rt health fund review


rt health is a not-for-profit fund, profits are reinvested into the business to benefit its members and were bought out by HCF in November 2021.

rt health offers five hospital plans, starting with two Bronze Plus plans through to a premium Gold plan.

Three extras policies are also available.

All hospital plans come with a free Hospital at Home program, along with a chronic disease prevention and management program.

Key Points

  • Never pay excess on your hospital cover if your dependent children have to go to hospital.

  • Cover for kids up to the age of 25.

  • Freedom to choose as you’re able to choose your doctor or surgeon who treats you in hospital

rt health isn't on our panel but we're confident we can get you a great deal on your health cover.


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.

rt Health offers five hospital policies, ranging from Basic to Gold.

Basic Plus Public Hospital

A budget-friendly plan that covers you as a private patient in a public hospital. Allows you to choose your own doctor in a public hospital.

Key inclusions:

  • Public hospital of your choice

  • Emergency ambulance cover

  • Restricted access to all hospital cover items

Bronze Plus First Start Hospital

A more comprehensive entry-level plan with a lot of inclusions. It's a policy that's likely to appeal to younger, healthier Australians. This policy comes with a $350 or $700 hospital excess.

Key inclusions:

  • Dental surgery

  • Gynaecology

  • Hernia and appendix

Bronze Plus Step Up Hospital

Mid-level cover for singles, couples, and families. It's more akin to a Silver policy and has a large number of inclusions. This policy comes with a $350 or $700 hospital excess.

Key inclusions:

  • Back, neck and spine

  • Lung and chest

  • Insulin pumps

Silver Plus Smart Hospital No Pregnancy

Offers comprehensive hospital cover that excludes pregnancy, birth, and weight loss surgery. This policy comes with a $500 or $750 hospital excess.

Key inclusions:

  • Heart and vascular system

  • Joint replacements

  • Dialysis for chronic kidney failure

Gold Premium Hospital

Top level of cover with no exclusions. Includes pregnancy and birth, so this plan is popular with people planning on starting or growing a family. This policy comes with a $250, $500 or $750 hospital excess.

Key inclusions:

  • Assisted reproductive services

  • Pregnancy and birthing

  • Rehabilitation

Ambulance cover

Emergency ambulance cover is included on all hospital policies after a one-day waiting period. In some states, ambulance transport is unlimited -contact us for details.

Extras cover

RT Health Fund’s extras reset on January 1 every year.

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 rt Health’s extra cover below, it’s always worth taking a closer look at potential gap fees, how much you can claim back, and whether your preferred healthcare provider is recognised by 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, our experts are here to help.

rt health offers three extras policies.

Value Extras

Value Extras provides a wide range of benefits including dental, physio, optical and natural therapies.

Key inclusions:

  • General dental

  • Optical

  • Dietetics 

Smart Extras

Smart Extras cover orthodontic treatment, major dental, podiatry and more. You can also get 100% back on optical.

Key inclusions:

  • Hearing aids

  • Acupuncture and remedial massage

  • Speech therapy

Premium Extras

Premium Extras is the top level of extras cover offered by rt Health. It is the only extras cover that offers benefits for orthodontics and offers unlimited dental.

Key inclusions:

  • 100% back on your gym membership

  • Hydrotherapy

  • Speech therapy


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.

Hospital waiting periods

  • 12 months for pre-existing conditions, pregnancy and birth

  • 2 months for hospital psychiatric services, rehabilitation, and palliative care as well as general services, and assisted reproductive services

  • 1 day for accidents

Extra waiting periods

  • 24 months for hearing aids

  • 12 months for major dental, orthodontics, orthotics, repairs to hearing aids, wheelchair hire, and low vision aids

  • 3 months for optical

  • 2 months for general dental and all other health services

Member benefits

rt Health is a part of all hospital plans and includes free health management programs.

There's Hospital at Home, to help you get home from the hospital sooner, plus a chronic disease prevention and management program, to help with conditions like asthma and heart disease.

There’s also access to Pulse Newsletter, Be Well magazine, and Stay Well blog.

How to claim

Claim on the spot through the HICAPS app or payment system at your provider.

Hospital agreements

rt Health has agreements with a large number of hospital and day surgery providers across Australia.

When comparing policies, it’s worth checking if your preferred local hospitals and clinics are covered.

Our specialists at Compare Club can do this for you.

Customer service

rt Health received 0.4% of complaints in 2021, and has a market share of <0.5%^.



 1. Is rt Health a not-for-profit fund?

rt Health is a restricted not-for-profit fund.

2. Who can apply? Are there restrictions?

rt Health was initially established to serve members of the Australian transport and energy workers community and merged with HCF on November 1, 2021.

3. Is it easy to switch to rt Health?

rt Health isn’t on our panel so you’ll need to contact them directly to switch. We’re confident the Compare Club team can find you a great deal from the insurers on our panel.

4. Do I need to re-serve waiting periods?

If you switch to an equivalent or lower level of cover, you generally won’t have to serve new waiting periods. However, you may need to serve new waiting periods if your new policy includes additional services or higher benefits

5. Can I change my level of cover?

Yes, you can choose a lower or higher level of cover.

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

6. 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). To learn what you’re entitled to, read our rebate guide.

7. 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 hospital cover since the 1st July following your 31st birthday. You can find out more here.

8. Up to what age are children covered?

Children are automatically covered under family cover until the day before they turn 21.

If they are full-time students, they’ll be covered until the day before they turn 25 or cease full-time study (whichever comes first) at no extra cost.


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

^Private Health Ombudsman, rt health, accessed 13 January 2022.