Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)
What is OSHC?
OSHC is insurance to assist international students meet the costs of medical and in-hospital care, out-hospital that a student may need while in Australia. OSHC will also pay limited benefits for pharmaceuticals and ambulance services.
All student visa holders must maintain adequate arrangements for health insurance while they are in Australia. Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) provides medical and hospital insurance for student visa holders. You must not arrive in Australia before your health insurance starts.
If you are in Australia and do not have adequate health insurance, you are in breach of visa condition 8501. You can purchase OSHC online by visiting the OSHC insurer’s website. You will need OSHC coverage for the duration of your visa.
Which insurers offer OSHC?
Currently, five Australian health funds provide OSHC policies for overseas students;
- Australian Health Management
- Allianz Global Assistance
- BUPA Australia
- Medibank Private
- Nib Health Funds Limited
Details and costs of policies, including what an OSHC policy will and won’t cover, and any waiting periods that may apply to certain treatment types, can be obtained by contacting each insurer directly.
If you face a situation where you feel like you’re being taken advantage of or unfairly treated in regards to your OSHC, you can contact the Private Health Insurance Ombudsman(PHIO). It’s a free service designed to help you out of trouble!