As part of your requirements, all Student visa holders, and accompanying family, must have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for the duration of the visa. It helps students cover the cost of medical and hospital care. It also provides limited assistance with medicine and ambulance costs.
At the time of application, you must show evidence that you have paid the amount in full.
Unfortunately, you cannot pay by the month.
Once you have purchased a policy, your health insurance provider will issue an OSHC Certificate, which serves as evidence of your health insurance to for the application. This Certificate must be attached at the end, or you risk a refusal.
Three nationalities are lucky with regards to OSHC!
Certain governments have a reciprocal health care agreement with Australia.
It is important to note that you will only be covered for the same services that are considered 'medically necessary' in your home country.
Belgium & Norway
If you are applying as one of these nationalities, you do not have to buy OSHC.
If you hold insurance issued by Kammarkollegiet, you do not have to purchase OSHC cover.
OSHC Providers / Insurers
Only 5 insurance companies provide OSHC. Each must provide the basic level of service as dictated by the immigration department.
The price and level of cover depends on your situation. Being a couple or family with children is VERY expnsive, sso ensure you know these costs before committing to studying in Australia.
You generally get what you pay for, so compare inclusions, such as hospital cover and waiting periods, especially if you have specific medial concerns.
What is Covered?
At a minimum, OSHC must include cover for:
the benefit amount listed in the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) fee for 'out-of-hospital' medical services like visiting a doctor,
100% of the MBS fee for in-patient medical services like an operation,
shared accommodation in a public hospital
shared accommodation in a private hospital - but only if the hospital has a contract with the OSHC insurer.
accommodation for day surgery
some prosthetic (artificial limb) devices
pharmaceutical (medicine) benefits up to $50 per item - maximum of $300 a year for a single member / $600 for a family.
Be aware: there may be very larger 'out-of-pocket' costs if for some pharmaceuticals, like those for cancer treatment.
Insurers may have waiting periods in the first 2-12 months for:
pre-existing medical conditions - including disability & pregnancy services
pre-existing psychiatric conditions
Waiting periods start from the day the student arrives in Australia on a student visa.