PHI members with hospital cover dwindle to 44%

Private health insurance (PHI) members with with hospital cover continue to dwindle, particularly younger members, the latest APRA figures for the year ended December 2019 show.

Overall hospital cover fell across all states and territories to 44% of the population – down from 44.7% in December 2018.

Hospital membership showed a 0.1% decline overall, to 11.23m. In particular, there were general decreases among younger age groups which was not offset by increases among older age groups over the year.

The biggest percentage decline was in the 25-29 age group, down 4.1%, while the biggest volume decline was in the 30-34 age group, down 22,797. The biggest volume increase was among 75-79 year olds at 22,259 in all.

ACT reported the highest share of hospital memberships at 54.2% of the population, followed by WA, 53.8%; and NSW, 45.5%. NT had the smallest share of hospital memberships at 37.9%.