Australia's Money Matchmaker® - Loan Matchmaking

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Medical loans

Written by

Shaun McGowan

Medical loans are personal loans used to pay for medical treatments, surgical procedures and basically anything not covered by Medicare.

This might include travelling overseas for cheap cosmetic, dental or medical procedures.

Keeping mind, you may need to disclose what you’re intending to use the loan for when applying with a lender.

Here’s everything you need to know before you apply.

Medicare cover or medical loans?

Medicare, Australia’s public health system, will usually provide cover for necessary procedures and treatments.

But what if the procedure isn’t covered by Medicare?

When you can’t or don’t want to fund a procedure or expense through Medicare or private health insurance, you can use a loan to pay for:

  • Specialist or doctor consultations
  • Medical and cosmetic procedures
  • Medicine and medical equipment
  • Hospital expenses
  • Travel and accommodation

Here are a few examples:

You’re having a cosmetic procedure

Non-essential cosmetic procedures are not covered under Medicare or private health insurance and they can be expensive.

A medical loan can help to cover:

  • The costs of the procedure
  • Travel expenses (if required)
  • Aftercare costs (if required)
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You don’t want to wait for the public system

Australia’s public health system is one of the best in the world but, unfortunately, there are long wait times for many elective procedures.

If you’re faced with a long wait time for medical treatment, taking out a medical loan and paying for private medical care could be an alternative.

Loan overdrafts

Your procedure exceeds your private health insurance cover

Most private health insurance policies cap the amount that you can claim for any given procedure, and if you exceed these caps you’ll have to pay the remainder.

A medical loan may be helpful to cover this difference.

The types of defaults lenders are interested in

You need dental care or laser eye surgery

Unfortunately, Medicare does not cover most dental procedures or laser eye surgery. These procedures tend to be expensive.

If you don’t have private health insurance (with dental cover) your only option may be to pay for the care yourself.

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Australia's Money Matchmaker matching you with your best loans across multiple lenders
Money Tip: No matter the reason you are getting a medical loan, make sure to check that you’ll receive the funds in time to pay for your medical procedure.

How to choose a medical loan

Now that you’re ready to consider applying, let’s look at how to get a great deal on your loan.

There are a few things you’ll want to look at:

  • Borrowing amount - the amount of money you can get approved for
  • Interest rates - the standard, ongoing charge for borrowing money
  • Loan terms - how long you can borrow the money for. Longer means cheaper repayments but more overall interest.
  • Fees - the most common cost that can be avoided!

While we’re talking about fees, there are four types you should be aware of.

Some of these are one-off fees, while others may cause ongoing costs or complications down the line!

Medical loan fees include

  • Upfront costs - establishment fees and application fees
  • Ongoing fees - annual fees and monthly fees
  • Late payment fees - charged if you miss a payment
  • Extra repayment fees - charged if you make early repayments to reduce the amount of interest payable on the principal amount.

Some medical loans have useful features that may save you money and make paying them off easier.

If your medical treatment won't require considerable ongoing care, you may also wish to consider a loan that allows fee-free extra repayments.

This can make it easier to repay your loan early and save on interest once you recover and improve your financial situation.

Fees on loans to be aware of

Find the best deal on medical loans


How to qualify and apply for a medical loan

You can apply for a medical loan in Australia if you are:

  • Over the age of 18; and
  • An Australian citizen or permanent resident; and
  • Employed or have a regular source of income over $25,000 per year
How to qualify for a loan in Australia

If you meet the basic eligibility for a medical loan, you will then need to compare lenders and assess their individual approval criteria.

To get a medical loan you will need to:

The most important factor when gaining approval is to demonstrate your ability to meet the repayment schedule over the term of the loan.

If you take our quiz and find a lender you want to apply with, you will be directed to the lender’s website and need to supply all documentation as you normally would when applying for a medical expenses loan, which may include:

  • Proof of identity — e.g. passport or driver licence
  • Proof of income — e.g. payslips, bank statements
  • Proof of address — e.g. utility bills, bank statements.
  • Details of any current debts or other loans

You will need to provide personal identification and financial documents (usually your bank statements or recent payslips), as lenders will need to assess your financial stability and determine if you can service the loan amount.

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Here are the most popular questions people are asking about medical loans

You may be able to get a medical loan if you have bad credit but each lender’s credit policy will apply. If you are struggling to get approved you may have more luck applying with a lender that specialises in bad credit loans.

Yes, most borrowers will lend to you even if your medical procedure is to be performed outside of Australia.

Medical loans have limits from $2,000 to $75,000. The amount that you can borrow will also depend on your credit history and debt servicing ability.

Yes, a medical loan can be used for any costs related to your medical procedure. That includes paying for essentials while you recover.

The right medical loan can save you $1,000s


About the Author

Shaun McGowan from



Shaun McGowan

Shaun is the founder of and is determined to help people pay as little as possible for financial products. Through education and building world class technology. Previously Shaun co-founded and Lend.

*Information about comparison rates Comparison rates are designed to allow borrowers to understand the true cost of a loan by taking into account fees and charges, the loan amount and the term of the loan. The comparison rate is based on an unsecured fixed rate personal loan of $10,000 over 3 years. WARNING: Comparison rates are true only for the examples provided and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate.