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HBF Private Health Insurance Review

Megan Fraser
Megan Fraser Updated: 24 January 2021
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Types of Health Insurance

HBF Health Insurance offers easy to use health cover to millions of members across Australia. You have the option to combine their Hospital and Extras policies for cover that suits your unique requirements. As a not-for-profit health fund, HBF is owned by its members and all profits from premiums received are reinvested to allow the fund to continue to provide you with new or improved benefits.

7.3%

market share Australia wide

1,000,000

plus members

87.2 cents

per dollar returned to members

Source: HBF Annual Report 2020

Whether you’re thinking of buying a health insurance policy for the first time or you’re considering making a change to your current cover, it’s typically in your best interest to compare similar policies from various health insurance brands.

ComparingExpert does not currently have access to this provider. Visit www.hbf.com.au to request a quote and compare their price and benefits to the Australian private health insurance companies we have access to.

What is HBF Health Insurance?

THIS INSURER is one of the largest not-for-profit health insurance funds operating in Australia. Since their foundation in 1941, they have continued to provide their members with high-quality health cover when they need it most. Typically cover options from this insurer range from basic plans to more comprehensive options.

What do they cover?

They offer a variety of Hospital and Extras policy options. Generally, these plans can be combined as needed to suit your needs, lifestyle and budget. HBF’s health insurance offers five Hospital Cover options; Basic plus, Bronze plus, Silver, Silver Plus and Gold. You also have the choice of 5 Extras options, varying from the affordable basic to the comprehensive option that includes a broad list of benefits with higher limits.

Pros and Cons

AdvantagesDisadvantages
Wide variety of Hospital and Extras options and the option to combine policies for tailor-made health cover.Generally, cover for rehabilitative and psychiatric services is restricted.
Finding the right policy option for your requirements is typically easy with their online comparison tool.Longer waiting periods for major services like podiatry, major dental and prosthesis.
The member-based nature of the organisation ensures a focus on improving the healthcare experience of its members.Some members report that difficulties when trying to contact the customer support centre.
Profits earned from premiums are generally reinvested to improve policy options for the members.

How to become a member

Joining HBF is easy. You can sign up on their website, send in your membership form via email, call them directly, visit your nearest branch or book an appointment.

Alternatively, you can use the quote form below to request an HBF quote or call us at 1300 795 560 to speak with a specialist.

HBF Hospital cover

HBF health insurance offers Hospital cover policy options that provide benefits towards the cost of your stay in hospital and the care you receive there.

Hospital optionsStarting prices (per week)BenefitsRestricted coverage
Basic Hospital Plus: provides for a few essential services and some additional clinical categories.$13.50
  • Private room at a Member Plus Hospital
  • Unlimited urgent Ambulance by road.
  • Accident-related services
  • Dental Surgery
  • Knee and Shoulder Reconstructions
  • Tonsils, adenoids and grommets
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Hernia and appendix
  • Gynaecology treatments
  • Rehabilitation
  • Hospital psychiatric services
  • Palliative care.
Bronze Hospital Plus: a budget-friendly option generally suited to young couples without kids.$16.10
  • Full coverage for palliative care
  • Brain and nervous system
  • Eyes (not cataracts)
  • Ear, nose and throat
  • Bone, joint and muscle
  • Kidney and bladder
  • Male reproductive system
  • Digestive system
  • Gastrointestinal endoscopy
  • Miscarriage and termination of pregnancy
  • Chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy for cancer
  • Skin
  • Medically necessary breast surgery
  • Diabetes management, insulin pumps excluded.
  • Lung and chest
  • Blood work
  • Back, neck and spine treatments
  • Medically necessary plastic and reconstructive surgery
  • Pain management device
  • Sleep studies
  • Rehabilitation
  • Hospital psychiatric services
Silver Hospital: A step up from the Bronze Hospital Plus, this option includes cover for 30 clinical categories$20.75Covers all the services listed under the Bronze Hospital Plus plan, as well as the following:
  • Heart and vascular
  • Podiatric surgery performed by a registered podiatric surgeon.
  • Implantation of hearing devices
  • Insulin pumps
  • Unrestricted palliative care
  • Rehabilitation
  • Hospital psychiatric services
Six clinic categories are excluded, including cataracts, joint replacements and dialysis of chronic kidney failure.
Silver Hospital Plus:Typically, a good option for families who need a higher level of cover.$27.95The Silver Hospital Plus cover option is similar to the Silver Hospital policy, but also covers:
  • Joint replacements
  • Treatment of cataracts
  • Full rehabilitation care
  • Hospital psychiatric services
Cover is not provided for pregnancy and birth-related services, assisted reproductive services, dialysis of chronic kidney failure and weight loss surgery.
Gold Hospital: a top Hospital option, covering all 38 clinical categories, and is usually ideal for those wanting to start or grow their family.$31.55The Gold Hospital plan includes all the benefits of the Silver Hospital Plus plan, as well as:
  • Pregnancy and birth-related services
  • Assisted reproductive services.
  • Weight loss surgery
  • Full coverage for hospital psychiatric services
  • Dialysis of chronic kidney failure
This comprehensive option covers all 38 clinical categories including pregnancy and birth-related services, assisted reproductive services, weight loss surgery, dialysis of chronic kidney failure, and full coverage for hospital psychiatric services.

Source: HBF Hospital options (January 2021)

HBF Extras cover

HBF offers five options for Extras insurance cover. These make provision for general treatments and services received outside of hospital such as dental, physio and/or optical and minimises out-of-pocket expenses.

Extras planUnique benefitsWaiting periodsAnnual limits
Basic Extras: from $3.85 per weekThis entry-level policy covers general dental, optical, physiotherapy, chiropractic and osteopathy, urgent Ambulance and healthy living programs
  • 2 months for general treatments
  • 7 days for urgent Ambulance by road
  • $160 on optical
  • none for preventative dental
Flex 50 from $5.40 weeklyComprehensive cover that offers 50% or more back on 12 popular services
  • 2 months for general treatments
  • 12 months for major dental and implants
  • 7 days for urgent Ambulance by road
  • $800 combined to use across 9 included services
  • $200 for optical
  • none for preventative dental
Flex 60 from $6.80 weeklyComprehensive health insurance cover with 60% or more back at the provider of your choice
  • 2 months for general treatments
  • 12 months for major dental and implants
  • 7 days for urgent Ambulance by road
  • $1000 combined to use across 9 included services
  • $220 for optical
  • none for preventative dental
Complete 60 from $10.00 weeklyCoverage for a wide range of Extras services with
60% or more back at the provider of your choice
  • 2 months for general treatment
  • 12 months for major dental, implants and orthodontics
  • 12 months for foot orthoses
  • 12 months for appliances, prostheses and aids
  • 12 months for hearing aids
  • 7 days for urgent Ambulance by road
No annual limit on preventative dental
Top 70 from $18.50 per weekComprehensive cover for a wide range of Extras services with 70% or more back at the provider of your choice
  • 2 months for general treatments
  • 12 months for selected appliances, prostheses and aids
  • 12 months for major dental, implants and orthodontics
  • 12 months for hearing aids and foot orthoses
  • 7 days for urgent Ambulance by road
No annual limit on preventative and
general restorative dental

Source: HBF Extras cover options (January 2021)

Does HBF offer ambulance services?

Yes, they generally cover emergency ambulance services of recognised state-based ambulance organisations or approved service providers dependent on the level of cover you have. You will generally be covered for emergency treatment, either on-site or in the emergency department, and urgent transport by road within Australia.

However, this typically depends on the level of cover you choose. Urgent Ambulance is generally not available for sale to QLD or TAS residents as their state-based schemes cover residents.

How to claim from HBF

There are several ways to lodge a claim. This includes:

  • Submitting a statement of expenses directly to HBF after a procedure,
  • Extras claims can be made on the spot on the HICAPS system at any Extras HBF treatment provider,
  • You can claim online using the myHBF online portal or app
  • at a branch, or
  • via email.

Recent HBF health insurance changes

Government reforms have resulted in the following changes to this health insurance fund:

Frequently asked questions

  • How do you use HBF gap saver?

    HPF gap saver covers the difference between your health cover benefit and your actual treatment. You can access the gap saver on a claim-by-claim basis or choose to receive benefits automatically when you make a claim electronically.
  • How to cancel an HBF policy?

    If you’re sure you want to cancel your policy, call them with your request. New members may cancel at any time during the 30-day cooling-off period and receive a refund on premiums paid if no claims have been made. However, you may want to compare your options to find a health coverage option that best suits your requirements.
  • Does HBF offer any discounts?

    Yes, as an HBF member, you get access to a range of Momentum member benefits. Typically, these including discounts on gym memberships, fitness apparel, movie tickets and more.
  • Who is HBF best suited for?

    Policy options designed to suit singletons, couples, families, single parents and overseas visitors. Make contact for an HBF health insurance quote that suits your needs, lifestyle and budget. Or call us at call 1300 795 560 to speak with a specialist.
  • Is HBF for profit or non-profit health fund?

    HBF is a non-profit health insurance fund. With over 75 years’ experience, HBF offers various health insurance products, from basic budget plans to comprehensive protection.
  • Is HBF a good health fund?

    Typically, this depends on your requirements, so it’s generally a good idea to compare all of the offerings. Not-for-profit health insurers like HBF are typically rated favourably due to higher customer retention, fewer customer complaints, and give more back to their members in paid premiums.
  • How do I change my HBF cover?

    Changes to your HBF cover can be made by calling and speaking to an agent, sending an email requesting further contact to make the change, by visiting your local HBF branch or making an appointment.
  • Does HBF cover vaccinations?

    Generally, this depends on your level of cover. HBF fully covers flu vaccinations at participating pharmacies.
  • How much is HBF ambulance cover?

    HBF Urgent Ambulance cover is available from $1.45 per week. The cost is dependent on your customer profile. Make contact for an HBF health insurance quote.
  • How do I switch to HBF?

    Typically, you’ll need to contact the insurer and inform them of your intention to switch health funds. Once you’ve shared the name of your existing health fund with HBF, they will do the rest.

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