Health Insurance for Studying in Australia

If you are traveling to Australia on a student visa to study at an Australian university, you must take out special health insurance for studying in Australia, namely the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). Proof of the OSHC must be provided when applying for a student visa.

The situation is different when students travel to Australia with a different visa – such as the Working Holiday Visa – instead of a student visa, in order to study there for a short time: Then they are not insured through the OSHC! You should therefore take out private health insurance abroad.

The Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) at a glance

The OSHC is a health insurance specifically for international students for studying in Australia, which must be taken out by students of almost all nationalities if they study in Australia for more than 3 months. Only Belgians, Norwegians and Swedes are currently excluded from this. See best-medical-schools for more about Australia.


The OSHC covers the costs of visits to the doctor, some hospital treatments and medically necessary transport in the ambulance. In addition, the cost of prescription drugs is reimbursed up to a certain amount.

There is a minimum of services that an OSHC must provide. This does not include treatments at the dentist. Additional insurance can be taken out for this.

In general, you should inform yourself in good time about the exact costs your OSHC will cover, so as not to experience any nasty surprises later! Some insurance benefits can only be used after a waiting period of up to 12 months. This includes, for example, benefits for the treatment of health problems that were known before the OSHC was completed.

Since the OSHC does not cover, among other things, a patient repatriation or dental treatment, it can make sense to take out additional health insurance abroad. You can find an example of this below this article.

Complete the OSHC

Typically, students complete the OSHC through their Australian university. But there is also the option of choosing a provider for the OSHC yourself. International students must purchase the Overseas Student Health Cover for the entire period that the student visa is valid.

It is important to ensure that the OSHC is concluded with a provider recognized by the Australian authorities. Most universities have a preferred provider, but they also accept health insurance from other providers that are also accepted by the Australian authorities. You will usually receive information on this together with your offer letter.

OSHC costs

The costs for the OSHC are on average AUD 300 per semester for an insurance for one person that includes all services that the OSHC must at least offer.

Behavior in case of illness

Students who make an appointment with a general practitioner or are hospitalized in an emergency do not need to contact their insurance company in advance. In other cases you should clarify with the insurer beforehand whether the costs are covered by the OSHC. For example, when you go to a hospital for treatment that is not an emergency.

Group of Eight

The Group of Eight (go8) is an Australian university association. It was founded in 1999 and is based in the Australian capital Canberra. Members of the Group of Eight are the eight leading universities in Australia in the field of research:

  • Australian National University
  • Monash University
  • University of Adelaide
  • University of Melbourne
  • UNSW Australia
  • University of Queensland
  • University of Sydney
  • University of Western Australia

These universities are also among the oldest universities in the country.

The members of the Group of Eight together do 70 percent of the research work of all Australian universities. In many areas, their research is above the global standard, according to the latest Excellence for Research Australia (ERA) survey.

Goals of the Group of Eight

The aim of the universities in the Group of Eight is to influence the communication and development of sustainable policy in academic education and research. In addition, the Group of Eight is keen to establish international connections. These already exist at universities or research institutions in China, Chile and Brazil or also Germany and France.

Graduate numbers

26 percent of all students in Australia graduate from a university that is a member of the Group of Eight. One in three international students is studying at one of the Group of Eight’s universities. Almost half of all students doing a Masters by Research or PhD are enrolled at a University of the Group of Eight. If you only look at the doctoral degrees, it is even 53 percent.

The universities affiliated with the Group of Eight produce a particularly large number of graduates in the following subjects:

  • Human medicine and veterinary medicine (over 63 percent)
  • Dentistry (66 percent)
  • Natural sciences (over 50 percent)
  • Engineering (over 40 percent)

Health Insurance for Studying in Australia