Hospital excess is a sum of money you agree to pay upfront before you can claim a benefit on hospital treatment. Hospital excess is also known as a front-end deductible.
You only need to pay the excess when you or someone else on your policy needs to go hospital. It only applies when you go to hospital - you don’t have to pay hospital excess if you go to an extras service provider, like a dentist or physio. Depending on your health fund, hospital excess may apply every time you go to hospital in a year, or may be capped so you only have to pay up to a certain limit every year.
With HBF, you only pay hospital excess once per person, per calendar year (to a maximum of twice on a family policy) when you’re admitted to hospital.
Hospital excess is one of the costs you cannot claim from your health fund.
How does hospital excess work?
Some hospital insurance policies have set excess built into the policy, while others give you the option to choose excess. An optional hospital excess is designed to help reduce your premiums – the higher the excess, the lower your premium.
For example, a hospital insurance policy might let you choose to pay no excess, $250 excess or $500 excess. If you choose higher excess, you will have a greater reduction on your premium. When going to hospital, the amount of excess you chose will be the sum you are required to pay upfront prior to claiming a benefit from your health fund.
With HBF, dependent children on most family policies don’t have to pay excess when they go to hospital. For example, if you have $500 excess on your family policy and your child needs to go to hospital, you won’t have to pay that $500, as HBF doesn’t apply excess to dependent children.