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Australian Health Insurance

  • Published: 2009-03-21 (Revised/Updated 2009-08-31) : Author: Lorna Finlay
  • Synopsis: Medicare is the name given to the Australian public health insurance system.

Main Document

Medicare is the name given to the Australian public health insurance system. It sees to it that people obtain free access to majority of hospital treatments and outside medical treatments which are subsidized. When it comes to a private health system, it is funded by series of private health system organized by different entities.

Medicare is the name given to the Australian public health insurance system. It sees to it that people obtain free access to majority of hospital treatments and outside medical treatments which are subsidized. When it comes to a private health system, it is funded by series of private health system organized by different entities.

One of the largest entities is Medibank Private. It is a owned by the government but then again, it operates as an enterprise of the government that falls under a synonymous regime like other private health funds that are registered.

There are private health systems which aims on insuring profit though there are non-profit systems. There are those that have only restricted membership which are focused only on a particular group whereas majority have an open membership system. In Australia, the Private Health Insurance Act of 2007 regulates the private health insurance.

The private health authority within the country operates duly depending on the rating of the community, wherein premiums don't exist due to a previous medical history of a person, present state of health or looking upon their age. A waiting period of about a year are imposed by the funds for any type of medical condition which existed with the 6 months on when the insurance was taken. A 12-month waiting period is also imposed for those conditions treated that are related to obstetrics; a waiting period of two months is imposed on every other benefit from the moment the person took in private insurance.

Funds have the responsibility to remove or reduce waiting periods in cases of individual assessments. Whereas they also have the capability to withdraw impositions although this will put the fund in being at risk with an adverse selection that can attract an insufficient number of individuals or groups coming from other funds or otherwise from the gathering of intending individuals who should have joined membership of other funds. Benefits that are paid for the following conditions creates pressure on the part of the premium for the entire fund membership which causes drop outs from the membership, eventually leading to rises and vicious cycle.

There are numerous matters on what funds aren't permitted to withhold regarding premiums, membership or benefits. These would include religion, nature of employment, racial origin, sex, and activities for leisure. Premiums intended for the product of the fund is then sold in different states although it may vary from one area to another and not completely focused on the same state.


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