Public vs Private Health Care
When it comes to medical treatment, there are basically two options:
- The Public System (Medicare)
- The Private System
Every Australian is entitled to free treatment in a public hospital under the Medicare system. You will be treated by doctors nominated by the hospital, which may include Dr Ong, who performs operations at both public and private hospitals. You will not, however, be charged for most treatment and care costs. In Western Australia, we are fortunate to have outstanding public hospitals and many doctors who work in private practice also do some sessions in public hospitals because they believe the public system should be supported. If you choose to be a public patient, Medicare will cover the costs of your treatment in a public hospital at no charge, but you cannot choose the doctor who will treat you.
Private health insurance offers coverage for treatment as a private patient in a public or private hospital of your choice, with the doctor of your choosing. Private health insurance offers several advantage including:
- The ability to choose your doctor
- The flexibility to choose your hospital
- Access to private hospitals.
- Shorter waiting times for elective surgery
- Greater flexibility when scheduling elective/semi-elective surgery