Must-Know Features of Public HealthCare in Australia That Will Tempt You to Migrate
While moving to Australia, immigrants are usually riddled with questions like “Is healthcare in Australia good?” or “What is the cost of healthcare in Australia?”, “Who pays for healthcare in Australia”, etc.
These questions often lead many aspiring students to go back on their decision due to the complication of the immigration process. In such cases, it is best to consult top immigration consultants like GetGIS and do some research in their respective fields on their own.
So, read till the end and get to know all the details on public healthcare in Australia, especially for immigrants!
How Does the Public Healthcare System in Australia Work for Immigrants?
With one of the most extensive healthcare systems in the world, Australia provides a variety of general and preventative health services to its citizens and foreign immigrants.
The public healthcare program followed in the country is known as Medicare. It provides the best healthcare in Australia at low or no cost to citizens, permanent residents, and immigrants who are eligible for it.
Learn more about it in the next section!
Medicare: Services & Way to Access It
Formulated in 1984, Medicare is the primary program to gain access to healthcare in Australia. It determines the quality of healthcare in Australia.
The majority of medical expenses, including hospital stays, doctor visits, and prescription drugs, are covered by Medicare. Holders have the option of selecting either Medicare alone or Medicare with private insurance.
It is advised that immigrants traveling on prospective visas apply one week following their arrival before enrolling. By doing this, the Medicare office can obtain information about your visa from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. Typically, the enrollment procedure takes three weeks.
Curious about the Benefits of Medicare? Find Out Here!
1. Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
The Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, or PBS, contributes to lower drug prices. It offers more than 5,200 items and medical experts prescribe medicines listed here.
Most PBS medications only require partial payment for a Medicare beneficiary. The Australian government pays the remainder. If one has a concession card, the price is much lower. So, the amount one pays varies depending on the type of medication.
2. Hospital Costs
Under Medicare, one can receive free medical care as a public patient in a public hospital from a physician the institution has selected. Moreover, it covers things as:
- Emergency services
- Most operations and procedures are delivered in a public hospital
- Follow-up care
3. Medical Services
Medicare will cover 85% of the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) charge for services rendered by a specialist and 100% of the MBS fee for general practitioners when one visits a doctor outside of a hospital. Medical services that Medicare covers include:
- consultations with health practitioners, like general practitioners, specialists, and other health practitioners
- mental health services
- some dental procedures
How to Access Medicare?
Here is how you can access Medicare facilities and enjoy its benefits:
Step 1 - As an immigrant with a permanent residency visa or fulfilling the eligibility criteria, you will need to fill in the Medicare form with supporting documents like proof of residency status from the Department of Home Affairs, etc, and submit it to access the facilities.
Step 2 - Your Medicare card will be mailed to you after your application has been approved.
Step 3 - You have to pay a fee when receiving healthcare, such as at your doctor's office or public hospital, and then submit a claim to Medicare to recover the cost.
Step 4- You can apply for the claim right from where you have received the services, through your Medicare online account, the Medicare Express Plus mobile app, and by mail using the Medicare claim form.
Cost of Public Healthcare in Australia: Who Pays for It?
Depending on how one utilizes the healthcare system, funding for healthcare in Australia is divided among:
- All levels of government (Australian government and state and territory governments)
- Non-government organizations
- Private health insurersIndividuals (when patients incur out-of-pocket expenses for facilities that are not fully subsidized or reimbursed)
Who Delivers the Public Health Care Facilities?
In the public healthcare sector, patients usually get assistance from public hospitals. Public hospitals offer high-quality medical treatment, and those with access to Medicare can receive it for little or no cost.
The government subsidizes these hospitals. In case patients opt to utilize their private insurance in a public hospital, their costs are also covered by insurance.
Other than the public hospitals and the healthcare providers mentioned above, 31 Primary health networks (PHNs) operate in Australia. These are organizations that coordinate health services in local communities.
What Do the Improving HealthCare Facilities in Australia Imply for the Future?
A world-class facility in healthcare is one of the priority areas a country can aim to develop. It not only accounts for one of the basic needs of the citizens but also affects the quality of life as a whole.
As a result, when Australia outperformed other OECD nations in various healthcare quality and outcome indicator sectors, according to data compiled by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), it raised the expectation bar for the future of healthcare in Australia.
So, what does it mean for your future in Australia?
Let’s check it out!
- Better financial incentives to promote higher-quality patient care
- Improved flexibility in the health workforce
- Boost availability and access to information
- Enhanced review and assessment procedures for health technology
- Promoting a more innovative and competitive health insurance market
A Brighter, Healthier Tomorrow: The Promise of Public Healthcare in Australia
The enhancement in public healthcare in Australia not only certifies an improved lifestyle for you and your family but also ensures a better scope of employment if you are part of the healthcare sector or willing to be one.
Australia's immigration system can be difficult to navigate for those who wish to move there. This is where a GetGIS immigration expert may assist you realize your ambition of residing in the country.
Thinking of Moving Abroad? Here's How We Can Help
- Point calculation: In GetGIS, we calculate your points on your behalf to eliminate any chances of rejection or failure.
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So don’t waste your time thinking about the best time to visit Australia. Start your career in Australia with GetGIS by Booking a Free Consultation Today!
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Is there any medical emergency number that I can use in Australia?
Yes, there is a number that you can dial in case of an emergency, which is 000.
Q2. Will I be able to find pharmacies easily in Australia?
There is no need to worry as pharmacies are very easy to find in Australia, especially in large cities. They are generally open around the clock. But make sure to note the generic name of the medication you need and a prescription, as the names can vary from country to country.
Q3. Does Australia offer free healthcare?
If you are registered under Medicare, it covers most of your medical expenses like subsidized medicines, hospital and medical facilities. However, you might have to incur some expenses like ambulance services, extra services like glasses, dental treatment and natural therapies, surgery for cosmetic purposes, etc.
Q4. How is Medicare funded?
Medicare is funded by the Medicare levy, which is equal to 2% of taxpayers' taxable income.
Q5. What will happen if even after being registered under Medicare I spend a lot of money on medicines?
The PBS Safety Net assists in reducing costs if you spend a lot on medications. For the remainder of the year, prescription costs will be significantly lower once you hit the Safety Net Threshold amount.