Victoria Health Insurance

Published: August 22, 2017

The cost of health insurance differs between states, which may result in you paying different rates for the same services. For example, an ambulance trip in Victoria can range from $900 to $5,500.

When you’re searching for the best possible price private health insurance, you might find that you could get cover that is better suited to your circumstances if you take out a policy that is specific to your region and hospital networks.

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Review and Compare Private Health Insurance in Victoria

While premiums are largely dependent on your personal needs and circumstances, the higher cost of premiums in Victoria can be attributed to a number of factors.

For instance, people living in Victoria use private hospitals and expensive treatments more often than any other part of Australia, and the higher number of claims result in premium rates being increased.

Other factors contributing to the increased price of premiums:

  • local rules and laws;
  • the cost of doing business;
  • community statistics;
  • the level of competition between health funds;
  • the cost of living;
  • health trends in your area; and
  • the demographics of your state.

Health services at every stage of life

  • Single parents: The government recognises the unique needs of this specific family type and provides assistance through telephonic helplines, counselling services, and support programs, while many private health funds offer affordable hospital, extras, and packaged policies specifically for single parent families.
  • Families: Victoria families’ can access health services through programs like the Commonwealth Child Dental Benefits Schedule, the National Disability Insurance Scheme, and Child FIRST (Child and Family Information, Referral and Support Teams).
  • Seniors: Depending on your circumstances, you could receive support for healthcare, aged care, or disability services, including Victorian Disabled Persons Parking Scheme, Aged Care Assessment Service, the Personal Alert Victoria, and more.

The cheapest health insurance in Victoria

The information in the below table represents what a single adult living in Victoria, with no dependents, can expect to pay for a combined hospital and extras package on a month-to-month basis. We’ve provided you with some policy examples as a starting point and their average monthly premium.

Health Insurance Company HCF Bupa Australian Unity Medibank nib AHM GMHBA
Policy examples Young Starter Active Save Basic Saver Everday Starter Kickstarter black+white starter flexi Budget Direct Starter Package
Example premium $169.60 $104.55 $112.25 $115.15 $108.33 $102.65 $117.75
What stands out Members have access to multiple preventative health initiatives, from exercise programs to childbirth education. Has Australia’s biggest network of extras providers for dental, optical, physiotherapy and chiropractic treatment. No hospital excess for children and you can choose the extras provider of your choice. Get 100% back on frames, contacts, prescription glasses (up to annual limits), and some general dental. There is zero excess for children, and you can get up to 75% back when you claim, up to your annual limit. You can combine extras limits into a single annual limit to use however you want on included extras. You can access a range of programs, including New Family, Strong Knees, and Preventative Health programs.
Excess $250 $0 $500 $250 $500 $500 $500

Exclusions and waiting periods

All private health insurance policies include waiting periods and exclusions in their terms and conditions to avoid people only purchasing hospital insurance or upgrading their policy when they suspected or know they need treatment. After that, they cancel their policy. If this were to happen, it would result in higher premiums for everyone.


No health insurer can refuse to provide health insurance to Australian residents, regardless of their health status. They also cannot charge higher premiums based on whether a person is more likely to require treatment. However, there are standard exclusions included with almost every health insurance policy, which means that certain conditions or services won’t be paid for.

Waiting periods

A waiting period is a length of time that must pass before you can access any services and treatments on your policy. These periods differ between insurers, so it’s important to check the terms of your policy.

Common waiting periods include:

  • 2 months: Psychiatric care, rehabilitation, palliative care, general dental, and physiotherapy.
  • 6 months: Optometry (including glasses).
  • 12 months: Pre-existing conditions, pregnancy & birth related services (including IVF, labour ward fees, private obstetricians), and major dental procedures (like crowns).
  • 1 year and over: Orthodontics and other high-cost procedures.

Calculate the Victoria health insurance levies and rebates

You can get more from your taxes by avoiding certain levies and receiving rebates when purchasing private health cover.

Private health insurance rebates

If you have health insurance, the government will give you a rebate in the form of a percentage of the cost of your premiums, up to a maximum of 34.579%. This amount depends on your taxable income, your age, and how many dependent children you have.

You can claim your rebate either from your fund through reduced premiums or back on your annual income tax return from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).


You can save up to 1.5% in tax by avoiding the Medicare Levy Surcharge (MLS) by taking out private health insurance. This is an additional tax amount payable by Australians who don’t have private health cover and earn over a certain amount. You can also avoid the Lifetime Health Cover loading of 2% for every year that you haven’t had private cover for since you turned 30 (up to a maximum of 70%).

Compare Your Private Health Insurance Options

FAQs for private health insurance in Victoria

Yes, ambulance services are covered in Victoria. It’s free for seniors who hold a Victorian Pension Card or Health Card and to members of the Ambulance Subscription scheme. If you become a member of Ambulance Victoria all ambulance services throughout Australia will be covered. Membership is $43.80 for singles and $87.60 for families per year.

If you live in the rural or remote areas, you’ll also receive partial reimbursement for travel and accommodation costs when travelling long distances for specialist medical or dental treatment through the Victorian Patient Transport Assistance Scheme (VPTAS). Alternatively, many private health insurance policies cover some or all ambulance costs.

There are restricted health insurance funds which offer cover to police and nurses in Victoria, including Nurses & Midwives Health and Police Health.

Victoria police health insurance is only available to current or former employees of any State, Territory, or Federal policy department, service, union, or association and their spouses (current or former) and dependents.

Nurses & Midwives Health is available to current or former registered nurses and midwives, enrolled nurses, nurse practitioners, psychiatric nurses, mothercraft nurses, nursing or midwifery assistances, nursing students, and those employed to help provide nursing care or services, as well as their family members.

Yes, there are free dental services available in Victoria. Under the Commonwealth Child Dental Benefits Schedule, you will get assistance for basic dental treatment over a two-year period for 2 to 17-year-olds. The dental treatments available include dental check-ups and teeth cleaning, fissure sealants and fillings, dental X-rays, extractions, and root canals.

Children are eligible to receive free dental treatment if they receive a Family Tax Benefit or other relevant Australian Government payments. The Treatment is bulk billed through Medicare, and there’s no waiting list. You’ll have no out-of-pocket expenses.

Private health insurance can be an effective means to cover you and your family healthy. Make sure to compare top health funds available in Victoria to get maximum value for the cover that you need.

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Ask an Expert?


  • Any good offer |

    Husband and wife and 5 children. Husband 55, wife 50 and eldest son 20 and youngest son 9.
    We live in Melbourne. My wife and I have pension cards. I want to know what are the extras that you cover other than those that I already got from the pension benefits. I also have that pharmaceutical card that allows me to purchase the medicines for free, but we usually hit the limit before the end-cycle year.

    I was smoking and have now stopped smoking. I want the best health insurance company in Australia and cover 100% of all kind of sickness, therapeutic, ambulance, hospital, medications, financial supplements for the equipment and explanation in detail about all health insurance inside and outside Australia and what coverage includes.

    1- Comprehensive health insurance for ambulances, hospitals, medicines, financial supplements and general treatments in Australia without giving birth.
    2. All mentioned in paragraph 1 with coverage of travel outside Australia.

    I want the excess to be zero. All should include in details the waiting period please
    Thank you and kind regards.

      Anneke Van Aswegen |


      Thanks for reaching out. Because there are so many health funds offering top Health and Extras cover options, each with their own extensive list of extras and hospital cover, you might want to call our specialists directly on 1300 786 328 to help compile a comparison for you, so you can feel confident in your decision.

      As a starting point, please feel free to review some of the leading health insurance companies here.