Laura Crowden the Corporate Affairs Manager at  iSelect joins Dave to explore the complex area of private health with many funds increasing Premiums from Oct 1 after the usual April 1 Rise was placed on hold for 6 months.

Most Australians with private health insurance will still see their premiums rise as Private health insurance premiums are set to rise again this Thursday 1st October, in an out-of-cycle price hike that could be a nasty shock to policy holders at a time when many are already struggling financially.

New research by leading health insurance comparison service iSelect indicates that the upcoming price rise will prompt over half (57%) of policy holders to take action, with 46% looking to review or compare their private cover, and a further 11% looking to cancel all or part of their policy.

Premiums were set to rise by an average of 2.92% on April 1st 2020 but were postponed for six months due to COVID-19. The amount policies will increase by varies considerably, with some set to go up by more than the planned 2.92% average, others by less and some not at all.

Some funds – including HBF, AIA, health.com.au & TUH – have announced they won’t be increasing premiums at all on October 1, while other funds – including Bupa and NIB – are waiving the premium increase for any customers currently receiving JobKeeper or JobSeeker payments.

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ADVICE

·         See if you can save money by switching to a cheaper policy with a different fund, making changes to your level of cover or increasing your excessIf you are struggling with the cost of private cover, look to switch before you ditch to keep the peace of mind in these uncertain times, especially with elective surgery wait lists expected to blow-out due to COVID-19 backlog

·         Saving money doesn’t have to mean compromising your level of cover, with many customers able to find a similar level of cover with a different fund for a cheaper price

·         Switching can be well worth it, with almost half (47%) of those customers surveyed by iSelect who had switched providers saving more saving $300+ a year