How does health insurance work in Australia?
Health insurance is a policy that you take out to cover yourself in the event of illness, injury, or other unforeseen health circumstances.While the Australian public health system (Medicare) covers most Australian residents for health care, it does not cover everything.
Health insurance comes in 3 types of coverage; Hospital, Extras, and Ambulance.
When you are admitted as a private patient in either a public or a private hospital, Hospital insurance covers your hospital and medical expenses. Whereas, Extras cover (or general treatment cover) provides coverage for services such as: dental examinations and treatment, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, eye therapy, chiropractic services, podiatry, psychology services, acupuncture, glasses and contact lenses, hearing aids and other appliances.
In Queensland and Tasmania, emergency ambulance services are provided free by the State Government. New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory provide free ambulance cover for pensioners and low income earners.
While Medicare covers some health related circumstances, private health insurance can cover all possible contingencies, depending on your level of cover.
Visit the private health insurance website for more information.