Blog by Christel Dajcz, Registered Migration Agent (MARN) 1066568 at AMVL Migrations.
Many people choose to pay for private health insurance. Private health insurance funds cover costs for many treatments as a private patient in private or public hospitals and can include some services that Medicare does not cover, such as dental care, most optical care and (depending on the state you settle in) ambulance transport. If you wish to purchase private health insurance, it is important to compare different funds, particularly as the cost and type of cover can vary widely.
When selecting a health insurance policy, you will need to consider a number of important issues:
- What is covered? – does the policy meet your immediate and future needs.
- What is not covered? – do you have any existing health conditions or plans to start a family.
- What are the waiting times before you can claim – sometimes these can be waived, particularly during promotional periods.
- What extras can you claim and what are your limits? – if you do need optical or remedial therapies cover, is the limit too low?
The main surcharge that can affect new migrants is the Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) loading surcharge. This means that if you purchase hospital cover after the 1st of July following your 31st birthday, you will have to pay the Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) loading on top of your premium. This is a 2% loading on top of your premium for every year you are aged over 30.
New migrants have until the later of 1 July following your 31st birthday or the 12 month anniversary of your registration for full Medicare benefits (i.e. when you are eligible for a blue or green Medicare card) to take out private hospital cover without incurring a Lifetime Health Cover loading.
There are a number of websites that can assist you with selecting a policy by comparing a range of providers, their coverage, and the costs involved. Compare the Market also has a handy ‘Health-ucator’ tool to introduce people to Health Insurance and guide them through how insurance works and what Australians consider important at each stage of their lives. To access the Health-ucator, click here.
For expert and friendly Australian migration advice, contact the team of Registered Migration Agents at AMVL Migrations today.