Private health insurance

Australia has a bit of a hybrid model for funding health cover, made up of public and private funding.

Medicare is Australia’s universal health insurance scheme. It guarantees all Australians access to a wide range of health and hospital services at low or no cost. It is the safety net that ensures every Australian has a minimum level of health cover. To fund Medicare, everyone pays a levy of 2% of their taxable income.

The issue with this safety net is that long waiting lists often plague it. If you need a hip replacement, you may have to wait for years for it on the public waiting list. 

On the other hand, private health insurance can fund the gap for the health care costs that Medicare does not cover. With the appropriate private health insurance, that hip replacement can now be done without waiting. If you can afford it, private health insurance makes sense and can reduce the burden on the public health system.

To encourage Australians to take up and maintain private health insurance, the government provides a rebate of up to 30% of the cost. They also have penalties for people who choose to take up private health insurance in later life. To keep your premiums low, make sure you have private health insurance in place before turning 30 years old and maintain it for life.
Sounds like a system that makes more sense than the US system.
2021-03-03 15:33:11