Skip to content   Skip to footer navigation 

Compare Defence Health health insurance

How Defence Health rates for member complaints, gap cover and ambulance.

Defence Health
CHOICE staff
CHOICE staff


Checked for accuracy by our qualified fact-checkers and verifiers. Find out more about fact-checking at CHOICE.

Who is Defence Health?

Defence Health is a nonprofit restricted membership health fund for the Australian Defence Force and the wider defence community. It's part of Members Health, an alliance of nonprofit and mutual health funds.

Phone: 1800 335 425



Who can join Defence Health?

Current or former members of the Australian Defence Force, reservists, civilian employees of Department of Defence (or related departments), employees of Defence contractors, and some family members of any of the above.

Does Defence Health get many complaints from members?

Defence Health has a High complaints rating.

When we score policies we give each fund a complaints rating, based on the number of complaints and serious disputes the Ombudsman deals with. We take into account the size of the fund, so big funds don't get automatically penalised for having more complaints. The ratings are Low, Medium and High. A Low rating is better than a High rating – it means the fund has fewer complaints and fewer serious disputes for its size.

How good is Defence Health's gap cover?

A medical gap is the difference between Medicare's recommended fee and what your doctor actually charges for a treatment or service.

Health funds have agreements with particular doctors and hospitals to cover all of the gap, which are called 'no gap agreements', or part of that gap, which are called 'known gap agreements' (these will have lower out-of-pocket costs, usually less than $500).

Our graphic below displays the CHOICE gap rating, which takes into account the percentage of services where members either paid no gap or a known gap, compared to the state average.

Rating scale

  • Well above average
  • Above average
  • Average
  • Below average
  • Well below average.

How many hospital agreements does Defence Health have in each state?

The benefit amount your fund pays you for hospital services depends not only on the type of cover you buy, but also whether your fund has an agreement with the hospital where you're treated. 

The table below shows how many hospital agreements Defence Health has in your state compared to the fund with the highest number (the industry maximum). Note that public hospitals don't have agreements with specific funds and are generally treated as though they're agreement hospitals.

Does Defence Health offer any discounts?

While Defence Health does not offer any discounts for prepaying your annual premium or paying by direct debit, there are youth discounts available on some hospital policies, and these are transferable (which means you can transfer a discount from another fund to one of these policies).

Does Defence Health offer ambulance cover?

All Defence Health extras, hospital and combined policies have emergency ambulance cover.

Does Defence Health offer family policies that cover adult children?

  • Adult children are covered on family policies for free until they turn 21.
  • Full-time students are covered on family policies for free until they turn 25.
  • Adult children younger than 25 can be covered on extended family policies for an extra cost. 

Does Defence Health let you claim online or in-app?

You can claim online for general dental, some major dental, physiotherapy, chiropractic, osteopathy, podiatry, alternative therapies, psychology, dietitian, optical, occupational therapy and speech therapy. Members can also claim via an app (iOS and Android) for all extras.

We care about accuracy. See something that's not quite right in this article? Let us know or read more about fact-checking at CHOICE.

Stock images: Getty, unless otherwise stated.