Don’t wait: 3 kids hospital procedures to get covered for


4 minutes

30 August 2019

Last updated:

Parents might not like it, but we all know it’s common for kids to need surgery in their younger years, particularly for their ears, nose and throat.

To help you prepare for whatever might come your way, we’ve run our numbers and found some of the most common hospital claims for children under 10 years old.

Get your family covered for these procedures and you’ll help ensure your children don’t wait longer than they need to.

1. Removal of Tonsils

Tonsillectomy is one of the more common kids’ surgical procedures in Western Australia.

Symptoms of infected tonsils, or tonsillitis, include sore throat, fever, disturbed sleep, and a vulnerability to other infections1. So when a child’s tonsils get irritated, they can literally become a pain in the neck.

If these symptoms get bad enough, or cause complications, your doctor may recommend surgical removal.

At that point, you’ll want your child taken care of as soon as possible. A child who can’t sleep due to tonsil pain and difficulty breathing can become exhausted. This could lead to poor performance in school, general fussiness, and a rough time for parents.

Unfortunately, tonsillectomy has an average wait time of 125 days in the national public hospital system2, so it helps if you can use private health insurance to avoid the public wait list.

The good news is that all HBF hospital covers include coverage for tonsillectomy.

As an added bonus, on all hospital insurance covers currently available, HBF offers no excess for your dependants when they are admitted to hospital for treatment  and are covered under a family or single parent policy.

2. Surgery for ear infections

You probably know at least one parent who’s got an ear infection story. And they might have told you about their child’s struggle with poor sleep, headaches, fever, loss of balance and trouble hearing3.

These are all common symptoms of an ear infection. If they get bad enough, it can mean a trip to the hospital.

If your child isn’t seen quickly, those hearing difficulties could lead to speech problems4. If a child can’t hear while they’re learning to speak, they might require speech therapy later on.

Surgery for ear infections usually involves one of two standard procedures. A myringotomy is a small incision to the ear that lets fluids and pressure drain out. This may be followed by grommet surgery, where a small tube is inserted into the incision so that it can drain for longer.

It’s worth noting that the public hospital wait time for a myringotomy can be potentially over 60 days2 so it's worth considering private health cover.

Cover for myringotomy and grommet surgery is included in every level of HBF hospital cover currently available for sale.

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3. Dental Surgery

Not many people look forward to going to the dentist, but kids especially may not sit still. Nerves, anxiety and simple fear of the dentist can play a part here.

This can mean the best option is to use general anaesthetic (be ‘put to sleep’) for dental surgery. If your child requires general anaesthetic, they’ll need to be admitted at a day surgery for treatment.

For day surgeries like this, the accommodation and theatre fees are covered under hospital insurance, while the procedure itself (such as removing a tooth) is covered under Extras insurance.

Coverage for dental surgery starts with HBF’s most affordable cover, Basic Hospital Plus. Different Extras covers all provide different levels of benefits for these procedures, so it pays to think carefully when selecting dental coverage.

Speaking of teeth, another thing you might want cover for is orthodontics. This isn’t a hospital procedure, but it’s still worth mentioning because it’s a big, often costly decision. You’ll want to plan ahead for it – here’s a blog about the cost of braces and how to save by looking forward

Keeping your family healthy

Every parent wants to keep their kids healthy. But the unexpected can happen – and often does when it comes to young children.

To continue helping your family stay healthy, HBF is here with affordable cover for the whole family.

1 Health Direct - (2019)
2AIHW - Elective surgery waiting times multilevel data (2020)
3 Health Direct  - Ear infection (2019)
4 Better Health Victoria - Ear problems in children (2012)