Reciprocal Health Care Agreement

If you are on a 457 temp. visa and from UK, Sweden, Belgium, Finland, Italy, Malta, the Netherlands, Slovenia, the Republic of Ireland, or New Zealand you qualify for the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement in Australia. This means that you are eligible to receive immediate necessary medical treatment from the Australian public health care system.

Things you need to know about RHCA.

  1. Reciprocal agreements for medicare are assessed case by case.

  3. You can’t apply for Medicare until you are physically present in Australia.

  5. If your country is listed above and you have applied for a 457 Visa you will still need to arrange private health insurance to meet the 457 visa requirements.

  7. Once you are in Australia and have secured your medicare you can then ask for an exemption from DIAC.

  9. Reciprocal medicare agreements are usually limited to immediate necessary medical treatments, as in emergency care. It is a good idea to still supplement your medicare with private insurance.

Australia’s Medicare Levy

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You will have to pay Australia’s Medicare Levy Surcharge if:

  • You are from a RHCA country and eligible for a medicare card in Australia.
  • Earn over $80,000 (single income) or $160,000 (family income).
  • Do not have private hospital cover.

Medicare Levy Surcharge is an additional 1% on top of the 1.5% Medicare Levy. You can purchase private Reciprocal Health Coverage from an insurance provider to eliminate this surcharge.

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Hi, I’m Lauren, and I LOVE being an expat in Sydney but am fed up with all the misinformed and useless expat guides out there, not only giving bad advice but also charging for it! So I created Sydney Moving Guide written by expats, for expats. Click here to read my story.

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