The Australian Health System

Australia’s health system comprises a mix of public and private providers, which together deliver a range of services and achieve outstanding health outcomes for the country.

Private health insurance is a vital element of Australia’s health mix and an important contributor to the country’s health outcomes. Health spending in Australia accounts for 9.1 per cent of GDP, slightly below the OECD average of 9.3 per cent. This is coupled with superior health outcomes such as increased average life expectancy of 82, which is among the highest in the OECD.

More than 47 per cent of Australians have private health insurance for basic hospital cover and as much as 55 per cent have ancillary or extras cover for services such as dental, optical or physio. About 41 per cent of all procedures occurred in one of Australia’s many private hospitals where patients receive quick access to quality treatment.

Private health insurance guarantees timely access to a wide range of doctors and specialists, private hospitals and services. Private health insurance gives Australians greater choice and flexibility in managing their health.

The Australian Government encourages individuals, couples and families to take out private health insurance through a range of incentives. For further information on private health insurance, including incentives see

For further information about private health insurance in Australia see hirmaa’s PHI: The Facts

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