Using Your Cover

How do I pay for my Overseas Visitors Cover?

When you apply for your Overseas Visitor Cover you’ll need to pay for your first month immediately (by credit card). You can then choose how often you want your regular payments to be. This can be each week, fortnight, month, half year or year.

If you’re already in Australia when you get your cover you can choose to make your regular payments with a credit card or direct debit from your Australian bank account.

If you’re outside Australia when you get your cover – and activate it online when you arrive – you’ll need to make your regular payments by direct debit from your Australian bank account. If you want to use a credit card you’ll need to call our Overseas Visitors Helpline on 13 68 42 or visit your nearest HCF location to activate your cover.

How can I find a regular doctor (GP)?

In Australia, a regular doctor (known as a General Practitioner or ‘GP’) will probably be the first person you’ll see if you have a health issue. HCF has a large network of GPs.

If you see a GP from the HCF network, your insurance should cover the full cost of your visit. It’s much easier to use a GP from the HCF network as you won’t need to submit a claim form or save your receipts. It’ll also save you money. You’ll just need to show your HCF membership card when you’re there.

If you visit a GP that isn’t part of the HCF network, there may be a cost to you.

To find a GP near you from the HCF network, call our Overseas Visitors Helpline on 13 68 42.

How can I find a specialist doctor?

If you need to see a specialist doctor (outside of hospital) you’ll need a referral from a GP. Depending on what the specialist charges, there may be a cost to you.
If you need to go to hospital for treatment, choosing a specialist from the HCF network can reduce your costs. Ask the doctor if your HCF Overseas Visitors insurance will cover the entire cost of your treatment, or if there’ll be any other costs you’ll need to pay. To find a specialist in the HCF network, call our Overseas Visitors Helpline on 13 68 42 or go to the Healthshare website.

How can I find extras providers in the HCF network?

Using a provider from the HCF Extras network will also reduce your costs. You may also be able to claim on the spot. Call one of our friendly advisors on 13 68 42 to find:

  • dentists
  • optometrists
  • physiotherapists
  • chiropractors
  • osteopaths
  • podiatrists.

What’s the HCF hospital network?

We have agreements with most private hospitals around Australia. If you visit a hospital in our network it can help reduce your costs, or gap, (apart from your excess if you have one) for treatment or services that are covered by your HCF Overseas Visitors Cover. 

If you decide to go to a private hospital that isn’t in our network, or a public hospital, you may have significant extra costs. Please ask the hospital what your treatment will cost before you’re treated, so you can understand what your gap payment will be. 

You can avoid these extra costs if you go to a private hospital in the HCF network.

For more information call our Overseas Visitors Helpline on 13 68 42 (option 2).

 

How can I find hospitals in the HCF network?

To find hospitals in the HCF network go to Participating hospitals.

Can I go to a hospital that isn’t in the HCF network?

You can, but it’s important to know that if you’re treated in a hospital HCF doesn’t have an agreement with you may have significant extra costs (gap).

This includes going to a public hospital, even for emergency treatment (depending on your level of cover). 

If you decide to go to a private hospital that isn’t in our network, or a public hospital, please ask what your treatment will cost before you’re treated, so you can understand what your gap payment will be.

What’s the difference between public and private hospitals?

Public hospitals

Public hospitals provide free, or reduced cost, treatment to Australian residents and visitors who are from one of the countries that has a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement (RHCA) with Australia.

If you’re able to access free, or reduced cost treatment, through an RHCA, you won’t be able to choose when or where you’re treated (and you may have to wait a long time, depending on the treatment you need). You also won’t be able to choose your preferred doctor.

If you go to a private hospital that isn’t in the HCF network, or public hospital as a private patient, you’ll probably be able to choose your doctor, but you won’t be covered by the Australian government for the cost of your treatment. That means you’re likely to have pay extra costs (gap). 

You can avoid extra costs if you go to a private hospital in the HCF network

If you decide to go to a private hospital that isn’t in our network, or a public hospital, please ask what your treatment will cost before you’re treated, so you can understand what your gap payment will be. 

For more information call our Overseas Visitors Helpline on 13 68 42 (option 2).

 

Private hospitals

By going to a private hospital in the HCF network you can avoid paying extra costs for your hospital stay (for treatments covered by your Overseas Visitors Cover).