Medicare for Foreigners

What is Medicare?

Medicare is the social health cover that is free to All Australian citizens, permanent residents and visitors from certain countries. It allows you access to free or cheap healthcare and medicine. So you can visit a doctor or get medicine from a pharmacy at a discounted cost.

 

What does Medicare cover?

  • Free or cheaper treatment by health professionals such as doctors, optometrists, and sometimes dentists
  • Free or cheaper visits to hospital
  • Cheap access to medicines

If you do want to visit a doctor and you are registered with Medicare, you may be able to have a check up for free if you go to a Bulk Billed doctor. Bulk Billed means the fee is entirely paid by Medicare and there is no out of pocket expense.

However many doctors are not bulk billed and the patient must pay a small fee.

 

Who can get Medicare?

  • Australian citizens, New Zealand Citizens and Australian permanent residents.
  • If you have applied for certain permanent visas (Eg – if you have applied for a partner visa)
  • Or if you are a visitor to Australia and from a country that has reciprocal medical arrangements with Australia. The countries include: New Zealand, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Finland, Italy (only for 6 months), Belgium, Malta(only for 6 months), Slovenia and Norway. For more information click here http://www.humanservices.gov.au/customer/services/medicare/reciprocal-health-care-agreements

 

How to apply for Medicare:

  1. You can apply for Medicare by completing the required form here
  2. You must then take this completed form with all of the required documents to a Medicare Service Centre.
  3. Once you are accepted to Medicare, you will then receive a Medicare Card that you can show when visiting the doctor

 

If I am on a student visa, can I access Medicare?

Unfortunately if you apply for a student visa you generally MUST have overseas student health cover as a condition of the visa. So even if you are from a country that has an agreement with Australia, you are still required to obtain the overseas student health cover.

 

If I am on a working holiday visa, can I access Medicare?

If you are from the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Finland, Italy (only for 6 months), Belgium, Malta(only for 6 months), Slovenia and Norway then you should be able to access Medicare on a working holiday visa.


 

If you have any questions about accessing Medicare feel free to contact Pathway to Aus on:

E: info@pathwaytoaus.com

W: PATHWAYTOAUS.COM

or Enquire online