Should you get private health insurance for pregnancy?

Co-Author: Elizabeth McLardy

Family health cover may not be something you’ve ever thought about until you see a positive result on a pregnancy test. But planning ahead is essential to avoid waiting periods, so make sure you’ve got the right cover for your future needs.

Planning to have a baby is an exciting time. But it’s also one filled with many questions, some common ones being “Where am I going to have my baby?” and “Will I need family health insurance?” While babies may not be as stressful as one might think, planning for them definitely can be.

Should you get private health insurance before pregnancy?

If you are considering having your baby at a private hospital then make sure you purchase your family’s private health cover before you get pregnant! Most health funds require health insurance for your family to be obtained at least twelve months in advance, so be mindful of that before running off to get family health insurance right this instant.

It’s also critical to compare different family health insurance policies if you want to get the maximum bang for your buck, and make paying the premium worth the (significant) expense.

Health insurance policies in New Zealand may exclude treatment related to pregnancy. This is because if you are a New Zealand resident or citizen then you are entitled to free public healthcare when having a baby, so most health insurance policies don’t cover these costs. However, if you would like access to private or specialist care, this may be included in some health insurance with pregnancy cover. For example, Southern Cross Health Society offers some plans that provide cover for treatment performed by a specialist registered in obstetrics and gynaecology or anaesthesia, as stated on its information sheet.

Health Insurance with pregnancy cover may include the following treatments:

  • antenatal and post-natal consultations
  • caesarean (including elective)
  • charges by a private anaesthetist for administration of epidurals

However, Southern Cross Health Society also lists a number of treatments that are excluded in any health insurance with policy cover.

Health insurance with pregnancy cover excludes treatments such as:

  • Pregnancy related consultations not performed by a specialist registered in obstetrics and gynaecology or anaesthesia.
  • Midwife fees.
  • Fertility treatment or consultations
  • 3D or 4D ultrasounds.

Compare Family Planning Health Insurance

Also consider what kind of excess you can afford to pay; don’t go with a higher excess for a cheaper premium if you won’t be able to pay the excess when it matters!

Overall, it’s important to make sure that the family health cover you end up choosing suits your needs and your budget during pregnancy, for both the delivery and post-delivery.

To check whether you have the right cover for pregnancy, review your extras and make sure you aren’t paying for something you don’t need.

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