What is the best health insurance for pregnancy?

Starting a family and having a baby could prove to be very challenging financially. You have to be prepared for the high costs associated with pregnancy. Consider all the medical fees that come with pregnancy and even after giving birth. There are doctor's and OB consultation fees, ultrasound scans, and post-natal visits after delivery.

Bronze Hospital & Bronze Extras Set Benefits

Entry level hospital cover. Includes preventative dental and optical.
$ 19.10
per week
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Bronze Hospital & Silver Extras Set Benefits

Entry level cover. Cover for a range of popular services that suit your lifestyle.
$ 22.80
per week
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Silver Hospital & Bronze Extras Set Benefits

Moderate cover. Includes private hospital with some exclusions. Includes cover for preventative dental.
$ 26.40
per week
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Bronze Hospital & Bronze Extras Set Benefits

Entry level hospital cover. Includes preventative dental and optical.
$ 19.10
per week
Select

Bronze Hospital & Silver Extras Set Benefits

Entry level cover. Cover for a range of popular services that suit your lifestyle.
$ 22.80
per week
Select

Silver Hospital & Bronze Extras Set Benefits

Moderate cover. Includes private hospital with some exclusions. Includes cover for preventative dental.
$ 26.40
per week
Select

* The price shown is per week and applies to a Single living in VIC with a $500 excess. It excludes LHC loading and includes a Base Tier Government Rebate

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In Australia, Medicare provides comprehensive coverage for most costs related to pregnancy. Medicare is Australia's public health care provider. Many women elect to use the public health system throughout their pregnancy and delivery. For most healthy women, pregnancy is quite simple and uncomplicated. Experienced midwives in public hospitals are ready to help you in your pre-natal visits. They also are there to assist during delivery time. All you need to do is book in to the public hospital that is most accessible to you.

A private health care policy for pregnancy however allows you greater flexibility. Private insurance coverage allows you to choose your preferred doctors throughout your pregnancy. This is not the case if you decide to be covered by Medicare only for the duration of your pregnancy. In the public health system, it is likely each of your visits to the public hospital would be with a different health professional.

Private health care coverage becomes more beneficial in the case of additional or unexpected medical expenses related to your pregnancy. It is therefore always recommended to consider private health insurance coverage.

So what is the best private health insurance for your pregnancy needs? What factors should you consider before committing to a particular health care policy?

The first thing to remember is that you should take out a private health care policy including pregnancy coverage before you plan to fall pregnant. This is because most health funds have a 12-month waiting period before you can benefit from their pregnancy coverage. Waiting periods are important. They protect members of an insurance fund by making sure that individuals are not making large claims shortly after joining and then immediately cancelling their memberships.

Twelve months is the maximum waiting period set for obstetrics care. Private health insurance funds are quite strict about this rule. You must therefore plan well in advance. It is important to also make sure you are eligible to claim the full benefits of your private health care needs once you need them for your pregnancy.

In choosing your health insurance you should also check with their agreements with your hospital of choice. This is because some health care covers pay only restricted benefits. This is true particularly with less expensive policies. Some only provide coverage for you as a private patient in a public but not in a private hospital.

Finally, you need to understand the rules of your policy in case you need to make changes in your coverage after the birth of your baby. Establish whether it would be easier and more beneficial if you had family or joint couples coverage instead of individual coverage.

Depending on the rules of your insurance policy, you might need to include your baby to your cover even before he or she is born. Always check the fine print to be sure. Doing adequate research ensures that you go through your pregnancy happy and worry-free with the best private health insurance policy.