Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) commenced on 1 July 2000 as a Commonwealth Government initiative to reward people who maintain hospital cover. LHC recognises the length of time a person has had private hospital cover with a registered health fund. If you start your cover earlier in life and maintain your hospital cover you will pay a lower contribution rate each year compared to someone who starts their cover at a later age.
The main points to remember are:
- People who purchase hospital cover for the first time after 1 July following their 31st birthday will pay a Lifetime Health Cover Loading
- This loading is based on the person’s Lifetime Health Cover Age
- The loading is 2% for each year the person’s Lifetime Health Cover age is over 30 years old
- Once you take out hospital cover, your loading is locked in at the same rate, rather than increasing 2% each year
- The loading only applies to hospital cover
- The maximum loading is 70% which applies to those 65 years or over
- Lifetime Health Cover loadings revert to 0% after 10 years continuous hospital insurance coverage
As of 1 July 2013, the Australian Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance is no longer available for the LHC loading portion of any membership payments (if applicable).