International students in Australia must know the foundations of its healthcare system. This allows them to get comprehensive knowledge on how to get medical services.

Apart from insurance, Australian health care also provides medical services to foreign students. These services are similar to the ones citizens receive.

To help you understand health care in Australia, we’ve gathered important details about the system. All these would matter to you as a student, so make sure to absorb them as best as you can.

Health Insurance for International Student

International students who wish to enter Australia must have an Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). This is mandatory health insurance that students must get unless they’re exempted.

For example, students from certain countries such as New Zealand and Belgium are covered by Medicare. Some countries have health agreements with Australia but are not covered by OSHC.

If you find this a bit confusing, read our guide on how to get health insurance in Australia. From there you can learn the basics of getting the OSCH and list of insurers.

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS)

PBS is a national program that seeks to subsidize prescription medicines. Under this, Australian citizens and permanent residents can get medicines at an affordable price.

How does PBS involve you as an international student? Australia has a reciprocal healthcare agreement with other countries. If you’re a foreign visitor in any of these countries, you can use the PBS.

The PBS is part of Australia’s National Medicines Policy. This policy aims to meet medical needs while maintaining economic objectives.

Universal Health Care

Australia’s healthcare system is one of the most extensive in the world. It provides services ranging from general and preventative health. It’s also meant to address complicated diseases that may necessitate hospitalization.

Medicare provides universal health coverage in Australia. It is a government-funded program that covers the majority of medical care. This includes physician and hospital services, as well as prescription medicines. Its mission is to offer inexpensive, high-quality health care regardless of financial situation.

Medicare also includes pharmacy services and prescription drugs. It also provides free treatment in public hospitals. 

Private Health Insurance

Approximately half of all Australians have supplementary insurance coverage through private insurance. While being under private insurance, the Australian government still subsidizes this. The subsidy is 30% of the insurance premium.

In Australia, 11% of health funding is through private insurers. Most policies cover hospitalization costs, dental treatment, and consultations. Some policies also allow the insured to select his or her own hospital and doctor.

Getting private health insurance is a wise choice since not all medical care is covered by Medicare. Some of these procedures include physiotherapy and optical services.

Private health insurance is mostly used in private hospitals. But can also be used in public ones if you want the same treatment as a private patient.

Health care in Australia is one of the best in the world. If you’re interested in reading more about the Australian education sector, you can start with keynotes to remember when studying in Australia here at MSM Unify.