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Why should people give extras insurance any thought? It doesn’t cover your hospital stay, and it’s not needed to help pay for life-threatening conditions.

On top of that, it certainly isn’t free.

However, survey results show that 4 in 5 Aussies with extras cover consider their policy “very good or fairly good value for money”. So, why is that?

Extras insurance covers treatment you’ll actually use

The seemingly ‘trivial’ things it covers are – as a matter of fact – crucial to your quality of life.

  • Eyes. Only a few years ago, close to 12 million Australians had long-term eye problems. This accounted for roughly half the Australian population.
  • Muscles. 3.7 million Australians reported back problems in 2014-15 . Six years ago, that was the third leading cause of ‘disease burden’ in Australia.
  • Teeth. 3 in 10 Aussies aged 25-44 had untreated tooth decay. Oral exams cost an average of $54 a visit, calculus removal costs $107, and a full crown costs $1,471, according to PrivateHealth.gov.au.

These healthcare issues collectively affect millions of Australians. However, an extras policy helps pay for the treatment of conditions affecting these parts of the body. It goes to show that while hospital cover undoubtedly provides security in crucial moments, extras helps cover everyday health expenses that many Australians rely on.

All that being said, your first priority should be making sure health insurance is worth your money. Anyone with perfect teeth, zero muscle aches, and great eyesight won’t need cover for any of the above. However, what about…

  • remedial massages;
  • subsidised gym memberships;
  • access to dieticians; or
  • podiatry consultations?

We’re not saying that everyone needs extras. Instead, figure out what benefits you would most often claim on, and see how much you could save each year by being insured.

How? It’s easy when you compare extras policies side-by-side on our website.

4 easy ways to get more from your extras

  1. Claim more than you spend. The rule of thumb should be, ”Would I spend less on paying for treatment outright than I do by claiming on my extras policy?” If the answer is yes, then health cover isn’t for you. If not, read on.
  2. Check out your ‘claimable returns’. Look for policies that pay a percentage of each treatment (e.g. 60% of the bill) instead of a fixed amount (e.g. $40), as you may get more value from such a product. This is labelled as ‘claimable returns’ in your policy brochure.
  3. Enjoy the rebate and save on cover. The Australian Government Private Health Insurance Rebate helps you pay for health cover, and is available to anyone who holds any type of cover – including extras.
  4. Shop around. Your health insurer may have a preferred provider contract with certain healthcare providers (e.g. your local dental surgery). As a result, you may not have to pay any out of pocket expenses, or at least a smaller one.

So, is this type of health insurance good value? By now, you’ll have a pretty good idea if it’s the right kind of policy for you. If you need help deciding though, our health insurance experts are one phone call away.

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