From 1 April 2019 there are going to be some reforms to Australia’s private health insurance. The idea is for this to streamline the whole process and to make it a lot less confusing for people trying to choose their private health fund. Instead of so many various types of cover, there will be Gold, Silver and Bronze.
Originally the reform was going to split spinal surgery into two of the categories. Some surgery was going to be covered in the silver level of cover and the more complex spinal surgeries were going to be only covered by the gold level of cover. This would get very confusing and a lot of patients would have thought they were covered and booked surgery with their spinal surgeon only to discover that they weren’t fully covered. It may also have meant that patients would not be able to have the surgery that they needed and perhaps would have had a smaller surgery that would not have actually dealt with the problem and could have resulted in them requiring further surgery in the future.
Thankfully, the Federal Health Minister, Mr Greg Hunt has now confirmed that all spinal surgery will be covered under the silver health insurance band as well as the gold health insurance band.
It is always a good idea to call your private health fund and ask them if you are covered for spinal surgery if you think you are likely to need an operation.
Dr Moloney’s staff are always happy to help in any way we can, even if it’s just giving you an idea of the right questions to ask your fund. Please call us if you are unsure. We are more than happy to help.