QUICK GUIDE: Could getting private hospital cover help save you at tax time?


The Federal Government incentivises Australians for having private hospital insurance in recognition you are investing in your own health care, while contributing to a sustainable Australian health care system by helping take pressures off public hospitals and surgery waiting lists.

Private Hospital cover not only helps provide you with greater choice of care and access to shorter waiting times, but hospital cover could mean you’re paying less at tax time.

What is the Medicare Levy Surcharge?

If you don't have private health insurance, and earn above a certain income, you might be paying the MLS – and it could be costing you extra in tax.

The Medicare Levy Surcharge is an additional surcharge that is generally payable by Australian taxpayers who do not maintain a sufficient level of private hospital cover and who earn more than $90,000 as an individual or $180,000 as a couple or family.

Depending on your income, the rate at which the MLS may be payable ranges from 1% to 1.5%.

What if I earn less than $90,000?

You may not be liable for the Medicare Levy Surcharge if you earn less than $90,000.

But having private hospital cover may help you avoid hospital surgery waiting lists and minimise out of pocket costs for dental, physiotherapy, optical and other health providers.

Private health insurance rebate?

The private health insurance rebate is an initiative where the Federal Government contributes to the cost of your private health insurance if your income is $140,000 or less as a single person, or $280,000 or less as a family (unless you have two or more children).

If you are eligible to claim the private health insurance rebate, you can choose to claim the rebate either in your annual tax return or as an automatic reduction to your insurance premiums.

How much is the private health insurance rebate?

The private health insurance rebate can be up to a third of your premium, depending on your income, age, relationship and family situation.

You can choose to either claim the rebate in your annual tax return or as an automatic reduction to your insurance premiums.

How do I qualify for a private health Insurance rebate?

You may be eligible to claim the private health insurance rebate if you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident, are eligible for Medicare and your income is $140,000 or less as a single, or $280,000 or less as a family (the family income threshold is increased by $1,500 for each dependent child after the first child).

Why do I get a rebate if I have private health insurance?

Australia’s mixed public-private health system has long been considered one of the best in the world.

Rebates contribute to keeping private health insurance more affordable for many Australians and keeping the industry sustainable by attracting new members with policies that are right for their health care needs and stage-of-life.

Private hospitals and private health insurance also help reduce the pressures on the public system, meaning better accessibility for everyone if more people are able to afford private cover.

How can I reduce the cost of my premium?                     

Private health insurance policy costs can vary significantly depending on your cover level however Bupa is committed to offering policies that suit a wide range of budgets.

We can help you undertake a cover review to make sure you are receiving the appropriate cover for your budget, stage-of-life and healthcare needs.

How can I check if I may be able to save at tax time?

Use our tax calculator to see if you'd pay less tax by having hospital cover.

Where can I access my tax statement?

This financial year (2021-22) customers can access their tax statements directly via their myBupa inbox. Customer tax statements will be available in myBupa by early July.

Customers will also receive a text message notification letting them know that their tax information is available in myBupa.

For more information about tax and rebates, please visit:

Bupa tax calculator and six-minute cover assessment

 Bupa’s Tax Hub

ATO website for more information about the MLS

ATO website for more information about the private health insurance rebate