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General Procedures

Health Requirements

Health Requirements

Australia’s healthcare system has been ranked second amongst 11 high-income countries in the 2017 study by The Commonwealth Fund. To keep up these high standards, most visa applicants and their dependants are required to meet certain health criteria prior to visa grant. The specific requirements depend on personal circumstances and the type of visa. The purpose of these requirements is to protect Australians from health and safety risks and to safeguard the cost and supply of public health and community services.
Australia Visa Health Requirements

Requirements

In order to meet health requirements applicants must be free from a disease or condition that is:

  • deemed to be a threat to public health or a danger to the Australian community
  • considered to cause significant health care or community services costs
  • likely to increase demand for health care or community services that are in short supply
Health Threats
The following diseases are currently regarded as a danger to public health:
  • Tuberculosis
  • HIV and hepatitis
  • Yellow fever
  • Polio
  • Ebola virus disease
Significant Costs
The current policy threshold is A$49,000. The most common contributors are:
  • Intellectual impairment
  • HIV infection
  • Functional impairment
  • Renal disease or failure
  • Cancer
Short Supply
Presently, health services in short supply include:
  • Organ transplants
  • dialysis
Applicants with a significant health conditions may be asked to sign a Health Undertaking and a limited number of visas have a health wavier provision available.

Examination

All applicants for permanent and provisional visas including any dependants must undergo health examinations. In some circumstances, health requirements are applied to dependants, irrespective of whether they are migrating to Australia or not. The type of examinations depend on person’s age, however additional checks may be requested when appropriate.

Permanent and provisional visas

Aged under 2 years
  • Medical examination
Aged from 2 to 10 years
  • Medical examination
  • Tuberculosis (TB) screening test if from a higher risk country for TB or if applying for a refugee or humanitarian visas
Aged from 11 to 14 years
  • Medical examination
  • Chest x-ray
Aged from 15 years
  • Medical examination
  • Chest x-ray
  • HIV test

Applicants for a temporary visa may need to undergo health examinations. The type of examination will depend on a number of factors including the length of stay, the country of passport and any special circumstances.

Temporary visa

TB risk level
  • Countries that do not generally require health examinations
  • Countries that do require health examinations
Stay less than 6 months
  • No health examinations required unless special significance applies
  • No health examinations required unless special significance applies
Stay more than 6 months
  • No health examinations required unless special significance applies
  • Medical examination
  • Chest x-ray examination (if aged 11 years or over)
  • Any special significance requirements must be met
The relevant country is determined by applicant’s passport unless an applicant has spent more than three consecutive months in a country which requires health examinations.
If one or more of the special circumstances applies, applicants will also be required to undertake additional examinations, subject to age considerations.

Special Circumstances
  • Higher TB-risk country and potential to enter a hospital environment
  • Pregnancy with expected due date while in Australia
  • Intention to work as or study to be a doctor, dentist, nurse or paramedic
  • Intention to work or be a trainee at a childcare centre
  • Visitor visa subclass 600 applicant aged 75 years or older
Additional Examinations
  • Chest x-ray examination if aged 11 or over and a medical examination
  • Hepatitis B test
  • Chest x-ray and medical examinations, HIV, hepatitis B and C blood tests
  • Chest x-ray and a medical examination
  • Medical examination

Health examinations outside Australia need to be arranged with a panel physician appointed to perform Australian immigration health examinations. Examinations in Australia must be arranged with a migration medical services provider. The current provider is Bupa Medical Visa Services.

Applicants must bring their health case identifier (HAP ID) provided by the department and a valid passport. They should also bring an eMedical referral letter provided by the department, previous chest x-rays and any relevant medical reports for known medical conditions if applicable.

A report containing the results of the examinations will be provided to the department and assessed to determine whether health requirements are met. Examination report is usually valid for 12 months.

Insurance

In addition to health requirements, certain temporary visas may also require to provide evidence of adequate health insurance for the duration of the stay in Australia. Student Visa holders must obtain an Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) that provides medical and hospital insurance. OSHC must be from an Australian health insurance provider, but for other visa types holders health insurers may be from a home country.

Visa holders from 11 countries with reciprocal health care agreements are provided with essential health cover by Medicare, a taxpayer funded universal healthcare system in Australia. However, many expensive services such as ambulance, most dental work and private hospitals may not be covered by these arrangements.

It is recommended for all visitors and residents to have a private health insurance that is appropriate for their health needs. Visitors 75 years of age or over are strongly encouraged to take health insurance each time they visit Australia. The private health insurance ombudsman can assist consumers, including temporary visitors, with health insurance enquiries and issues.

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