Health insurance cards connect to Apple Wallet in Australia

Health fund members of Australian insurance firms Medibank, Bupa, nib, and GU Health can now add their health insurance membership cards to the Apple Wallet and make contactless claims at any HICAPS terminals in Australia.

This comes as the National Australia Bank, which operates the Health Industry Claims and Payments Service, has enabled healthcare practitioners who are using its system to accept digital health insurance cards stored in the mobile wallet. 

In a statement, NAB said customers can now make a health insurance claim “by simply holding their iPhone or Apple Watch near any HICAPS terminal in Australia – creating a true digital wallet experience”. Real-time notifications about their claim will be sent through their insurer’s app.

It has also allowed customers to settle gap payments using Apple Pay. 


Enabling a contactless claiming process helps reduce the time spent on manually processing claims when customers forget their plastic cards. Such a method also allows quicker remittance of money to the customer’s bank account. 

Moreover, NAB valued Apple Wallet’s security and privacy. The mobile wallet encrypts a customer’s identifier number once their health insurance cards are connected. The HICAPS terminal can decrypt the number before passing it on to the customer’s insurer. 

“Apple doesn’t receive any information about the health insurance claim as there is a direct, encrypted connection between the user’s device and the HICAPS terminal,” it noted.


In a separate statement, Bupa Health Insurance said the move allowing access to their digital cards via Apple Wallet was a response to “high demand” from customers who are increasingly making contactless payments.

“We know our customers are using their phones and smartwatches to buy groceries, tap on to public transport and pay for their morning coffees, so it’s no surprise that they now expect to be able to make their Bupa claims with a quick tap of their device,” Bupa Managing Director Emily Amos said.

In other news, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said last week that the country’s COVID-19 vaccine certificates will soon come to the Apple Wallet. 


“Digital technology is rapidly changing the way merchants receive payments – with more customers choosing contactless over cash. This is an exciting enhancement that will further support those who prefer a more digital experience,” NAB Executive for Business Everyday Banking Tania Motton said.

“Now more than ever we want to make health insurance simple to use and relevant for our customers. Keeping up with trends in technology and customer experiences is a core part of that,” Amos of Bupa also stated.

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