Private Health Insurance has paid $15 billion in benefits on behalf of privately insured Australians in the 12 months to March 2013.
Private Healthcare Australia Chief Executive Dr Michael Armitage said claims by Choice that PHI only paid 8% of health expenditure in Australia were misleading.
“The fact is that Private Health Funds are restricted by legislation for paying for many services such as GP visits and in those areas where Funds are able to pay, they are a major contributor to health care costs for Australians.
Private Health Funds paid a total of $ 11.16 billion for hospital benefits and $3.77 billion for General Treatment Cover over the same period.
Private Health Funds paid for 51% of all surgery carried out in Australia and 55% of all elective surgery. Private Health Funds paid for 80% of all elective surgery carried out in Private Hospitals.
Dr Armitage said all privately insured Australians will pay more for their private health cover as a result of the Government’s legislation, and when people drop out or downgrade their cover, those people presently on public hospital waiting lists will have more people competing with them to get their operations done.
Dr Armitage said privately insured Australians should call on the Coalition to commit to reversing these changes during its first term, if elected to Government.
Contact: Jen Eddy 02 62021000