Health Insurance with Chiropractic Cover

26 February 2018
Have back and neck pain? Constantly suffer from headaches and migraines? Some people swear by chiropractic healthcare – but is it covered under your insurance?

It’s estimated one in five Australians are dealing with chronic and persistent pain on a daily basis. This figure rises to one in three for those over the age of 65.

When performed correctly by a qualified practitioner, chiropractic healthcare can be beneficial for some people with neuro-musculoskeletal conditions and chronic pain.

Highest rated health insurance policies with chiropractic cover

The table below shows a selection of some of the highest rated hospital and extras policies on Canstar’s database, sorted by Star Rating (highest to lowest). These results are based on cover for a New South Wales couple born in 1980.

What is a chiropractor?

A chiropractor is a health care professional who uses their hands (or an instrument) to address musculoskeletal problems along the spine, maintain healthy spine function and treat health conditions related to the joints, muscles or bones. Generally, people could consider visiting a chiropractor if they experience any of the following:

  • Back pain
  • Neck pain
  • Headaches/migraines
  • Whiplash
  • Work and sports-related injuries
  • Arthritis
  • Restricted movement in the back, shoulders, neck or limbs

If you don’t have any of these symptoms now but have a reasonable chance of experiencing them in the near future, you may want to consider a policy offering you the ability to claim some or all costs from seeking treatment from a recognised chiropractor.

What is chiropractic cover?

Some health insurance policies with extras include cover for chiropractic services, offered within over 98% of hospital and extras packages in our database, including over 370 policies in New South Wales alone. The amount you can claim for will depend on your policy and you should check your Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) to understand the total you can claim back.

You should also be aware there are various limits that can apply to extras policies – sometimes a limit per service, year or lifetime. Waiting periods can also apply. It is worth noting some policies also group treatments together, such as physiotherapy, chiropractic and acupuncture when calculating the total you can claim back (e.g. some may offer $200 cover annually for these treatments combined).

It is always a good idea to do your homework by checking a chiropractor’s qualification, experience and reputation before booking in a treatment.

Unless you are seeking treatment under Medicare’s Chronic Disease Management program, or through the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, you do not usually need a referral to see a chiropractor.

What chiropractic costs can I claim on Medicare?

Currently, Medicare does not provide benefits for chiropractic services, however it does cover examinations such as x-rays which can be used in conjunction with chiropractic services.

If you’re covered under Medicare’s Chronic Disease Management program and have a chronic or terminal medical condition, you may be eligible to receive benefits towards your chiropractic treatment – this must first be discussed with your General Practitioner (GP).

Can I claim on chiropractic cover?

In order to claim on chiropractic cover, you’ll need an extras policy that includes it.

How to claim

Most registered chiropractors will have a HICAPS machine – an electronic system that can usually process your private health insurance claim on the spot. If this is the case, you will typically only have to pay the difference between the amount your provider covers and the total bill.

If your chiropractor does not have a HICAPS machine, they will usually print out a receipt that you can then use to submit a claim to your private health insurer. You will have to pay the full cost of your treatment at the time and will receive a sum back depending on your level of cover.

How you submit a claim depends on the provider you’re with. Some companies have apps that can take a photo of your receipt while others have to be visited in branch. Make sure you’re familiar with how your insurer’s claims process works prior to receiving your treatment.

Compare health insurance

Whether you’ve decided to find health insurance with chiropractic cover or simply aren’t happy with your current health insurer, Canstar compares hospital and extras policies from over 21 providers. Start comparing today.


Share this article