The lore about private health insurance and pressure on public hospitals
Australian Health Review
25(6) 72 - 74
Since being elected in 1996,the Coalition government has pursued a raft of policies to increase the proportion of Australians with private health insurance. Against some criteria, these policies have been a success. The proportion of Australians with private health insurance had gradually fallen from around 50%in 1984,to be around 30%in late 1998.With the introduction of a 30%rebate on health insurance, and the introduction of premiums based on a person's age at the time of joining a health fund, coverage rose to 45.9%by September 2000 and has dropped only slightly since (AIHW, 2002). Moreover, the cash reserves of the health insurance companies have improved substantially from the unhealthy levels reported in 1997 (Cormack, 2002). It has also succeeded in giving many more people the ability to make a choice about their health care (Department of Health and Aged Care, 1999).
Full text doi:10.1071/AH020072a
© AHHA 2002