What is OSHC?
OSHC stands for Overseas Student Health Cover. It is a type of health insurance which is, mandatory if you are applying for a student visa.
This insurance should be valid since your arrival in Australia till the end of studies + holidays. It is organized prior to your visa application and the membership card is usually delivered by your school.
There are different providers that can offer OSHC such as Allianz, Medibank, NIB, BUPA, AHM.
What is covered by OSHC?
It usually covers visits to a GP – General Practioner - if the chosen doctor has an agreement with your OSHC company, emergencies, surgeries and even pregnancy, however, there are waiting periods for many services, for example, for pregnancy the waiting period is 12 months, it means if you have been covered for less than 12 months, you might not be covered by your health insurance. Basically anything that is not covered on the spot, can be refunded to you (30 to 80% in average) accordingly to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS).*
(Public Institution that regulates the health services in Australia) – LINK
* The health insurance company pays the benefits according to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS).
Each service has the MBS fee that has been set by the Australian Government for the purpose of calculating the benefits payable for that service.
If the actual fee charged by your doctor is higher (which is usually the case), your insurance company will only refund you the fee set by Medicare.
It’s important to remember that coverage might slightly change depending on your provider. You can have more information by checking their website.
What is not covered by OSHC? Standard OSHC does not cover health service such as:
- Optical appliances (e.g. prescription glasses),
- Physiotherapy or alternative therapies.
If you would like to be covered for these additional health services, or you expect that you will need these services in Australia, you can buy extra coverage with your insurance provider.
- If you intend to extend your study in Australia, you will be requested to extend your health insurance (OSHC). We can arrange your OSHC for you during your visa application/extension straight away in one of our offices!
- The health services covered by your insurance (OSHC) are valid only in Australia. If you are going to travel to any other country, we recommend for you to buy travel insurance for the time of your journey!