Insurance for International Students in Australia

One important step to remember when planning to study in Australia is that you must purchase insurance for international students. This insurance is the Overseas Student Health Cover or OSHC. Maintaining adequate OSHC, in fact, is one of the conditions of your student visa.

Important information about OSHC insurance for international students.

Student Health Insurance is important! Call IVC at +639175318472 for concerns you may have

For a reasonable cost, OSHC assists you in meeting the costs of medical and hospital care you and your family members may need while in Australia. OSHC also includes ambulance cover and limited pharmaceuticals. The following are important points regarding OSHC coverage.

  • Get a family policy if you have a single OSHC policy, but have family members traveling with you.
    • If you have children born in Australia during your stay in the country, you must also get insurance for them.
  • The OSHC start date must be the date you arrive in the country.
  • Whether you or your education provider arrange OSHC for you and your family members, you need to know the name of your health insurance provider, the date your policy starts and finishes, and the policy number.

Students from some countries may apply for Medicare under the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement with Australia. Having access to Medicare, though, does not accept the student from needing OSHC.


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Regular OSHC does not include dental, optical, or physical therapy services. You may, therefore, take Extras OSHC or general treatment cover with an Australian private health insurer. Another option is to supplement OSHC with other insurance, such as international travel insurance.

It is essential to maintain your coverage for the duration of your stay in Australia. The insurance company with whom you have OSHC may not reimburse you if you file a claim for services in months you were in arrears.

If your visa status changes, you must inform your insurer immediately so the company can assess whether your level of cover is still suitable. When your student visa expires, you are no longer eligible to hold OSHC. You may, however, change it to a residents’ cover or an Overseas Health Cover plan.

OSHC Providers

As of March 18, 2020, only a few registered health insurers offer OSHC. We’ve listed the companies and their websites below.

Coverage period

  • The following is a general guide to know how long your coverage should last.
  • Courses ten months or fewer, add one month to your course end date.
  • If your course is over ten months, ends in January to October, add two months to your course end date.
  • For courses over ten months that end in November to December, select March 15 of the following year.
  • Postgraduate research students should add six months to the above end dates.

Learn about the GTE requirements to study in Australia

Are you qualified to study in Australia? Check if you meet the criteria for eligibility for international students before you begin an application!