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What to do in an emergency

Just as you would in a car accident; if you have a medical emergency make sure you and anyone you’re with are safe, call an ambulance if you need to, and then call your insurer (that’s us) as soon as you can. We can step you through your options, help you avoid extra costs and take some of the stress out of finding a specialist.

Call an ambulance it you need one

All of our health covers include emergency ambulance and only have a one-day waiting period, so you’ll more than likely be covered if you need an urgent trip to the emergency department.

When you are at the hospital

Be ready to show your Medicare and nib cards

When you go to hospital it’s quite common for a nurse or admin staff member to ask for your Medicare and nib cards. Even if you aren’t admitted or don’t use your health insurance, you’ll probably still need to show your cards.

Am I a public or private patient?

When you go to hospital, you have the choice to be treated as a public or private patient if you have private health insurance. In some cases if you need immediate treatment, you may be treated as a public patient so that the hospital’s emergency team can take care of you straight away.

If you’re not critically injured and have time to make some decisions, you can review your treatment and specialist options as a private patient. Check how using your health insurance may benefit you and if there are any costs involved with your treatment (known as out of pocket expenses).

Getting a referral

Depending on your injury, you may be given a referral to see a specialist for further examination and treatment. If you decide to use your health insurance for this, you will have more options in choosing the specialist you see. You can do research to find a surgeon that has a lot of experience and good recommendations or find one in a location closer to you.

Call us on 13 16 42 to discuss your options or use our going to hospital tool to check the cost of your procedure, or to find a specialist.

Seeing a specialist

If you plan on using your private health insurance, you should ask your specialist about any additional costs that may be involved with your procedure (these costs are usually outside of what nib can cover, and are known as an out of pocket cost).

Ask your specialist if any of the following people will be involved in your procedure and what their costs are:

  • Anaesthetist
  • Assistant surgeon
  • Specialist consultations
  • Other clinicians

During your appointment, you can also ask other questions about your treatment before, during and after surgery. We’ve created a list of questions to ask your specialist on our Choosing a specialist page.

If you have any questions we’re always here to help, call us on 13 16 42.

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