Many Australians will experience a mental illness in their lifetime and may require medical treatment for their condition. A is a disorder that affects the way a person thinks, feels, behaves and interacts with other people. Depression is one of the most common forms of mental illness, alongside anxiety, eating disorders and schizophrenia.
While many mental health conditions cannot be cured, most can be effectively controlled and treated, allowing the patient to live a normal, high-functioning life. It is important for Australians to stay aware of their mental health as early detection and diagnosis is crucial for effective treatment.
Fortunately, if medical treatment is required, some services and care can be covered by certain private health insurance policies. A private hospital policy should cover the cost of accommodation and a portion of the medical fees charged when you receive psychiatric treatment or drug and alcohol rehabilitation at a private hospital. Some out-of-pocket expenses could still occur, including care required outside of hospital, excesses and co-payments and any health fund ‘gaps’.
Gaps occur when your health fund and Medicare cover the equivalent of the Medicare Benefits Schedule fee but any remaining expense is charged directly to you. Not all hospital policies will give you full access to psychiatric and rehabilitation services, so it is important to make a thorough to ensure the product you choose covers the treatment you need.
Additionally, you may wish to purchase further cover for ‘extras’ or general treatment. Some extras policies will provide cover for psychology services and counselling you receive out of hospital. However, these services are more likely to incur a gap charge. It is therefore important to check with your provider before seeking treatment so you are not surprised by an unexpected out-of-pocket expense.
DT: Many Australians will experience a mental illness in their lifetime. Fortunately private health insurance can help cover treatment expenses.