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Health insurance and medical care

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All international students holding a valid student visa must have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC).

What is OSHC?

Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) is insurance that helps international students meet the cost of any medical and hospital care they may need while in Australia. OSHC also provides limited benefits for pharmaceuticals and ambulance services.

OSHC will only cover you from the time you arrive in Australia – you will need additional travel insurance while you are in transit.

You and your dependants must maintain suitable OSHC for the duration of your visa.

Why do overseas students need OSHC?

International students cannot access health services through Medicare, which is for Australian citizens only.

As a result, the Australian Government requires all holders of a student visa to maintain OSHC for the duration of their stay in Australia.

Without OSHC, you may have difficulty paying for any medical or hospital care. In most cases, hospital care will cost more than $1500 per day.

If you renew your student visa, you must also renew your OSHC policy.

How do I arrange my OSHC?

OSHC can be obtained from any government-approved OSHC provider. Our preferred OSHC provider is Allianz Global Assistance.

Allianz Global Assistance provides UQ students with additional benefits under their OSHC Essentials Cover (PDF, 98KB).

This arrangement is only available through UQ and provides you with benefits above the minimum required by the Australian Government.

If you have indicated you would like Allianz Global Assistance as your health insurance provider, your Letter of Offer will include an OSHC fee, alongside your deposit amount.

When you pay your deposit and OSHC fee, and return of your signed acceptance form, your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) will be issued.

You need a CoE to apply for a student visa.

After you arrive in Brisbane and have a local address, you can apply for your OSHC card through the Allianz Global Assistance website. 

If you are using a different provider, please visit their website for instructions on how to order your OSHC card. 

Allianz Global Assistance is also the preferred OSHC provider for UQ’s Institute of Continuing & TESOL Education (ICTE-UQ).

What does Allianz Global Assistance OSHC cover?

Allianz Global Assistance OSHC essential package covers:

  • 24-hour emergency assistance and medical advice,
  • partial coverage of medical services provided by doctors (GP services),
  • partial coverage of diagnostic services such as pathology and radiology,
  • some prescription medicines, and
  • emergency ambulance services.

For more information, view the OSHC essentials policy brochure (PDF, 1.5MB).

Non-emergency hospital visit charges

Your OSHC may not cover:

  • non-emergency hospital care,
  • access to some medical services in public hospitals, and
  • maternity (pregnancy) services.

In these instances, you may be required to pay your expenses upfront, or access medical services through a private hospital. Your OSHC policy will typically not cover upfront or private hospital expenses. It is your responsibility to pay these expenses. 

How much does it cost?

For advice about the monthly OSHC costs, please see the Allianz Global Assistance policy table (PDF, 90KB).

The Allianz Global Assistance website has more information about your options and what is and isn't covered by OSHC.

Other OSHC providers

UQ has no relationship with any other OSHC provider and we cannot accept payments for any insurer other than Allianz Global Assistance.

However, you are welcome to contact another OSHC provider and insure with them directly:

You will need to provide evidence of OSHC before a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) can be issued.

I'm from Norway, Belgium or Sweden: do I need OSHC?

Belgian and Norwegian students

As a result of agreements between the Australian Government and the Belgian Government, and the Australian Government and the Norwegian Government, all Belgian and Norwegian students are considered to have adequate insurance.

As a result, you do not need OSHC to meet your visa requirements.

Swedish students

Swedish students whose insurance is provided by CSN International (the Swedish National Board of Student Aid) or Kammarkollegiet (the Swedish Legal, Financial and Administration Agency) do not need to take out OSHC.

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