Ongoing increases to family health insurance premiums are outstripping inflation, encumbering those households already struggling with rising living costs.
Across Australia, the average increase in hospital cover was 6.4 per cent, while extras cover rose by 3.3. per cent.
NSW was hit the hardest in the recent rise in premiums, with hospital cover climbing by 7.32 per cent and extras up by by 3.64 per cent.
Private Health Insurance Administration Council's chief executive officer Sean Gath said "medical inflation is traditionally higher than mainstream inflation."
Mr Gath explained the current premium prices 'reflect market conditions' but encouraged Australians to compare policies and companies to find competitively-priced cover.
If you are concerned about the rising health insurance premiums, there are a few simple steps you can take to reduce costs.
• By increasing the level of excess or co-payment on your hospital cover you can reduce your premium. The excess is an amount you agree to pay to cover accommodation costs if you are ever admitted to hospital. The higher the excess the lower your premium. A co-payment is a daily amount of money you agree to pay the hospital for a hospital stay before benefits are payable.
• Pay your health insurance premiums by monthly direct debit – this can attract a 4 per cent direct debit discount.
• Review your family health insurance policy each year to evaluate whether you are receiving exactly what you need and want from your cover.
If you have any further queries about increases to your health insurance premium, speak with HICA today. Our expert staff offer unbiased health insurance comparisons to help you choose the right cover for your family's budget and it’s free and without obligation