Health insurance waiting periods


What are health insurance waiting periods?

A waiting period is the time between joining a health fund and being able to make a claim. Generally, they apply to:

  • New members who have never held hospital or extras cover with a health fund.
  • Existing members who upgrade to a higher level of cover or reduce their excess.
  • Members who transfer from another health fund and haven’t completed the waiting period for equivalent benefits.

Waiting periods protect existing members from new members who join a health fund with a pre-existing condition and start claiming large sums right away.

How long do you have to wait?

Waiting periods differ depending on your health fund and your situation. Generally, they can vary from no waiting period at all to a 12-month wait.
  • Accidents – No waiting period
  • Obstetrics and maternity – 12 months
  • Pre-existing ailment, illness or condition (other than psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care) – 12 months
  • Any other benefit for hospital (or hospital substitution) treatment – 2 months

Switching health funds

Switching from your existing health fund to another one can mean better cover and maybe more savings. It pays to do some research.

Many insurers will handle your paperwork for you and arrange your transfer into their fund. You will have continuity of cover and there are generally money back guarantees in place for a certain amount of time (usually 60 days), in case you change your mind.

If you are thinking about getting new or extended health insurance, give us a call on 13 55 55 and let Choosi compare your options for you.

This is general information only and does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider the relevant PDS available on this website prior to purchasing any product. Choosi offers insurance products from a range of brands but does not compare all products available in the market.