Lifetime Health Cover

Lifetime Health Cover is an initiative brought in by the Federal Government in July 2000 that encourages Australians to take out hospital insurance earlier in life, and maintain this cover.

How does it work?

Australians who don’t take out private hospital cover before 1 July following their 31st birthday generally face paying an annual 2% financial loading, in addition to the base rate premium for private hospital cover.

For example, if you wait until you are 35 to take out private hospital cover, you could pay an extra 10% on top of your premium. If you wait until you are 40, you could face paying up to 20% more, if you wait until you are 45, you could face paying an additional 30% on top of your premium and if you wait until you are 50, you could pay an additional 40%.

If you take out hospital cover before 1st July following your 31st birthday, you won’t have to pay LHC as long as you continue to hold eligible cover. Otherwise, in most circumstances, it is unavoidable and will increase by 2% every year until you purchase it. The maximum loading is 70%.

How long is the LHC applicable for?

If a policy holder pays for private hospital insurance for 10 continuous years, the loading will be removed (as outlined in the Private Health Insurance Act 2007). If you were born before 1 July 1934, you do not need to pay the Lifetime Health Cover loading.

Be aware

Lifetime Health Cover loading only applies to hospital cover. It does not apply to private health insurance for extras cover (general and ancillary treatment).

Speak to an expert on 13 19 20 to discuss how Lifetime Health Cover will impact you.