Australians with private health insurance are being encouraged to research the costs of medical procedures before committing to a hospital or health care centre.
A report released by Private Healthcare Australia (PHA) has revealed large price differences in identical procedures in hospitals across the nation.
For example, the PHA data showed that the cost of a same day colonoscopy can range from around $1,200 to more than $1,900.
The large price differences can result in patients having to cover huge, unexpected gap payments. A gap payment occurs when a doctor or hospital charges above what your private health care will cover, meaning you are left paying the extra.
In order for patients to manage their health care costs, Informed Financial Consent is crucial, according to PHA Chief Executive Dr Michael Armitage.
Informed Financial Consent is the procedure hospitals and doctors use to supply patients with billing information. The patient can then contact their health insurance provider to find out if there will be a gap payment and, if so, how much it will be.
If you are worried you're not getting the best deals from your private health insurance, speak with one of the knowledgeable team at HICA. We can offer unbiased health insurance comparisons and expert advice to help ensure you're getting the cover you need.