Private Health Insurance for over 31 Years of Age

Just wondering if anyone knows what happens with Medicare levy surcharge. Turned 31, approaching 32 soon.
What’s a cheap hospital cover to offset Medicare levy surcharge? Thanks.


  • +2

    When you hit 31, for every year you don't get PHI you get a 2% extra loading thing that goes away after 10 years of PHI.

    Basically what that does is if you're meant to pay $1000/year, for every year you didn't get PHI after 31, you have to pay an extra 2%. So $1020 if you get it at 32 instead of $1000. This goes towards the PHI fund.

    MLS is always the same (90k+/180k+ family) % IF you don't get any PHI. This is paid towards the ATO when you do your taxes - it is pro-rata'd by the number of days where you don't have a valid PHI cover.

    I just went with whatever was the cheapest, non-profit & covered the MLS at the time (HIF). Might not be cheapest anymore though just check online.

  • +1

    Government actually compares all the private health care plans for you


    is a good website to help.

    The levy is based on your income (at the moment the threshold is 90k but it changes), the loading is based on age and they are separate things.

    From a purely financial perspective it is not always a saving to buy now to avoid the loading later - it only lasts 10 years. Of course if you have any health conditions you might not just be considering finances.

    • Thanks so much for this! That website has given me some perspective as I don't earn over 90k unfortunately.

  • What’s a cheap hospital cover to offset Medicare levy surcharge?

    Don't get cheap (basic) cover as they pay jack sh*t when you claim.

    If you are going to pay decent cash for PHI, at least get intermediate or top cover otherwise IMO it is not worth it. ROI

    I am in the same predicament regarding income threshold and although we try to implement legal tax avoidance, but if you do, get real cover.


    • Thanks for the response! Have a good day!

  • i also just turned 31 and was about ask this question, but OP did it for me hah
    this website tells me i don't need to this as i'm earning just under 90k.

    What's is the minimum PHI i need to get to remove this loading? Ambulance cover? private hospital? or General treatments?

    • basic hospital cover is the bare minimum

      • cheapest hospital cover for me is $850/year

        this is just to save the %2 loading that might cost me 20$ more in the future? wtf
        (yes i know it stacks the % but the years i don't have it i save even more)

        • Every year it will increase 2% until it reaches 40% and you got to have PHI for 20 years to induce it back to 0%

          • @SnoozeAndLose: Not sure about 20 years,from the same website. See last sentence

            What's the Lifetime Health Cover loading?

            This is something the government uses to get you to take out cover earlier and stay covered for more of your life. If you take out hospital cover after you turn 31, you'll pay an extra 2% on your premiums (payments) for every year you waited. If you keep it for 10 years, the penalty is removed.

  • I'm also struggling with this issue, how much hospital cover do I need to buy?

    I'm subject to the medicare levy surchage and lifetime health cover loading. ;-(

    Is the Medibank Basic Everyday Starter enough? Why does it cost more if I buy them separately?

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