Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) is a specialized health insurance program for international students in Australia. OSHC is insurance designed to assist international students in paying for any required medical or hospital care while in Australia. International students must purchase their Australian international student health insurance prior to leaving their home country because of these requirements.
Who Has to Buy OSHC?
All individuals with a student visa and their dependents are required to maintain OSHC for the duration of their stay in Australia by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.
There are a few exceptions to this rule:
- Students from Belgium are covered by the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement, so they do not need to buy OSHC.
- Because they are covered by Kammarkollegiet or the National Board of Student Air, Swedish students do not need to purchase OSHC. OSHC must be purchased by Swedish international students who are not covered by either plan.
- Students in Norway are covered by the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme, so they do not need to purchase OSHC.
Who Acquires OSHC?
You can choose your own OSHC-approved provider and pay for the insurance yourself, or your education provider can purchase OSHC for you. Having continuous coverage throughout your entire stay in Australia is crucial, regardless of who buys it. This is especially true for international students enrolled in two distinct educational establishments that coordinate insurance coverage for them.
What Insurers provide OSHC?
There are currently five insurers that provide OSHC, which can be purchased independently or through your academic institution:
- BUPA Australia
- Medibank Private
- Allianz Global Assistance (subcontracted by Lysaght Peoplecare)
- NIB OSHC
- Australian Health Management
What is covered by OSHC?
The OSHC plan is intended to cover treatment at a doctor’s office, hospital, or for limited prescription drugs for international students. Because coverage varies by plan, it is essential to contact each OSHC provider to ensure that you receive the necessary coverage.