Lifetime Health Cover

Lifetime Health Cover

Avoid the shock. Lock in the lowest possible premium.

Lifetime Health Cover is a federal government initiative designed to encourage people to take out private hospital cover at a younger age and maintain it throughout their lifetime.

For every year you are over 30 and have no hospital cover, you will pay a 2% Lifetime Health Cover Loading.

You have until 30 June to take out private hospital cover, otherwise you will pay a loading on top of the base cover rate when you join later on in life. The loading is 2% for each year you delay joining, to a maximum of 70%. After 10 continuous years of cover, the loading ceases. The longer you wait to take out health cover, the more the loading increases!

Lifetime Health Cover does not affect everyone.

  • Lifetime Health Cover does not apply to extras cover or Ambulance memberships.
  • If you were born before 1 July 1934 you are not affected and you do not pay a loading.

Special rules apply to people in these categories.

  • Leaving the Australian Armed Services or the Antarctic Division
  • An immigrant or a refugee
  • An ex Norfolk Island resident
  • An Australian citizen but you were overseas when you turned 31
  • No longer entitled to a Veterans' Affairs Gold Card


Contact Latrobe if you are unsure whether you have to pay a loading, need a quote or require further information. Alternatively, visit the Australian Government's Lifetime Health Cover website.


Do you still have questions? Here are some FAQs:


What happens if I lose my job and can't afford to continue cover?

To cover small gaps, you are able to be without hospital cover for periods totalling 1094 days (ie three years less one day) during your lifetime, without affecting your loading.

If you have a gap of 1095 days you will pay a 2% loading. For every 365 days without cover after that, your loading will increase by 2%. If you apply to Latrobe to suspend your cover for a short period, and we agree to this, this period of suspension does not affect your LHC loading (you are considered to be maintaining your cover).

I only have extras cover, does that count?

No. Lifetime Health Cover does not apply to extras products or ambulance cover.

Therefore, you need to take out a private health insurance policy that includes hospital cover in order to be assigned a  “certified age at entry” and  lock in lower premiums for the rest of your life.

I have had continuous private hospital cover since 1/7/2000. Does Lifetime Health Cover affect me?

No, you will continue to enjoy the benefits of the base premium without any penalty loading, so long as you retain your membership.

Does this mean I have to stay with my present health fund?

No, you are free to choose the fund that best suits your needs. You continue to enjoy any rights and entitlements you have already earned, such as waiving of waiting periods when you transfer to a different fund.

I am 30 years old but my partner is 37. How does Lifetime Health Cover affect us?

You will both be assigned a certified joining age. On a couples or family membership the premium charged will be a combined rate that reflects the age of entry of each adult. You will not be allocated a joint entry age. This is how it works:

Let's say the cost of your cover is $1000.

  1. Your certified age of joining is 30 and you pay the base rate of half that premium, ie $500.
  2. Your partner will be assigned a certified joining age of 37 and will pay a loading of 14% on top of the base rate ie $500 + $70 = $570.
  3. The final cost of your couples or family membership would be $500 + $570 = $1070.