Questions and Answers
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I’m an overseas visitor - do I have to get health insurance?
Overseas visitors on temporary visas are not eligible for Medicare benefits including private health insurance rebates unless they are from a country with which Australia has a 'Reciprocal Health Care Agreement'. Australia currently has agreements with the United Kingdom, Malta, Finland, Sweden, Italy, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Ireland and Belgium.
If you are visiting Australia from these countries and you are not on a student visa, you are generally covered for emergency medical treatment in a public hospital. If you are unsure of your Medicare eligibility status, check the Medicare website. A number of private health insurers and general insurers provide health cover for overseas visitors. Benefits available, membership costs and eligibility can vary between insurers.
This is worth considering because if you are not covered by Medicare you could find yourself with big medical bills! Even in a public hospital you could be charged more than $1,000 a day in hospital fees alone.
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