What changes are being made to natural therapies on Extras Cover?

There will be changes to the way that natural therapies are covered by private health insurance funds from 1 April 2019

From 1 April 2019 the following natural therapies will be removed from HIF's Extras Covers: homeopathy, naturopathy, Pilates, and yoga.

What does this mean?

This means no benefits will paid towards these services from April 1 2019. 

Why is this important?

A review chaired by the former Commonwealth Chief Medical Officer found there is no clear evidence demonstrating the efficacy of the listed natural therapies. This review was undertaken by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), which was tasked with reviewing scientific literature examining the effectiveness and, where available, the safety and cost effectiveness of 17 natural therapies. These reviews were conducted in line with NHMRC’s approach to assessing evidence. The NHMRC reviews were undertaken for the specific purpose of informing the Australian Government’s Natural Therapies Review. Changing coverage for the listed natural therapies will ensure taxpayer funds are spent appropriately and are not directed to therapies that do not demonstrate evidence of clinical efficacy.

Who will benefit?

Around 55 per cent of the Australian population hold a level of Extras Cover Insurance. Changing coverage for the listed natural therapies will remove costs from the system and contribute to reducing private health insurance premium growth.

What impact will this change have on private health insurance?

This change will contribute to reducing private health insurance premium price increases.


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