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Reviewed and updated 26 March 2024

About HBF

What is HBF?

HBF Insurance is a private health insurer that operates as an open health fund

Background

HBF was established in Western Australia (WA) in 1941 and was originally called the Metropolitan Hospital Benefit Fund. Its objective was to help Western Australians pay the cost of hospital treatment. 

When it extended its cover to all hospitals in WA in 1945, the fund changed its name to Hospital Benefits Fund. In 2000, it became HBF. 

In 2021, HBF purchased for-profit insurer CUA Health (now see-u), so it could develop a solid base in Queensland and expand across Australia.

With over a million members nationally, HBF is the fourth-largest health fund and the second-largest not-for-profit insurer in Australia. 

Who can join HBF?

Anyone can join HBF because it is an open insurer.

What products does HBF offer?

HBF offers:

Do HBF policies include Ambulance Cover?

HBF includes emergency Ambulance Cover with:

  • Hospital Cover
  • Extras Cover
  • Combined Hospital and Extras Cover. 

This covers only urgent ambulance transport by road not by sea or air.


Is HBF a not-for-profit health insurer?

Yes. HBF is a not-for-profit health insurer.


Does HBF operate in all Australian states and territories?

Yes. HBF operates in all Australian states and territories.


How does HBF Hospital Cover compare with other insurers?

BenchmarksHBFIndustry average
Member retention for Hospital Cover92.3%88.6%
% hospital-related charges covered94.4%90.6%

Source: Private Health Insurance Ombudsman: State of the Health Funds Report: 2022


Does HBF have agreements with some private hospitals or day hospitals to provide services at low cost or with no out-of-pocket costs?

Yes. HBF has agreements with a few private hospitals that allow it to provide services to its members at low cost or with no out-of-pocket costs:

LocationNumber of private Agreement HospitalsIndustry maximum
ACT56
NSW9798
NT22
QLD5160
SA2023
TAS59
VIC7476
WA2124

HBF also has agreements with a number of day hospitals so it can provide services at low cost or with no out-of-pocket costs:

LocationNumber of day Agreement Hospitals Industry maximum
ACT89
NSW87103
NT12
QLD4857
SA2530
TAS68
VIC6779
WA1924

Source: HBF: performance


How does HBF Extras Cover compare with other insurers?

BenchmarkHBFIndustry average
% Extras Cover charges covered56.3%52.0%

Source: Private Health Insurance Ombudsman: State of the Health Funds Report: 2022


How does HBF compare with other private health insurers?

BenchmarksHBF Industry average
Market share7.3%
% services with no gap92.8%88.8%
% services with no gap or where known gap payment made99.8%97.4%
Market share of complaints to the PHIO5.9%
% complaints investigated by the PHIO4.9%
Benefits as a % of contributions88.1%83.1%
Management expenses as a % of contribution income14.7%9.9%
Management expenses per average policy$495$375

Source: Private Health Insurance Ombudsman: State of the Health Funds Report: 2022


Is HBF a member of any industry associations?

Yes. HBF is a member of Private Healthcare Australia (PHA), a body that represents 20 registered health insurers and 97% of people covered by private health insurance.

It is also a member of the Members Health Fund Alliance, an alliance of not-for-profit, member-owned, regional or community-based health insurers.


Does HBF let me claim online or via an app?

Yes. HBF allows you to make a claim via its online portal, myHBF, and via its mobile app


How to contact HBF

Phone:

133 423

Website:

https://www.hbf.com.au 

Email:

via online form

Address Head Office:

570 Wellington Street
Perth WA 6000

Postal address:

GPO Box C101
Perth WA 6839


Compare HBF with other private health insurers

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