Major changes to HBF dental implants rebates from January 1, 2019

If you’re with HBF and want dental implants, act now!

HBF are drastically reducing the amount of rebate available for dental implant patients. And the difference could affect you by up to almost $1000.

Denture patients will also be affected, to a lesser extent, but rebates could be several hundred dollars less.

Notice

The following information is intended as a guide only for HBF patients. Rebates and annual limits vary, depending on your level of cover – and how many years you have been with the fund. We don’t advise patients rush into procedures unnecessarily, but for some, there may be significant savings if you start treatment before the end of the year. To see if you will be affected by these changes next year, call HBF on 1300 550 296.

Dental implants

Currently, if you get dental implants, you can get from $800 to $1850 rebate per calendar year. (Depending on how long you have been with HBF)

And currently, dental implants are in the “Dental Implants and Orthodontics” category and not “Major Dental “. From 2019, dental implants will be moved to the “Major Dental” category which has an annual limit of up to $878.

> How will this affect me? Example:

2018: You purchase two implants for $3000. You can get up to $1850 back = pay $1150
2019: You purchase two implants for $3000. You can get up to $878 back = pay $2122

“Major Dental” now includes dental implants and other items that dental implant patients often require – crowns, bridges, dentures – and will have an annual limit of $800-$1800. At first, this looks only slightly less than the current limit for major dental. But as it also incorporates dental implants, the annual limit is significantly less.

(Currently, you can receive up to $1850 for implants and $2035 for major dental)

> What should I do?

If you want dental implants, start right now and have your first implant placed before the end of 2018. Depending on your level of cover, you may be able to receive up to $1850. And, you may be able to receive rebates for other item numbers that you may require, such as crowns, dentures or bridges.

Next year, have the remaining part of your treatment and receive the (albeit smaller) 2019 benefit.

> What if I wait?

If you wait and start your dental implant treatment next year, you will receive a far smaller health insurance rebate.

Dentures

Your HBF benefits allowance changes from a percentage of the fee to a set benefit amount, if with a Members’ Plus dentist like Dentistry Plus. For many, this will result in a significantly lower rebate.

> How will this affect me? Example:

2018: You purchase dentures for $2000. You can get 60% back = $1200, pay $800
2019: You purchase dentures for $2000. You can get a set $650 back ($550 less), = pay $1350

ANNUAL LIMITS

Good news for those with HBF for five years or less! The annual limit for major dental (combined dental implants, crowns, dentures) is a little higher than previous years for those that have been with HBF for 5 years or less.

For example, for those with the fund for up to 3 years, the annual limit increase from $500-$800.

This is useful if you need other dental procedures, such as a crown or implant.

If you have been a member for over 10 years, however, the annual limits decreased from $2035 to $1800.

> What should I do?

If appropriate for you, we recommend you purchase your new dentures or partial dentures before the end of the year. However, figures vary, depending on the level of cover and the amount of time you’ve been with your health fund. Call HBF on 1300 550 296 to see if you will be affected by next year’s changes.

> What if I wait?

If you wait and have your dentures created next year, it’s likely you’ll receive a smaller health insurance rebate. (Approx. $500, depending on your level of cover)

Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

Book and appointment today or contact us to learn more