So you’re young, healthy and aren't too sure if you need health insurance?
Our Queensland Country Health Fund Member Jenna, shares her story about the value of having health insurance and what it means to her.
Did you know that the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) reported that 27% of people who ended up in the hospital emergency department in 2016-17 were young adults of the age 15 to 34!
We all think we’re invincible when we’re young; the shared belief that we’ll never get sick, injured or have an accident – it'll never happen to us! And while we hope it never does, the reality can sometimes be very different. With that statistic in mind, health insurance makes sense so that if the unfortunate happens your private hospital cover, once you've served your waiting periods will:
- give you peace of mind with your choice of Doctor
- give you the choice to be treated in a private hospital
- give you the flexibility to get the care or treatment you need.
Some of our younger Members share their stories of their ‘what-if’ moments and the benefits and value of health insurance for them.
The nitty-gritty details
- You may no longer be covered by your parents’ family policy when you turn 25 years old, or earlier (21 years old) if you stop full-time study or graduate from university, get a full-time job, or get married.
- With private hospital cover, you'll also get to choose your doctor and hospital options when you need or wish to be treated at. Plus, you don't have to be told when your surgery or treatment is! If you have the time to be flexible, you can work in surgery or other treatments into your own schedule; giving you a greater say on when it happens.
- Your 20's are a great time to take out private health insurance to avoid the Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) loading before you turn 31. Remember, time flies when you're having fun!
- Nothing beats piece of mind. Like our Member Rochelle says,
"I suppose we all think we’re invincible. But there are so many ‘what ifs’ in all our lives. I’m pleased we have private health insurance even as a healthy young couple, you never know when you’re going to need it and you’re so grateful to know you have it for when you do."
- It costs money to have private health insurance, but what value should you put on your health and wellbeing? Do you have savings to cover you if a 'what if' happens to you?
- Will it save you money at tax time? Well, that all depends on your yearly earnings and if you're a high income earner. It's worth discussing this at tax time with an accountant, but it's probably not a big draw card while you're young.
- Your cover can be chosen to suit you and where you're at in life! If you’re single and living life as it comes, singles cover is worth a look at it. If you're in a committed relationship and thinking about the future, why not skip the engagement ring and commit to health insurance with couples cover. And if an unexpected miracle happens it's easy to add a child and move to family cover.
What about extras cover?
- Extras cover can give you better control over your health and wellbeing.
- Extras cover includes therapies and services like dental, optical and physiotherapy.
- With major dental, you can get those wisdom teeth removed.
- With optical cover, you get to choose those new designer glasses to wear while reading all those text books at university.
- If you're like our Member Rochelle and injure yourself while dancing on the dancefloor with friends, you can be covered for physiotherapy and get the rehab that you need to hopefully avoid surgery.
- There’s an array of services you can utilise to assist your health and wellbeing, day in and day out and better secure your future. Think that dental appointment for a scale and clean, a remedial massage to release tension and the stresses held in your muscles or signing up to a yoga workshop to limit lower back pain (yep, it’s covered with Queensland Country Health Fund!*). And that’s just to name a few.
*To comply with private health insurance legislation, you must have been referred by your health care professional to participate in a health management program to address or improve a specific medical condition. A Health Management Program Benefit Approval Form must accompany a claim for these benefits.
When the orthodontist took Rochelle’s Mum aside to recommend that her 14-year-old daughter be fitted with braces, the mother of four agreed. It was for these ‘what if’ moments they had private health insurance. Some years later, a now soon to be married Rochelle was pleased she did.
Let’s face it, we live in an expensive world. Much of our hard earned money goes towards the cost of living with bills and often numerous dollars getting taken out of our accounts by direct debit, don’t even get us started on smashed avocado prices. There’s a way you can get back on top. It’s up to you to decide where your money goes and if there’s genuine value in where you’re spending it.
You shouldn’t feel forced to elect to be a private patient when in a public hospital. As an Australian citizen you’re entitled to free public hospital treatment and shouldn’t have to use your private health insurance to pay for a public hospital treatment.