As Australia’s largest not-for-profit health fund, we’re here to protect the health of you and your loved ones in good times and bad. Which is why during the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve provided members with over $100 million in ongoing benefits and support, including the deferral for all members of the scheduled April premium increase until 6 October 2020 and financial relief for more than 60,000~ members doing it tough.
During the pandemic, we’ve paid out over half a billion~ in hospital and extras benefits, and found safer, more convenient ways for members to continue accessing quality health care from home.
The extraordinary profits predicted by some at the outset of the pandemic have not been realised by HCF. The medical procedures our members had deferred during the shutdown are still needed, with private hospitals working hard to clear the backlog.
The over $100 million in ongoing financial and health support for members far outweighs any modest claims savings we’re likely to see. If, over time, we do realise a greater reduction in claims, we’re committed to returning any savings to our members.
WHY IS THE INCREASE HAPPENING?
We strive to keep the cost of your health cover as low as possible and as a not-for-profit health fund, we’d prefer to have no increase at all. However, from 6 October 2020 your premium will change as we balance rising healthcare costs and the amount we pay out in claims, making sure we're well-placed to continue delivering value-for-money, high quality health cover.
There are three main reasons for the rising cost of private health insurance:
- More people are going to hospital and accessing more health services each year.
- More people are living with chronic health problems, which are costly to manage.
- Advances in health technologies and treatments offer better outcomes but often cost more.
For the last financial year, 2018–2019, we paid $2.4 billion for members' hospital and extras benefits. Three of the most common hospital treatments we covered were:
- knee replacement – over 4,100 members had this procedure
- hip replacement – over 3,000 members had this procedure
- gastroscopy/colonoscopy – almost 79,000 members had this procedure.
We’ve got your back in good times and bad. And in times like these, we’re as committed as ever to showing our members a level of care that’s uncommon.
REDUCING YOUR OUT-OF-POCKET COSTS
We’re passionate about reducing your out-of-pocket costs when you use your hospital or extras cover. That’s why, we launched our handy participating provider search tool to help you save on medical costs by choosing from a wide network of participating no-gap or known-gap specialists.
We also provide guidance on preparing for a hospital admission and what you can claim for with our Preparing for Hospital pages. They feature a cost indicator tool that outlines the typical costs, potential out-of-pocket expenses, and the difference your choice of doctor and hospital can make.
HOW WE’RE WORKING TO LOWER THE COST OF HEALTH INSURANCE PRODUCTS
We look at the big picture and use our resources, networks and influence to help make health care more affordable for Australians by:
- driving Australian government reform and working directly with the Department of Health and Minister for Health to influence reform to lower healthcare costs and the average premium increases
- offering our More for You extras providers, so eligible members can get 100% back on extras such as dental, optical, podiatry and physiotherapy when visiting a provider in our network+
- supplying a second opinion service to eligible members from a network of medical specialists at no extra cost**
- investing in health services like the HCF Research Foundation and HCF Catalyst. We invest and support these health businesses to drive innovation with the aim of creating more effective and efficient health care.
GET IN TOUCH
Do you have more questions? We understand there’s a lot to wrap your head around. Have a read of our FAQs on premium changes.
Or our friendly team of health cover experts are always happy to help, so give us a call on 13 13 34. We’re here for you seven days a week.
Find out more
Frequently asked questions
Read FAQs on your premium changes.
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.
MANAGE YOUR HEALTH
Programs and services that empower you to live a healthier life.
~Figures current for the period 1 March 2020 to 28 July 2020.
#Available with HCF contracted providers, subject to member location and hospital cover. Waiting periods apply.
+Depends on your level of cover and annual limits.
**Must have had hospital cover for 12 months and a specialist consultation to use this service. Excludes Accident Only Basic cover. Conditions apply.
++89% compared to 86% across the industry. Calculated based on the average of the past 5 years, sourced from APRA, Statistics: Quarterly Private Health Insurance Statistics, June 2019; APRA, Statistics: Private Health Insurance Operations Report 2015-18, June 2018.
^Roy Morgan Net Trust Survey 2018 & 2019