delivering a higher percentage of premiums back in benefits.
The Australian Government calculates the national average based on the premium increases it approves for all Australian health funds.
Because your premium increase relates to your chosen level of HCF cover, it may be different to the national average (or the HCF average). Your premium increase reflects the balance between managing member payments against the claims we pay out for all members on your level of cover in your state.
Each year we review the benefits we pay to health care providers such as hospitals, doctors and extras providers, like dentists. Due to the prevalence of chronic diseases, an aging population, newer and more expensive technologies and increased treatment options, the overall spend on benefits is increasing. It’s our responsibility to ensure your premiums allow us to provide the level of health cover you need and expect.
Your premium increase reflects the balance between managing premiums we receive versus claims we pay out to members on your level of cover. Premiums increase to ensure we have enough funds to cover the benefits we expect to pay to members on your level of cover in the coming 12 months.
Private health insurance in Australia is 'community-rated'. This means you pay the same premium for the same level of cover as everyone else in your state, regardless of your age or health status, or the number of claims you make. This helps make private health insurance more accessible for everyone.
We work closely with participating hospitals, doctors and extras providers to help you reduce your out-of-pocket expenses. We also provide advice on preparing for a hospital admission and what you can and can’t claim for.
Our Preparing for Hospital tool explains how a range of common hospital procedures work. We cover what questions to ask, what to expect in hospital, and what aftercare you may need. It also features a cost indicator, which outlines the typical costs, potential out-of-pocket expenses, and the difference your choice of doctor and hospital can make.
Through our More for You extras providers, you could get 100% back on extras like dental, optical and physiotherapy.
Each year on 1 April, the government compares the national average of health fund premium increases to the standard cost of living in Australia (known as Consumer Price Index (CPI)). If the average premium increase is greater than CPI, which it generally is, the Australian Government rebate percentage that members are entitled to is reduced.
This is because the cost of providing quality health care is generally increasing faster than the cost of other consumer goods. More money is being spent on health across the sector with total health expenditure in Australia increasing by 57% in the last decade.
We live in a time where our population is ageing, and has access to better quality health care than ever before. We’re living longer, and seeing better health outcomes, but this comes at a cost.
Find out more
WHY HEALTH COVER PREMIUMS GO UP
Find out why this happens and what we’re doing to make health care more affordable and accessible.
UNDERSTANDING THE COSTS
How to get the most out of your private health insurance.
PRIVATE HEALTH CARE EXPLAINED
What you need to know about the private system.
We’re here to help.