Do you need private health insurance in your 30s?


4 minutes

10 January 2022

A young man smiling after exercise by the water

Is the future on your mind? Here’s what HBF members in their 30s claim for the most on hospital and extras insurance.

Your 30s are stage of life where you might be becoming more conscious of your health, the future and potentially starting a family.

Whether or not you choose to have private health insurance is an individual decision – but for many people, it can help you feel more prepared for the future.

Plus, there are some tax and financial benefits to having private hospital cover that might apply to you, so it’s worth considering if it’s a good choice for you.

In this article:

Your health in your 30s

So what might you need private health insurance for? The reality is, anything can happen.

But when deciding what you might want to be covered for, it can be helpful to look at the common claims among people in your age group.

Based on HBF claims data, some top health considerations for people in their 30s may include mental health, pregnancy and accidents and injuries.1

Let's take a closer look.

Popular hospital claims

For HBF members in their 30s, some of the most common hospital claims include:1

  • Pregnancy and birth. This is the top hospital claim category for your age group. If you are planning a baby and you’d like to give birth as a private patient, keep in mind that you will need to be covered for this for 12 months before your due date. 
  • Hospital psychiatric services. Almost half of all Australians will experience a mental health condition in their lifetime.2 HBF members in their 20s and 30s claim for hospital psychiatric treatment – which includes treatment for mental illnesses, addictions and eating disorders – significantly more than any other age group.1
  • Bone, joint and muscle. This is a popular one across all age groups, and includes treatment for conditions and injuries of the musculoskeletal system – for example, bone fractures.
  • Digestive system. This hospital claim category includes investigation and treatment for conditions that affect the digestive system – for example, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), which affects around three in 10 people.3
  • Gastrointestinal endoscopy. Similarly, this covers investigation and treatment of the inner parts of the digestive system using an endoscope (a long, thin tube with a tiny camera attached).
  • Gynaecology. This includes hospital investigation and treatment for conditions affecting the female reproductive system, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis and cervical cancer.

Other benefits of private hospital cover

Of course, you can access these treatments in a public hospital too, and this can be a good option in many cases.

However, there are a few advantages to being treated in a private hospital, such as:

  • You can avoid long waiting lists. Public hospital waiting lists for many elective surgeries can be lengthy. In a private hospital, you can often get treated more quickly, saving you some potential stress and discomfort.
  • You can choose your doctor and hospital. This gives you a bit more choice and control over your treatment, whereas in a public hospital you won’t have much say.
  • You can get a private hospital room.* If a private room is available, it can make your hospital stay that little bit more comfortable.

Plus, having private hospital insurance can give you some financial benefits, depending on your age and how much you earn:

  • You can avoid the Medicare Levy Surcharge. This is a tax applied to high income earners (over $93,000 for individuals or $186,000 for couples and families) who don’t have an appropriate level of private hospital insurance. 
  • You can avoid Lifetime Health Cover loading. This is another government initiative that makes hospital insurance more expensive if you’re over 31 when you first take it out. For each year over age 30 that you don’t have hospital cover, it will cost you an extra 2% if you do buy it later in life. 

Popular extras claims

Outside of hospital, extras cover can help you with the cost of some other health services that are generally not covered by Medicare.

For HBF members in their 30s, some of the most commonly used extras services include:1

  • Dental (Preventative and Restorative). Get benefits towards your regular check-ups and scale and cleans, plus things like fillings and extractions.
  • Optical. If you’re among the one in two Australians who needs glasses,4 optical cover can be handy – giving you benefits towards prescription glasses (including prescription sunglasses) and contact lenses. 
  • Physiotherapy. A physio can help you with things like aches and pains, rehabilitation from injury, and mobility issues.
  • Chiropractic. Many people like to see a chiropractor to help treat problems related to the skeletal and muscular system – like back and neck pain.
  • Remedial massage. Get moving and feeling better after injury, illness, or intense exercise with soft tissue manipulation from a qualified remedial massage therapist.

For parents

If you have kids, private health insurance can also provide extra choice and convenience for some treatments that may be needed.

Popular hospital claims

At HBF, some of the most popular hospital claims for children and teenagers include:1

  • Ear, nose and throat
  • Tonsils, adenoids and grommets
  • Dental surgery
  • Hospital psychiatric services
  • Bone, joint and muscle

Extras cover claims for things like dental, optical, physio and chiro are also common for children and teenagers.1

It’s important to know that not all levels of hospital cover and extras cover include the treatments and services described in this article. To find out more about levels of cover, check out HBF cover options.

Extras explained – how much do I get back?

Certainty feels good, that’s why we’ve created a line-up of extras options that give you a guaranteed % back^ on your visits to popular services like Physio, Chiro, and Dental.

Explore HBF Extras


  1. 1HBF claims data, 2019-2021
  2. 2Australian Government Department of Health – The mental health of Australians 2 (2009)
  3. 3HealthDirect – Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) (2020)
  4. 4Australian Institute of Health and Welfare – 1 in 2 Australians affected by eye problems (2015)


This article contains general information only and does not take into account the health, personal situation or needs of any person. In conjunction with your GP or treating health care professional, please consider whether the information is suitable for you and your personal circumstances.

*For the treatment of included services at Member Plus hospitals only.

^Annual limits and waiting periods apply. Percentage back benefits are payable for services, programs and providers approved by HBF, when provider charges in accordance with the Member Plus schedule fee. Excludes Basic Extras and closed products.