Business

Health rebate will hit hip pocket

Noel Whittaker
Noel Whittaker

HEALTH insurance premiums will rise if the abolition of the rebate for private health insurance makes it through Parliament.

The intention is to increase the Medicare Levy Surcharge to a maximum of 1.5% and reduce the rebate so it cuts out absolutely once income reaches $124,000 for a single or $248,000 for a family. 

Think about a family who earns $165,000 a year and who currently pays $3,000 in private health insurance premiums.  If the proposals become law their rebate will drop from $900 to $600 which means the real cost of their premium goes from $2,100 to $2,400 -an increase of 14.3%. 

Now you may think that is small bikkies for a family on that income, even though they might be trying to educate three children, but it almost certain to be a blow to a budget that is already under pressure from rising interest rates and the ever increasing utility bills.  They probably won't want to be stung with a $1650 surcharge so may well make the expense fit their budget by downgrading their cover.   

According to a report prepared by Deloitte for the Australian Health Insurance Association "significant numbers of consumers will withdraw from their private hospital cover (1.6 million over five years), or downgrade to lower levels of cover (5.7 million consumers over five years) following the proposed changes". 

These changes at the higher end of the income scale will cascade and lead to a general increase in premiums that will hit lower income earners even though they will still be entitled to the rebate.  Many will cancel their private health insurance throwing even more people on the already strained public health system.

Noel Whittaker is a director of Whittaker Macnaught Pty Ltd. His advice is general in nature and readers should seek their own professional advice before making any financial decisions. His email is noel.whittaker@whittakermacnaught.com.au.

Topics:  noel whittaker



Unions take to streets as Sunday penalty rates cut

Retail workers will be among those hit by the changes.

Thousands of lowest paid workers to be hit by changes to pay rates

You're invited to help celebrate Col's last day

Col Green from the South Grafton Ex-Servicemen's Club who are having great success with their tribute shows.

South Services secretary-manager retiring

Local Partners

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

Bride and Prejudice: Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

What's on the big screen this week

Ewan McGregor and Jonny Lee Miller in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

This week's new releases offer plenty of variety for movie buffs.

Yamba show sounds Crazy

GROOVY POP: Crazy Old Maurice is take to the stage at the Pacific Hotel Sunday afternoon.

Newcastle band to bring the house down in Yamba

Bernard, Kasey, Spooky Men, and more this weekend

Mal Eastick returns with his Blues Bar on Sunday at the Yamba Golf Club.

Touring shows bring mix of genres to Clarence

Duo Hard Drive to rock Clocktower Friday

Hard Drive, Stephen Herbert and Dwayne Doyle, who are playing at the Clocktower Hotel this weekend.

Enjoy Hard Drive at the Clocktower this weekend

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Hodges proud to be part of first channel dedicated to NRL

Justin Hodges is gearing up for his new gig on Fox League.

Footy star hopes to provide a voice for players on new NRL channel

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Houses selling like hot cakes

HIGH DEMAND: Maclean Valley 2 Coast principal Ingrid Nott.

Valley's housing market pushed by supply shortage and jobs growth

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!