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2021 Review of Bupa Private Health Insurance

Megan Fraser Updated: 28 January 2021
Types of Health Insurance

Bupa is a private health insurance company that offers health insurance to more than 4 million customers. Members can choose between six Hospital plans and 7 Extra cover options. Alternatively, you could opt for one of their 47 different packaged options which combine Hospital and Extras plans.

This insurer holds 25.4% of the market share and has won the Canstar’s ‘Outstanding Value Health Insurance’ National Award Winner for 13 years running. Although this typically indicates that they offer value to their members, whether they are the right insurance provider for you depends on your circumstances.

Whether you’re thinking of switching to Bupa or applying for cover for the first time, it’s a good idea to compare their policies. You may also want to examine the benefits of cover and the cost to decide if it meets your requirements.

ComparingExpert does not currently have access to this provider. www.bupa.com.au to request a quote and compare their price and benefits to the Australian life insurance brands we have access to.

Private health cover from Bupa

The company offers a range of health insurance coverage options. You’ll generally be able to choose between Hospital only policies, Extras cover or a packaged plan. They also offer Ambulance only cover to those that don’t receive this type of cover with their state services.

This fund also offers health support programmes with some policies offering a level of cover for a gym membership, swimming programs for kids, yoga, pilates, etc.

How much does Bupa health insurance cost?

Hospital cover generally starts from $16.70 per week, Extras cover is available from $3.25 weekly, and Combined cover options usually start from $19.90 per week. Generally, the premium you can expect to pay for cover varies according to state, the type of cover you apply for and the level of coverage you’re looking for.

How to join Bupa health insurance?

If you don’t have private health insurance, you can become a member by visiting their website, requesting a quote and applying for a policy. After joining, you’ll usually receive your Bupa card which contains your membership number and the list of people covered under your policy.

Hospital cover

This insurer offers Hospital cover options to meet different customers’ needs. You have the option of adjusting your premium by choosing your excess amount; zero, $250 or $500 excess. Generally, the higher your choice of co-payment, the lower your monthly premium is likely to be.

PlanStarting price (weekly)BenefitsRestricted cover
Basic Accident Only Hospital$16.70Minimum coverage includes Accident Inclusion and basic lung and chest treatment.
  • Rehabilitation
  • Hospital psychiatric services
  • Palliative care
Basic Plus Starter Hospital$17.45Budget conscious hospital cover includes treatments for tonsils, adenoids and grommets, joint reconstructions etc.
  • Rehabilitation
  • Hospital psychiatric services
  • Palliative care
Bronze Plus Simple Hospital$19.35Quality, affordable cover for a range of common treatments such as brain and nervous system blood chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy for cancer to mention a few.
  • Rehabilitation
  • Hospital psychiatric services
  • Palliative care
Silver Plus Essential Hospital$23.95Medium level hospital cover for services such as back, neck and spine, kidney and bladder, digestive system, hernia and appendix, gastrointestinal endoscopy, heart and vascular system, lung and chest, gynaecology and more.
  • Rehabilitation
  • Hospital psychiatric services
Silver Plus Advanced Hospital$33.90A host of treatments are covered including pain management with device, medically necessary breast, plastic and reconstructive surgery, skin, dental surgery, sleep studies and podiatric surgery.
  • Hospital psychiatric services
Gold Complete Hospital$41.00Premium hospital cover for complete peace of mind. You’ll be covered for all available benefits without any restrictions.No restricted cover

Source: Privatehealth.gov.au January 2021

Bupa Extras

Bupa extras options ensure that your everyday health expenses are covered. Extras helps cover the costs associated with treatments and services received outside of the hospital, allowing you to keep your health on track. However, Extras only cover will not exempt you from paying the MLS or Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) loading.

PlanStarting Price (weekly)BenefitsWaitingAnnual limits
Orange 50$3.15Extras services including general dental, physio and chiro with 50% back for most items at recognised providers.2 months for general dental, physio, chiro and osteopathy$500 per person combined limit for general dental, physio, chiro and osteopathy in year 1
Budget Extras 60$4.60Extras services such as dental, optical, physio, chiro and more with 60% back for most items at network service providers.2 months for all extras services offered 6 months for health management
  • $350 per person for general dental
  • $350 per person combined limit for physio, chiro and osteopathy, ante natal – midwife, acupuncture, remedial massage, chinese herbalism, exercise physiology
  • $210 per person for members first optical providers or $150 per person for other recognised providers
Orange 60$7.15Visit the range of extras service providers and get 60% back for most treatment items.2 months for all extras services offered
  • $700 per person combined limit for general dental, physio, chiro and osteopathy in year 1
  • $150 per person for optical
  • $100 per person for remedial massage
Your Choice Extras 60$8.90Flexible extras cover with up to 60% back at members first providers2 months for all extras services except major dental, endodontic and orthodontic (12 months) and health management (6 months)
  • $700 per person for general dental in year 1
  • $500 per person for major dental and endodontic in year 1
  • $450 per person for orthodontic in year 1
  • $400 per person combined limit for speech therapy, eye therapy, occupational
  • therapy in year 1
Top Extras 60$15.35Medium level of extras cover for a wide range of services with between 60 and 66% back2 months for all services except major dental, endodontic and orthodontic, health aids & appliances and glucose monitors (12 months) and health management (6 months)
  • $1000 per person for major dental & endodontic
  • $700 per person for orthodontics
  • $290 per person for optical at members first providers or $200 at other recognised providers
  • $700 per person for physio
  • $500 per person for chiro and osteopathy
  • $400 per person for podiatry
  • $350 per person for ante natal – midwife
Top Extras 75$23.25Comprehensive extras cover, providing high yearly limits for a wide range of services
  • No annual limit for general dental
  • $1100 per person for major dental & endodontic
  • $800 per person for orthodontics
  • $340 per person for optical with members first providers per person or $240 per person with other recognised providers
  • $800 per person for physio
  • $600 per person for chiro and osteopathy
Top Extras 90$31.95High yearly limits for a comprehensive range of extras services with 90-100% back

Source: Privatehealth.gov.au January 2021

Packaged Hospital and Extras plans

Bupa offers 47 different combined Hospital and Extras plans to cover both in hospital treatments and everyday health services. Packaged plans offer varying combinations of hospital and extras cover. These start with the Basic Accident Only Hospital with Orange 50 plan from $19.90 per week, and ranges to the Gold Ultimate Health Cover plan which starts at $84.25 per week.

Popular packaged plans include:

How to claim from Bupa health insurance

Making a health insurance claim with This insurer is easy.

  • Online: Log in to your myBupa account and submit your claim online.
  • Send in your claim by mail: Post your claim form, invoice and receipt to Bupa and payments will be made through EFT or cheque.
  • Direct claims: Your hospital will send claims for in-hospital stay and treatment straight to the insurer. If your hospital is not part of the Bupa network, pay them upfront and submit a claim form to the insurer. For a doctor using the insurer’s gap cover scheme, billing will typically go directly to The insurer.
  • Membership cards: For extras services claims, swipe your membership card at service providers’ electronic claims facility.
  • When going to a doctor that doesn’t use The insurer’s gap cover scheme, you’ll have to take your medical bill to Medicare and The insurer will pay the rest, up to your limit.

Frequently asked questions and answers

  • Who owns Bupa?

    Bupa health insurance Australia is part of the international Bupa Group. The Australian operation is for profit, while the international company is not-for-profit and has no shareholders.
  • What was Bupa originally called?

    This insurer was originally known as the British United Provident Association. Its founding purpose is to ‘prevent, relieve and cure sickness and ill-health of every kind.’
  • How much does it cost to join Bupa health care?

    They offer a range of health care options with hospital cover options typically starting from $16.70 weekly; Extras cover starting from $3.15 weekly and combined hospital and extras plans starting from $19.90 weekly.
  • What is Bupa dental?

    A choice of Bupa policies helps you budget for dental treatment. Members with combined hospital and extras cover including general dental are afforded regular check-ups and other dental preventative services at Bupa dental clinics.
  • How does Bupa health insurance work?

    Bupa offers private health insurance for which customers usually pay a monthly fee. Health insurance covers some or all of the costs of private treatments.
  • How to get a Bupa membership number?

    When joining Bupa health insurance, you’ll usually receive your Bupa card which contains your membership number and the list of people covered under your policy.
  • How much does Bupa cost for a family of 4?

    Costs are generally dependent on the nature of the plan you take whether hospital, extras or combined cover. Premiums are usually calculated using several factors such as age, location and choice of excess. It’s best to get an accurate quote online or by calling 0808 271 4873. With this insurer, taking a family policy affords you a 10% saving compared to buying an individual policy.

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