Here’s what you should know before buying travel

On Thursday the Australian Medical Association released its private health insurance report card which emphasised that young people especially were dropping private health insurance or never taking it up in the first place, instead favouring the public health system and better value for money from insurers.

The peak body representing doctors is the latest group to call for an overhaul of the private health insurance industry, as pressure mounts on the federal government to force greater transparency.

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Dr Tony Bartone said

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The categories were confusing, with some silver products costing more and
providing less coverage than gold ones.

For example, Bupa paid out $2,064 for an uncomplicated baby delivery in Queensland compared with $2,271 in South Australia. NIB consistently paid out the lowest benefits across all common procedures when compared with other major insurers. HBF and HCF paid the highest benefits for common procedures. A bigger cash handout is not the answer for private health insurance woes.

The AMA report card also compared the benefits paid by insurers for common procedures and services including obstetrics and hip replacements. The amount paid out by the same insurer varied between states and territories, in some cases by hundreds of dollars.

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