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16th May, 2022

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What is Overseas Student Health Cover in Australia?

Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) is an Australian coalition health insurance program for international students studying in Australia which is based on Australian Medicare System. OSHC provides financial assistance to overseas students who require medical or hospital care in Australia. OSHC also covers ambulances and certain medications.

If you’re going to Australia on a Student Visa in that case, it is a requirement of your visa that you have health insurance for your stay. While you are in Australia on a student visa, you must keep your insurance up to date.


Which is the best student health insurance in Australia?

Many countries worldwide provide healthcare benefits to international students, but they have different cover schemes. Healthcare is one of the most crucial verticals to consider when studying abroad. Certain insurers offer OSHC to students as part of a Deed of Agreement with the Department of Health to provide adequate health insurance at a fair cost. OSHC is offered by a small number of registered health insurers. Some of the best student health insurance in Australia are:

Health Insurer Insurer website
ahm OSHC www.ahmoshc.com
Allianz Care Australia (Peoplecare) www.allianzcare.com.au/en/student-visa-oshc.html
BUPA Australia www.bupa.com.au/health-insurance/oshc
CBHS International Health www.cbhsinternationalhealth.com.au/overseas-students-oshc
Medibank Private www.medibank.com.au
NIB OSHC www.nib.com.au

OSHC deed is signed for which country?

OSHC can only be provided by Australian private health insurers who have signed a Deed with the Australian government to provide Overseas Student Health Cover. The Deed lays out the requirements registered insurers must meet to sell the OSHC product. The Deed is a legal agreement between the Commonwealth of Australia and the appropriate insurer that specifies the minimum benefits that the insurer must pay as well as the conditions under which the insurer is not required to pay any benefits.


What is covered under OSHC?

The OSHC Deed sets out the minimal parameters for an OSHC policy. Explanatory Guidelines for the Deed and a One-Page Fact Sheet describing what is covered by the Deed and how OSHC works are available from the Department of Health. Students who study in Australia receive OSHC, which covers hospital treatment, doctor visits, ambulance coverage, and Medicine costs. OSHC insurers can provide you with a wide range of OSHC products. This could range from simple to complete products. The essential items cover the legally required minimum services, whereas the complete list includes the primary and additional services defined by the OSHC policy. OSHC help you pay for:

  • Accidents
  • All eye surgery (e.g. cataracts, squints, pterygiums)
  • Back surgery (e.g. slipped disc)
  • Colonoscopies and bowel surgery
  • Grommets in ears
  • Heart surgery (e.g. stents, open heart surgery)
  • Hernia surgery A Kidney stone and gall stone removal
  • Knee and shoulder surgery
  • Knee, hip and shoulder investigations
  • Major joint replacement (e.g. artificial knee/hip)
  • Rehabilitation programs
  • Removal of appendix
  • Removal of tonsils and adenoids
  • Renal dialysis
  • Upper gastrointestinal investigations

What is not covered by OSHC?

General treatment (ancillary or additional cover) such as dental, optical, or physiotherapy is not covered by OSHC. However, you can get Extras OSHC from an OSHC provider or general treatment insurance from any Australian private health insurer if you need coverage for these services.

  • Pharmaceuticals and OSHC
  • Only restricted pharmaceutical benefits apply under OSHC with a maximum of $300 per year for a single membership ($600 for a family membership) and $50 per pharmaceutical item. If you need pharmaceutical therapy, especially oncology (cancer) treatment, which can cost tens of thousands of dollars, you may face considerable out-of-pocket payments. Visitors who are planning to visit Australia are allowed to take medicines and medical gadgets with them for urgent use and small import quantities for personal use.

Exclusions are services not covered under your health cover. You will not receive a benefit for the services listed below.

  • Cosmetic surgery
  • Extra services such as treatments by a dentist, physiotherapist or any other Extras service provider
  • Infertility treatments like assisted reproductive services or in-vitro fertilization and secondary conditions related to infertility treatments
  • Transportation into or out of Australia
  • Treatment arranged before arriving in Australia
  • Treatment outside of Australia or en route to or from Australia
  • Services and treatments that are covered by compensation or damages of any kind (like workers compensation or third party insurance)
  • Services not covered by Medicare and therefore not attracting MBS item numbers such as non-government approved MRI scans, cosmetic surgery, laser eye surgery and experimental surgery

How to get OSHC Australia?

Certain insurers offer OSHC to students as part of a Deed of Agreement with the Department of Health to provide adequate health insurance at a fair cost. OSHC is offered by a small number of registered health insurers. To get OSHC you can contact Aptech Study Abroad experts.

Cost of OSHC

Overseas Student Health Cover insurance for international students complies with visa requirements. If you wish to continue studying in Australia, remember to extend your student cover. If you want to work in Australia, nib also offers working visa compatible graduate cover.

OSHC (Overseas Student Health Cover) costs $605 per year.

The cost of OSHC differs depending on the type of cover required. The lowest cost of minimum cover is AUD$478 for 12 months of singles cover, $2,600 for 12 months of couples cover and $4,200 for 12 months of family cover.

To know the cost of 3 or more years, contact Aptech Study Abroad Expert.

Is OSHC refundable in Australia?

Yes, refund is possible you can submit a refund request form from your member account if your circumstances have changed and you require a refund of your Overseas Student Health Cover.

The Deed's article 6.8 stipulates the circumstances in which insurers might cancel policies and make refunds. The condition in which refund is possible includes:

  • When a student decides not to come to Australia;
  • When a student stops studying and leaves before their visa expires;
  • When the Department of Immigration and Citizenship denies a student's application for an extended stay;
  • When a student is granted permanent residence;
  • When a student has been outside Australia for more than three months; or
  • When a student has an OSHC from another insurer.

So, if you're planning to study in Australia, then avail the health insurance benefits of Australia to avoid the overflow expenses. For more details, you can contact Aptech Study Abroad expert to receive the insurance and apply for Australia permanent Study Permit.