What is the difference between public and private hospitals?

Because our public health system is free, it gets very busy.

Which means, for conditions that aren’t considered emergencies, you can end up waiting a long time for treatment.

When you do have treatment, you have little choice in where or when it is performed, or who performs it.

One reason why private hospitals exist is to provide a more immediate option for people who don't want to join a waiting list.

The benefit of using a private hospital is you choose your own doctor and are treated when it suits you. The downside to private hospitals is that they can be expensive.

If I have private hospital cover why would I want to go publicly?

As a tax payer you pay to use the public system too, so it’s up to you whether you go private or public based on your condition.

If your condition is classed as an emergency where you’ll be treated straight away and you don’t mind what doctor treats you, then there’s no real reason to not use the public system.

But if your condition or ailment isn’t classed as an emergency you may want to use your private health insurance to give you a quicker treatment option with a doctor that you choose.