Need to know
- Premiums increased in April, but you can compare and switch at any time to make sure you're getting the best cover and value
- We found Gold policies that cost you $500 (single) or $1000 (couple/family) more a year than similar Gold policies
- Medibank, Bupa and Qantas (NIB) are among the health funds selling these overpriced Gold policies
Stock images: Getty, unless otherwise stated.
Health insurance premiums went up on 1 April, but you can compare health insurance at any time to make sure you're getting the best cover and value.
We've found 47 Gold hospital insurance policies that cost at least $500 (single) or $1000 (couple/family) more than the cheapest Gold policy in the same state.
And it's not like there is a big difference in cover to the other Gold policies. All policies in the same tier of cover (Bronze, Silver or Gold) include all the same treatments.
Beware of these expensive policies
These Gold policies are the most expensive, costing at least $500 per year (single) more than at least one other Gold policy in most states.
- AAMI (NIB) Gold Hospital, $500 excess (in all states except SA and WA)
- Australian Unity Ultimate Hospital (Gold), $500 excess (in all states except WA)
- Medibank Gold Advanced, $500 excess (in all states except NT and WA)
- Suncorp (NIB) Gold Hospital, $500 excess (in all states except SA and WA)
In WA, the market is more competitive, but the most expensive Gold policy is Latrobe Gold Hospital, $500 excess.
Our complete list of expensive Gold policies is in the table below. If you have one of these policies, it makes sense to dump it for a cheaper one. Compare health insurance options to find the right policy for you.
How we compare Gold health insurance
We looked at the cheapest Gold policies for a single person, with a $500 excess, in each state and territory, and selected all Gold policies that were $500 a year more expensive (before the private health insurance rebate is applied).
We excluded any Gold policies that were only available with an extras policy from the same fund.
What is Gold health insurance?
Gold health insurance is the highest level of private hospital cover available in Australia.
There are four different tiers for hospital insurance:
- Gold – full or top health insurance cover in a private hospital
- Silver – medium cover
- Bronze – low cover
- Basic – very little cover, if any.
Gold policies will work for you if:
- you need cover for IVF, pregnancy and birth
- you need cataract eye surgery
- you need a hip or knee replacement
- you have chronic health issues and may need pain management with a device, insulin pumps or gastric banding surgery
- you need private treatment for psychiatry or rehabilitation.
But Gold policies probably won't be right for you if you need to keep your ongoing insurance costs low.