11.Read the fine print
Before signing up with any fund, read its brochure and key features guide thoroughly. If there’s anything you don’t completely understand about your entitlements, write to the insurer and get written answers to your questions before you join.
It may seem like a hassle, but not in comparison to the problems you’ll encounter if your cover doesn’t match your expectations.
Fine print checklist
Here are a few of the questions to ask the fund — when you take out insurance, when you’re reviewing it, and before you go into hospital:
- Who counts as a member? Family cover generally includes your partner and children under a certain age. The age varies from fund to fund - it could be 16, 21 or even up to 23. Some policies may include full-time students under 25 or other dependants. If this extended cover for family members is offered, does it cost extra?
- Are there any advantages to longer membership? These may include higher benefits or benefit limits, or lower excesses the longer you’re a member.
- What waiting periods will apply?
- If you want to go to a specific private hospital or be covered for treatment by a specific health practitioner will there be out-of-pocket expenses?