Below is current information about health, life and travel insurance for people living with HIV (PLHIV). You will find links and resources to information about available insurance cover in Australia to assist PLHIV to have a better understanding of their rights and obligations when applying for insurance.

Health Insurance for pre-existing medical conditions

This website explains about Health Insurance in Australia, how it works, and who and what is covered.

This website offers more detail about Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) which assists international students to meet the costs of medical and hospital care they may need while in Australia. OSHC also includes ambulance cover and limited pharmaceuticals.

Life Insurance for pre-existing medical conditions

Pre-existing conditions are any medical conditions that occur before the commencement of your policy and can include health conditions like diabetes, asthma, HIV, and heart disease. Be aware that the language used to identify a 'pre-existing condition' varies from insurer to insurer. The Australian Federal 1992 Disability Discrimination Act regulates discrimination of people by life insurance companies in Australia. The act ensures that people with disability, including PLHIV are able to gain coverage by making it unlawful for companies to discriminate against PLHIV during the underwriting process. 

If you have a pre-existing condition in your medical or family history, there are insurers who specialise in particular conditions and they will be able to assess your risk factors in a detailed way to offer you the best value life insurance coverage.

Travel Insurance for pre-existing medical conditions

Recent Work

In 2012, PLNSW met with the then Australian Human Rights Commissioner Graeme Innes and representatives from the Financial Service Council (FSC), supported by the National Association of People Living With HIV/AIDS (NAPWHA), the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO) and the HIV/AIDS Legal Centre (HALC) to begin a dialogue to improve the understanding of Australian life insurers about the current health reality of PLHIV and our need to access life insurance products.

In the light of recent highly effective anti-retroviral treatments (ART), HIV is now regarded as a chronic manageable condition and we can now expect a life span similar to our peers who are HIV-negative.

pdfHIV and Insurance, Australian Human Rights Commission159.49 KB – PLNSW representation


Frequently Asked Questions about HIV and insurance - Unusual Risks "We help people with Pre-Existing medical conditions get Life Insurance"

Medical advances help insurers open up to HIV patients - Life Insurance News

Guidelines for Providers of Insurance and Superannuation - Australian Human Rights Commission (updated 2005)

This page updated May 2019

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