Queensland Country Health Fund Review

Queensland Country Health was founded in 1977, under the name of MIM Employees' Health Society.

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by Gary Andrews

Last update 15 Apr 2021

Overview

In 1999 they merged with Queensland Country Credit Union to form Queensland Country Health.

The fund's parent company is Queensland Country Bank.

With a head office in Townsville, it's the only fund based in regional Queensland, with almost 60,000 members and has a strong focus on providing health cover for its home state, as well as the Northern Territory.

The fund has two hospital packages - a Bronze Plus or Silver Plus hospital plan - and four extras policies.

There's also age-based discounts.

Better Hospital Silver Plus members can access Care Navigation, a service that provides extra support from registered nurses immediately after a hospital stay.

Key Points

Six regional centres in north Queensland.
Up to 10% discount for 18-29 year-olds.
Also operates the Territory Health Fund, specifically for residents of the Northern Territory.

Queensland Country Health is not on our panel but we're confident we can still find you a great deal on your health insurance.

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Hospital cover

Nobody chooses to go to hospital.

But when you do, hospital cover will help you get the treatment you need, where and when you want it.

It also helps to pay the bills, as fees for hospital rooms and specialists can add up.

Think about what services you're likely to need, in line with your budget.

If you earn over $90,000 individually or $180,000 as a couple, you could avoid paying the Medicare Levy Surcharge.

Queensland Country Health keeps it simple with two hospital plans with a choice of excess options.

Their top cover is a Silver Plus policy that includes pregnancy.

Vital Hospital (Bronze Plus)

Mid-level private hospital cover designed for healthy young singles, couples and families on a budget. Choose an excess of $250, $500 or $750.

Key inclusions:

  • Rehabilitation
  • Diabetes management
  • Joint reconstructions
  • Hernia and appendix

Better hospital (Silver Plus)

Queensland Country Health's top level of cover.

Cover includes pregnancy and birth services, so this plan is suitable if you're starting or growing your family.

Hospital psychiatric services are restricted and weight-loss surgery isn't included.

Key inclusions:

  • Pregnancy and birth
  • Assisted reproductive services
  • Heart and vascular system
  • Cataracts

Ambulance Cover

Emergency ambulance cover is included on all hospital policies after a one-day waiting period.

Extras cover

From dental, to optical, to chiro and more, extras insurance helps cover the bills for routine treatments with rebates of up to 100%.

While we've summarised the key points of each plan below, it's always worth digging a little deeper into any gap fees, how much you can claim back, and whether your preferred healthcare provider, such as your local dentist, has an agreement with the health fund.

Take the time to work out what you need and what you're prepared to pay.

If this feels a bit overwhelming, you can speak to one of our experts who can talk you through what's included in each extras policy.

Queensland Country Health offers four extras policies to suit a range of budgets and life stages, including one package specifically targeted at the under 30s.

Extras reset each year on the anniversary of the date you joined the fund.

Young Extras

This package is designed for young, healthy people under the age of 30.

A number of items are excluded, but it does have a $500 combined annual limit for general dental and limited major dental services.

Select Extras

A value extras package aimed towards younger singles, couples and families.

A number of services are excluded, making this a useful package for people on a budget.

There's generous general and major dental limits and a $245 limit on frames and contact lenses.

Essential Extras

This covers everything that the top tier Premium Extras package covers, and can only be taken out alongside hospital cover.

There's a $900 limit on general and major dental per person, while remedial massage, psychology and podiatry are all included.

Premium Extras

Queensland Country Health's top extras package with higher annual limits than the Essential Extras.

You'll also need to take out hospital cover to access this policy. General and major dental has a $1,400 limit per person.

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Waiting periods

To stop people signing up, claiming, then cancelling their health insurance, all insurers apply waiting periods.

Generally, the more expensive the treatment, the longer you'll wait.

But keep an eye out for special deals with waiting periods reduced or waived.

Vital Hospital (Bronze Plus)

  • 2 months -- rehabilitation, psychiatric and palliative care (even for a pre-existing condition)
  • 2 months -- all other hospital treatments
  • 12 months -- all other pre-existing conditions

Better Hospital (Silver Plus)

  • 2 months -- rehabilitation, psychiatric and palliative care (even for a pre-existing condition)
  • 2 months -- all other hospital treatments
  • 12 months -- pregnancy and birth
  • 12 months -- mechanical aids and appliances
  • 12 months -- hearing aids
  • 12 months -- nursing services
  • 12 months -- all other pre-existing conditions
  • 12 months -- mammograms and bone density tests

Member benefits

Better Hospital Silver Plus members can access Care Navigation, a service that provides extra support from registered nurses, immediately after a hospital stay.

All regional Queensland members can access discounted accommodation in Brisbane and Townsville, after two months of membership.

If you have an Essential or Premium Extras policy, you'll receive an annual increase in your limits for dental care.

And all extras policies come with the Healthy Living Benefit, with up to $150 per person per year for health programs, including weight management, quit smoking and more.

How to claim

Claim on the spot through the HICAPS payment system at your provider, or through the Queensland Country Health Fund Mobile app or online.

You can also claim by email or post your claim form.

Hospital agreements

Queensland Country Health has agreements with most private hospitals and day clinics across Australia.

When comparing policies, it's worth checking if your local hospitals and clinics are covered. Our specialists at Compare Club can do this for you.

Find a hospital near you

Customer service

Queensland Country Health only received 1 complaint from 1 July to 30 September 2020.

That's just over 0% of complaints vs 0.4% market share, indicating customer service could be outstanding.

Source: Private Health Ombudsman

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FAQs

Is Queensland Country Health a not-for-profit fund?

Yes, the fund is not-for-profit.

Who can apply? Are there any restrictions?

There are no restrictions on joining.

Is it easy to switch to Queensland Country Health?

Queensland Country Health isn't on our panel but we're confident we can find you a great deal on your health insurance.

You'll need to contact Queensland Country Health health directly if you're interested in switching to one of their policies.

Do I need to re-serve waiting periods?

You can switch to an equivalent or lower level of cover without re-serving waiting periods.

You will only be required to serve waiting periods if you have upgraded to a higher level of cover.

Can I change my level of cover?

Yes, you can choose a lower or higher level of cover to suit your different life stages.

If you move to a higher level of cover, you will usually need to serve waiting periods on the extra services and/or higher benefits.

Do I get the government rebate?

For every dollar of private health insurance premiums, the Australian Government provides eligible Australians with a rebate of up to 33.4% (depending on your age and income).

Do I have to pay the Lifetime Health Cover loading?

If you're 31 or over, you usually need to pay 2% loading for each year you've gone without health cover since the 1st July following your 31st birthday.

You can find out more here.

When do extras reset?

Extras reset on the anniversary of your joining date each year.

What age are children covered up to?

Queensland Country Health allows all children to stay on family policies up to the age of 21.

If they're studying full time, dependents can be covered as a student under a family policy up to the age of 25.

Selected policies will allow children as adult dependents up until the age of 25.

Children must not be married or living in a de facto relationship.

Read our guide to learn more.

How do I contact Queensland Country Health?

Visit queenslandcountry.health or call 1800 813 415

Who underwrites the health policies?

Queensland Country Health is a government registered health insurer.

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This guide is opinion only and should not be taken as medical or financial advice. Check with a financial professional before making any decisions.