Australia – Overseas Students & OSHC plans : Why?
Before I start writing this blog, or before you plan to go to Australia for your study, I request you to observantly look at the image below. Images are fun, aren’t they? The first thing which comes to your brain after having a look at it? Australian Student Visa Requirement! A proper study visa, a Certificate of Enrolment (CoE) & an Overseas Students Health Cover (OSHC) are your major requirements! And guess what? They have a direct relationship with one another! For example, without an OSHC Cover, you don’t fulfil the conditions for your student visa! Again, without the CoE, you can’t apply for a Student Visa.
But for an Overseas Student who wants to follow his/her Australian dream, and study in one of the top – class universities, relish what Australia has to offer and be a part of the Australian culture; getting a Student Health Cover is perhaps, just the first, but the most essential step. But why is getting this OSHC or health insurance in Australia so significant? So, why is it a must – have to get the student visa?
Here are some possible explanations or as you may say, reasons to get an OSHC!
GOVERNMENT/IMMIGRATION REQUIREMENT –
This is perhaps the main reason & the most important one for you to get a Student Health Insurance Plan. When in Rome, do like the Romans do. Follow their rules. Plus, as per the guidelines of the Australian Home Affairs, condition – 8501 of the Student Visa mandates you and your family members to possess and maintain adequate health insurance during the entire period of your stay in Australia.
NO MEDICARE –
Let me start with what Medicare is. It is the Public Health System which covers the health and expenses of Australian citizens. To top it up, Australia is one of the countries which boasts of its healthcare systems in the world.
RECIPROCAL HEALTHCARE AGREEMENT (RHA) –
Now comes a twist in the tale. As part of Australia’s international & diplomatic relations, it has an RHA with 11 countries; meaning they can avail the benefits given to Australian citizens under the Medicare Scheme – These are Norway, New Zealand, Finland, Sweden, Malta, Ireland, The Netherlands, The United Kingdom, Italy, Belgium & Slovenia. There are approximately 195 countries in the world today, but the Medicare Scheme only covers these 11. But guess what? They can avail the Medicare benefits ONLY after having an Overseas Health Cover** (in addition to an OSHC)
Now, here are some lucky go people! Students from Sweden, Norway and Belgium are exempted from having an Overseas Student Health Insurance.
SAVING HEALTHCARE COSTS –
Now, read the last line in the second point. I do not know how much healthcare costs are in your country; but in Australia, if you avail basic medical facilities and a private bed in a hospital, it could cost you as much as approximately 1000 AUD a day! Not kidding you – 1000 AUD.
Now imagine the fact that you’ve been saving up for something, and you fall sick! Poof! Your money is gone; A proof that emergency services can cave a hole in your wallet.
Now, what your Overseas Health Insurance does is very simple! If I can describe it in a few words, it will give you affordable or free access to Australian medical systems, in case an unexpected event occurs. The OSHC cover is essentially, health insurance which helps overseas students cover up healthcare – related costs for themselves and their families while in Australia.
But, hey! How does the Overseas Student Health Insurance protect your health & obviously, your wallet? When it comes to consultations, your OSHC covers 100% of the Medicare Benefits Scheme (MBS) fee. For cases involving specialists, or those related to pathology or radiology; you still get a cover of 85% – 100% of your MBS fee. In addition to this, your health insurance plan includes in – hospital & out – hospital facilities, emergency services, ambulance services, MRI scans, campus support, direct access to the doctor/clinic, surgical prostheses, prescription items, pharmaceuticals and more**!
**Benefits provided and coverages given may vary from provider – to – provider.
Even though you might buy a plan that suits your needs, there are some things that the OSHC does NOT cover. Some services not covered under Medicare, IVF, home nursing, physio or dentistry services, laser eye surgery, cosmic or experimental surgery, hearing aids, custodial care, visits to an Optometrist for cases related to glasses/contact lenses etc. It also does not cover treatments done outside of Australia or personal – in hospital bills like using the cafeteria etc. Another thing you might want to keep in mind is about the waiting period. For certain treatments, all OSHC providers impose certain waiting periods. For pre-existing conditions, pregnancy or birth-related conditions, the waiting period is generally 12 months. It might be different for psychiatric conditions.
Can you see how it saves your wallet? It backs your medical expenses, whenever you fall under the ill or sick. Sounds worth having one isn’t it? Here are a few best OSHC providers in the market. But again, they are government certified health insurers, not any random ones in the market.
Now, all this might be okay? But which one should you choose? How much do they cost? What all do they cover? Is the pricing justified? Does it cover unnecessary costs? View various features, plans, providers etc. at GetMyPolicy.online and when you buy a plan, choose the one best tailored to your needs. When you purchase a plan from Get My Policy, you also receive 15 FREE PTE practice tests! Visit Get My Policy and protect your student life in Australia today!