Jump to content

Penalising late comers to private health insurance


  • Please log in to reply
127 replies to this topic

#1 Rachaelxxx

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:42 AM

I've had private health insurance for years, purely for obstetrics reasons and this year I'm entering the work force full time and for the first time we can actually afford private health insurance for the whole family.

Some may argue that this should have been a priority, but to date we've been lucky not to have really needed private insurance for the girls and my husband.  My husband is 41 and will be penalised 11% for joining (2% premium for every year over 30).

I don't understand that logic, I think it's a bonus anytime anyone comes on board with private health insurance.  If anything I thought they would have been offering incentives for late comers and I know the government bought this legislation in, not private health insurance companies, but it doesn't make a lot of sense to me.

#2 PrincessPeach

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:48 AM

I think it may have something to do with the social thought process of older people = more health complaints.

Also I've come accross a number of people who are joining private health simply to have an operation or something done in the private secotr, becasue it's actually quicker from them to serve out the waiting periods then to wait in the public system.

Or they are joining to avoid paying medicare surcharge.

Edited by PrincessPeach, 24 January 2013 - 09:50 AM.


#3 ellebelle

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:51 AM

Very few of us claim for the hospital component before we are 40. There was an article recently, stats which I don't remember exactly, but something along the lines of claims being very skewed to those over 65. Basically, the govt has worked out a cut off where it is felt that we are contributing long enough to keep the system viable, and the line in the sand is 30. I'm in my early forties and except for obstretics have had no need for the cover either to date. It's not a "bonus" that others come later and then start claiming sooner - it's a drain.

#4 rosiebird

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:51 AM

It's quite simple economics. Your husband saved money by avoiding paying PHI while he was young and statistically less likely to need it. Now he is older and more of a liability to the PHI company, they need to recoup the costs.

#5 sandgropergirl

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:52 AM

Pretty straight forward. If you had health insurance for the years and not used it you have earned the insurer money. You now want to enter at a time when it's likely you will cost more than you pay. Same as insurance for young drivers costing more than experienced ones. Young people have mre bungles. Older people cost more in th health system

#6 Lolpigs

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:54 AM

It was done by Howard to force people out of the public system under the guise of doing something positive.

This was instead of putting more money into public hospitals.

There isn't much other reasoning behind it. Obstetrics is a joke because of the massive out of pockets that you have, which means you are financially better off using the public system.

#7 bebe12

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:02 AM

Hi,

I wish you could get out of it if you could prove that you could not have afforded it before you join.

Ie before i remarried i was working parttime and studying and getting not even a $1 a day from exh for DD. During those 2 years of 31-32 i could not afford it, but now am stuck with surcharge, as apposed to people earning fulltime wage.

I am now on Maternity leave and for last 5 years have paid PHI, as i believe it is good for our family, but some individuals aren't earning enough to fork out cover for something they will likely not use. especially single parents.

#8 YodaTheWrinkledOne

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:05 AM

QUOTE (ellebelle @ 24/01/2013, 09:51 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Very few of us claim for the hospital component before we are 40. There was an article recently, stats which I don't remember exactly, but something along the lines of claims being very skewed to those over 65. Basically, the govt has worked out a cut off where it is felt that we are contributing long enough to keep the system viable, and the line in the sand is 30. I'm in my early forties and except for obstretics have had no need for the cover either to date. It's not a "bonus" that others come later and then start claiming sooner - it's a drain.

this

QUOTE
It's quite simple economics. Your husband saved money by avoiding paying PHI while he was young and statistically less likely to need it. Now he is older and more of a liability to the PHI company, they need to recoup the costs.


and pretty much this.  And people were given HEAPS of warning that they would be penalised if they didn't have private hospital cover by the time they are 30.  So it shouldn't come as a surprise.  Choose not to have private hospital cover after the age of 30, then you are choosing to penalised if you decide to sign up when you are older and are just going to cost the insurer a lot of money.

DH & I signed up at 30 - cheapest policy we could lay our hands on.  We did it to avoid being hit with a surcharge later in life.  Signing up when you are in your mid-50's whacks a big penalty on to the premium.

#9 Percoriel

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:08 AM

It sucks for people like us who have been out of Australia for most of our 30's and now into our 40's. We'll be penalised for not being in Australia. Which sucks really.

#10 wannabe30

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:14 AM

QUOTE (Percoriel @ 24/01/2013, 11:08 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It sucks for people like us who have been out of Australia for most of our 30's and now into our 40's. We'll be penalised for not being in Australia. Which sucks really.

I notified my health fund before we left, maintained insurance in my country of residence while I was out of Australia, and then rejoined my Aussie fund when I returned. They treated it as though I had never left.

#11 Rachaelxxx

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:16 AM

I guess that makes sense, but the reality is we honestly could not have afforded private health insurance for the whole family in our 30's and it wasn't a surprise, I knew the legislation, but it certainly is making it harder and harder for the average Australian to afford private health insurance.

Edited by Rachaelxxx, 24 January 2013 - 10:18 AM.


#12 Rachaelxxx

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:17 AM

Double post, sorry

Edited by Rachaelxxx, 24 January 2013 - 10:18 AM.


#13 sandgropergirl

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:19 AM

QUOTE (economist99 @ 24/01/2013, 11:17 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's very fair. over 85 yo's soak up over 85% of the budget. If you dont believe this you haven;t been in a hospital lately, or checked out the heavily PBS subsidised medicine cabinet of an over 60yo. Govt provided statins, blood press, etc etc even viagra - many of which are on the HCC cost of $5 - some even onsell online for the real price of $80-800 for basic meds.

We have an unsustainable health care system and the reality is we have to work out how to provide for the future...and we cannot keep on being so generous.


Exactly

#14 choccy2

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:22 AM

In the past I had PHI for all of us which I organised well prior to 30.

This was held for many years. At one point we went through some financial hardship and had to put it on hold with the intention of resuming it as soon as possible.

But then once the ex left  I struggled to find work (after supporting the ex's own business dreams) I could not afford to rejoin it  and the children and I had no insurance.

When it comes to choosing between literally feeding and educating your children and PHI - the 'choice' part is hardly a choice.

When I found work I was keen to rejoin, but by then was well passed 30 and had been out too long to avoid the penalty for joining again and that on top of it being an expensive product anyway, I'm resigned to not being able to afford it.

As the ex earns well over the threshold he ended up joining as it would cost if more in tax not to have it and decided recently to add the girls so at least they do have it .

Edited by choccy2, 24 January 2013 - 10:53 AM.


#15 Three Of Hearts

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:27 AM

My parents had me covered on their private health insurance up until I was 21 then DH and I took out our own cover at 24 and have had it ever since then.  To me it seems totally fair that your DH should be penalised for joining at an older age.  We haven't really needed to use our PHI for anything up until now starting IVF so we've been paying those premiums for years without needing it.

#16 opethmum

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:29 AM

I am not sure what you're trying to get at but you have no sympathy from me whatsoever, you're getting older, the likelihood of your family needing more services increases with age and it is right that you are being charged extra.
So just suck it up and pay up and make that a lesson learned and make sure that your kids get their insurance at the right time.


#17 (feral)epg

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:30 AM

It's not so much a penalty for your husband as a reward for you for joining earlier.


#18 *LucyE*

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:30 AM

QUOTE
It was done by Howard to force people out of the public system under the guise of doing something positive.

rolleyes.gif  No one is forced out of the public system in Australia.  Even if you have PHI, you can still be treated without cost in the public system.  This is unlike the USA health system, which so many people flippantly liken our system to.

QUOTE
It's quite simple economics. Your husband saved money by avoiding paying PHI while he was young and statistically less likely to need it. Now he is older and more of a liability to the PHI company, they need to recoup the costs.

This.

As for being penalized for going overseas, you can come to an arrangement with your PHI before you leave, so you don't get affected by the age surcharge.

#19 Rachaelxxx

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:33 AM

opethmum you are a very rude person.  It was a genuine question and I take on board the education of the replies, sympathy was not something I was after.  I wonder if you talk to people in real life like that, I wouldn't imagine you would have many friends.

#20 elizabethany

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:39 AM

Don't think of it as a penalty, think of it as a reduced bonus, as that is what it really is.  It is a reduction in a govt bonus that pays some of your PHI.  Just think of what it was like before the govt paid a thrid of you PHI premium.  They are still paying 20% for your DH.

#21 Rachaelxxx

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:42 AM

elizabethany that's very true, he has the surcharge for 10 years and then goes back to the same as mine.

#22 beastie

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:43 AM

Dont talk to me about PHI. We are high income earners so pay substantial medicare levy plus each year plus around $6000 a year in PHI premiums.  Of course then you have out of pocket expenses each time  you claim and reduction in tax rebate for health expenses.  I think the system is unsustainable as well.

#23 MagneticPoetry

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:45 AM

The rules aren't a secret, you knew what would happen, so you have to suck it up I guess.  You saved a bundle not having private cover for him, and as people have said, as you get older you need more medical stuff.  Seems pretty fair.



#24 opethmum

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:49 AM

QUOTE (Rachaelxxx @ 24/01/2013, 11:33 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
opethmum you are a very rude person.  It was a genuine question and I take on board the education of the replies, sympathy was not something I was after.  I wonder if you talk to people in real life like that, I wouldn't imagine you would have many friends.


wow sad.gif

#25 YodaTheWrinkledOne

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:51 AM

QUOTE (Rachaelxxx @ 24/01/2013, 10:16 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I guess that makes sense, but the reality is we honestly could not have afforded private health insurance for the whole family in our 30's and it wasn't a surprise, I knew the legislation, but it certainly is making it harder and harder for the average Australian to afford private health insurance.


I think it also depends on what you include as "private health insurance".  From the govt perspective, they just would like people to have private hospital insurance.  So, if you stick with the minimum - hospital cover with an excess and co-payment scheme, the premiums aren't too bad.  But if you choose to have no excess, no co-payment and choose to add on some ancillaries (physio, dental, optical, etc), then the premium sky rockets.  From a tax perspective, I think the govt is just looking to see who has private hospital coverage (no matter what payment arrangements you have to cover it) and the surcharge is applied to that.

While we are younger, we have chosen to have a high excess with co-payments for our hospital cover, because we really haven't needed to use it much.  It does save you some money to do that but the downside is that you need to be able to access a lump sum to pay the excess and/or co-payment if you choose to go into a private hospital for something.




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Special Ticket Offer, Save $8!

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is back this April! Save $8 off the door price for a limited time only!

Why I breastfed my son until he was three

The fact that I not only breastfed my son, but breastfed him for three and a half years, seems pretty incredible in retrospect.

Do babies and young children see ghosts?

Do babies and young children see ghosts? If you’ve pondered the question, you’re not alone.

15 years with Essential Baby: meet Therese

"Life has a funny way of giving you what you need when you need it the most."

Mum causes a stir by taking a stand against leggings

A mum has found herself the subject of debate after claiming tight bottoms cause lustful thoughts in men.

Don't set a parenting goal for 2015 - do this instead

The problem with goal setting as a parent is the measure. How do we really know if we’re succeeding?

5 pregnancy myths that just won't go away

When you're expecting, it often seems like everyone is keen to offer advice about what you should and shouldn't do in the interests of your health and wellbeing.

RPA hospital contacting mums after discovering vaccine storage fault

Sydney's Royal Prince Alfred Hospital (RPA) is trying to contact women who had babies at the facility after discovering a fault in a refrigerator containing vaccines.

'Nutella' not a baby name, French court says

A French court has blocked parents from naming their baby girl after the hazelnut spread Nutella, arguing it would make her the target of mockery.

Why I'm never calling myself 'just a mum' again

I’ve grown three human beings. I feed them, dress them, teach them, care for them and love them 24 hours a day. Yet for eight years, when I meet new people and they’ve asked me what I do, I tell them: “I’m just a mum”.

Rosie Batty named 2015 Australian of the Year

One year ago, Rosie Batty could not have imagined she'd be where she is. Tonight the grieving mum who put domestic violence on the national agenda was named Australian of the Year.

Five reasons to hug more

Hugging – some of us thrive on it, even depend on it – and then there are those who don't care for it really. So, are they missing out?

Help - my three-year-old has started throwing tantrums

My daughter never went through the "terrible twos" but began throwing wild tantrums shortly after her third birthday.

That's commitment

First peek at Sonia Kruger's daughter Maggie

"She smells so good, I could eat her," Kruger tells co-host David Campbell.

Mum assists in own caesarean surgery

A mum who partly delivered her own twins during a caesarean has encouraged other women to take control of their birthing experience.

How to handle common childhood regressions

Regression can be a natural and common part of development prompted by a variety of factors, but that doesn't make it less frustrating.

Disgruntled dad's pram ad goes viral

When buying a second hand pram, there are lots of things to take into consideration. 

Man discovers he's a dad after finding 55-year-old letter

Discovering you are about to father a baby is startling enough - never mind finding out you have a 61-year-old son.

15 thoughts mums have during a tantrum

Ranging from mild to feral and triggered by events both minor and major, tantrums certainly keep life interesting.

Natural pain relief in the early stages of labour

While managing labour pains on your own can be daunting, there are a number of natural pain relief options to help you cope until you are admitted to hospital.

Win an Octonauts prize pack

To celebrate the launch of Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield, a spectacular underwater adventure live on stage, we are giving away an amazing Octonauts prize pack to one lucky fan.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Forgotten Baby Syndrome claims the life of toddler

One baby dies every eight days in the back of a car in the US, victims of 'forgotten baby syndrome'.

For a brief time, I was touched by an angel

For a brief time, I was touched by an angel. You stole my heart, and changed me into the women I am today.

Chinese woman gives birth to quintuplets

After six years of trying for a baby, a couple’s dreams have come true many times over after the mum gave birth to quintuplets this week.

Chrissie Swan has reached her "sex quota"

Chrissie Swan says she and her partner have sex once a year due to her fear of falling pregnant.

Stars help save choking babies

It's an important lesson to learn, but one that busy new mums and dads might overlook until it's too late.

New Girl star Zooey Deschanel pregnant

Actress Zooey Deschanel is expecting her first child with her producer boyfriend Jacob Pechenik.

16 times 'dad reflexes' saved the day

Of course, in some cases they may be the ones who actually got their child into a precarious position in the first place, but we'll ignore that for now.

Couple's 'non-traditional' pregnancy announcement goes viral

Knowing you are not the father of your pregnant wife's baby would usually indicate a rocky relationship ahead for traditional parents.

The trials and tribulations of identical triplet newborns

Pip Donnelly is still playing spot the difference with her newborn identical triplets, Isabelle, Georgina and Frankie.

Win an Octonauts prize pack

To celebrate the launch of Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield, a spectacular underwater adventure live on stage, we are giving away an amazing Octonauts prize pack to one lucky fan.

Earthquake baby thriving five years on

Jenny Alexis is lucky to be alive after spending four days buried in the rubble of the 2010 Haitian earthquake, but now she's a thriving five year old.

Please don't say I'm lucky because I was adopted

On the one hand I was having a regular life with friends and sports and sleepovers and school. But I was also always wondering: Did my mother love me? What was wrong with me?

An open letter to non-parents who offer advice on child-rearing

Kitty, when you’re the parent of my child you’re welcome to wade in with an opinion – but until then, I’d prefer you to have a supportive ear and a glass of wine ready.

Couple arrested over baby gun video

A US couple faces charges after investigators say they found mobile phone videos showing the woman's 12-month-old daughter putting a handgun in her mouth.

NSW Health dumps 10-year limit on frozen embryos

A 10-year time limit on storing frozen embryos that were created with donor sperm has been dropped by the NSW government.

How my happy-go-lucky husband became a monster

Sharan Nicholson-Rogers watched her husband change from a happy-go-lucky police officer into an unpredictable man prone to violent and emotional outbursts.

Dads-to-be experience hormonal changes, too

Dads-to-be experience hormonal changes in line with their pregnant partners, a new study shows.

'They were just doing their job': mum of toddler killed in police chase gone wrong

"They were just doing their job. I feel so sorry for them. It is all just too sad."

Miscarriages to be formally recognised by NSW government

Women who miscarry will be able to obtain an optional "recognition of loss" certificate as a formal recognition of their often heartbreaking loss.

Cafe cubby house 'too noisy' for neighbours

Teenage parties, domestic disputes, or raucous late night pubs are the things that usually come to mind when you think neighbourhood noise complaints.

Dad films baby playing with snake

Most parents would not consider a snake an appropriate playmate for their baby, but a US dad who filmed his daughter playing with a python has defended himself against criticism.

Clever breastfeeding products

Check out this range of products designed to help make your breastfeeding journey more enjoyable, manageable and convenient.

 

Back to School Offer

Findababysitter.com.au

We've got you covered for this school year. Use www.findababysitter.com.au to meet local nannies now.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.