Private health insurers review their products and pricing every year on 1 April.

In 2020, in response to the Coronavirus pandemic, we deferred this rate review until 1 October to provide our members with some financial relief.

It was part of a package of measures we put in place to support our members during what we are sure is a year none of us will ever forget.

Delayed premium increases

Our immediate response to the COVID-19 crisis was to delay our annual 1 April rate rise for six months, an acknowledgement that the pandemic would put many of our members under financial pressure. This has resulted in financial relief totalling $3M for our more than 81,000 members.

With rate change now scheduled for 1 October, we’ve reviewed our pricing to ensure we can continue to pay great benefits while providing value for money, fair prices and incomparable service for our members.

At Latrobe, for every dollar we receive in premiums, we return 92c as benefits to our members. To ensure we can continue to provide value for money, we have to make sure our quality products are fairly priced.

Why are premiums reviewed annually?

The private health industry reviews its premiums to ensure that the benefits it pays to its members keep pace with the rising cost of health care – new technologies and techniques, an ageing population and a high incidence of chronic diseases all play their part in these rising costs.

Will my premiums go up?

The emphasis on value for money and fair pricing means that, on average, we’re increasing our premiums on hospital and extras cover by 3.49% on 1 October. But while some of our products will increase in price, many will remain the same. You will be notified in writing of any changes to your rates.

How can I lock in my current rate?

Pre-pay your premiums for up to 12 months and your pricing will remain unchanged for the duration.

How do Latrobe’s premiums stack up?

A comparison of premiums* with some of our major competitors - for-profit and not-for-profit providers Australian Unity, HBF, HCF, BUPA and Medibank – reveals our pricing is, on average, up to $34 a month cheaper.

And it’s important to note that we’ve used the pricing we’ll apply after rate change as compared to our competitors’ existing prices – which means that even if our competitors don’t change their premium prices on 1 October, our members are still winning.

*This price comparison is based on the average monthly premium for a single person in Victoria before any rebates and loading.

Do I need to do anything?

No. During September you’ll be advised in writing if your premiums are increasing or staying the same, and the changes will be applied automatically from 1 October.

If your circumstances have changed or you’re not sure that you have the right cover, now is a great time to review your cover. You can review your cover online or call one of our friendly Member Experience Consultants on 1300 362 144 to discuss your options.

How else is Latrobe supporting members?

As a not-for-profit health insurer, we’re here for our members. We’ve recognised that this year, it’s more important than ever to stand by our members and support their health.

In addition to delaying premium increases, we’ve put in place measures to support members facing financial stress and to ensure we continue to deliver great value for money. These include:

  • Additional postponement of rate rise for members on JobSeeker or JobKeeper – you can apply to have your premium increases deferred for an additional six months, to 1 April 2021 (download the JobKeeper JobSeeker Deferral Application Form)
  • Hardship suspensions - members doing it particularly tough can apply to suspend premium payments or downgrade their cover temporarily. We’ve already supported 600 of our members in this way (download the Hardship Application Form)
  • Telehealth benefits - coverage for extras services delivered via telephone or video-conferencing
  • Cover for Coronavirus-related hospital admissions, no matter what level of hospital cover you are on.

Read more about our COVID-19 member support package and hardship provisions.

Community support – another great reason to choose Latrobe

Acknowledging the increased pressures placed on families and the communities this year, we donated $1M to family violence and youth mental health support.

Our donation comprised $300,000 to family service organisation Berry Street and $350,000 each to Quantum Support Services and Anglicare. You can read more about these donations here.

Yes, you are with the health fund with heart.

What next?

If you’re unsure about whether your cover is still right for you, rate change is a great time to review your cover. As always, we’re here to help – if you’d like a chat with one of our friendly Member Experience Consultants give us a call on 1300 362 144.