On April 1, 2014, annual health insurance premiums will rise by an average of 6.2 per cent, which could put Australian households hundreds of dollars out of pocket this year.
The Australian government approved the increase on December 23, 2013, which will see individual private health insurance funds increase their premiums 3 per cent upwards.
Fortunately, there are a number of measures you can take to reduce the impact of these premium rises on your household expenses.
Pay in advance
Consider paying a full 12 months of premiums before April 1 each year.
Paying in advance will secure your premiums at the current rate. This also means you essentially delay having to pay the increased rate for up to 12 months.
Increase your excess or co-payments
Increasing your hospital excess or applying a co-payment can often decrease the premium charged by your health insurance provider.
This option is effective in reducing premiums but will mean you pay additional charges when you receive medical treatment.
Review what benefits you are using
It is important to regularly review your private health insurance policy, including any extras cover you may have.
If you find you are paying for benefits you are not using, there may be another, more suitable product on the market.
Review your health insurance policy
If you are unhappy with your policy’s premium increase, your current insurer or another provider may be able to offer you a cheaper alternative that still meets your needs.
Consider having a trusted broker make an independent review of your health cover and compare a number of different health funds on your behalf to find something more suitable.
If you would like more information or a private health insurance comparison, contact the team at HICA today.
By comparing health insurance policies, HICA can help you choose a product that suits your needs and budget.