If you are thinking about applying for a visa to Australia, an important factor to consider is whether you are required to satisfy a health criterion for the visa to be granted. Whether you are required to undergo a medical examination for an Australian visa will depend on a range of factors, including the visa subclass which you are applying for, your country of citizenship/residence, how long you intend to stay in Australia, and your intended activities in Australia.
To qualify for grant of most permanent visas, as well as well as those provisional and/or temporary visas that lead to a permanent visa, members of your family unit also need to meet the health requirement for Australian visa, even if they are not migrating to Australia with you.
There are a range of medical tests for an Australian visa that may be required, including a medical examination for an Australian visa, an HIV test and/or a Tuberculosis screening test.
In this article, we provide a general overview of the health criteria, including the health examination requirements that apply to certain visas and the process for completing medical testing (including what is included in medical examination for Australian visa), health waivers, health undertakings and health insurance requirements that may apply.
Please note that streamlined requirements that were introduced for certain temporary visa applicants In Australia during the COVID pandemic which waived the requirement to undertake a medical examination and chest x-ray have now ceased. These applicants are now required to again undertake health tests, as outlined in this article.
What Is Meant By The Health Criteria?
An important policy aim of Australia’s migration program is to ensure that the nation’s high health standards, which are some of the best in the world, are safeguarded and maintained. This is achieved by implementing a risk-based approach to screening visa applicants to assess their health for any diseases or conditions, including emerging health epidemics, which may be a threat to the community, that may result in significant costs being incurred, and place added demand on healthcare resources and services that are already in short supply.
A risk-based approach known as the ‘Health Matrix’ is applied to determine the type of medical examinations and processes an applicant will need to undergo for the purpose of meeting the health requirement and are based on a number of factors including the applicant’s country of citizenship/residence and its Tuberculosis incidence rate, their intended activities and length of stay in Australia.
Tuberculosis Is A Key Aspect Of The Health Criteria
Tuberculosis (TB) is a health condition which is identified in the migration provisions as posing a significant risk to public health and is one which cannot be effectively mitigated. As a result, all visa applicants must be free of active TB with no exceptions (complex provisions apply in cases of TB, for example, active and latent form of TB are distinguished in the migration provisions, and once specified TB treatment has been completed, the health requirement may be satisfied in certain circumstances).
To qualify for grant of a visa to Australia, you may need to meet a Health Requirement and complete a health examination to assess whether you present any of the identified risks listed above. This requirement is facilitated through Public Interest Criterion (PIC) 4005 and 4007 (which form part of the visa grant requirements for most visas). To meet the health requirement, health examinations may need to be completed. The migration provisions specify when a health examination for an Australian visa is required, and the type/s of medical testing to be conducted.
As mentioned above, most visas include a health requirement for Australian visa grant purposes. There are a few visa subclasses, however, which do not have this requirement, such as the Subclass 155 and 157 Resident Return visa (RRV). Very few visas do not impose a health requirement.
The Health Requirement for Australian visa applies to some temporary visa applicants, depending on:
- The visa being applied for;
- The visa applicant’s age (special provisions apply to children);
- The intended length of stay in Australia;
- The intended activities in Australia;
- The applicant’s country of citizenship, residence or where they have spent more than three consecutive months in the last five years;
- Any special circumstances; and
- Any significant health conditions identified as part of the applicant’s health examinations.
Note also that where an applicant for a temporary or permanent visa declares that they intend to participate in any of the prescibed special significance activities, additional immigration medical examinations are required, irrespective of their period of stay in Australia or TB-risk country (this does not apply to the Subclass 651 eVisitor visa, unless related to TB).
Permanent And Provisional Visas
The Health Requirement for Australian visa applies to all permanent and provisional visa applicants (a provisional visa is a temporary residence visa which may lead to a permanent residence visa). As noted in the introduction, depending on the visa for which you are applying, members of your family unit may also need to meet the health requirement for Australian visa to be granted to you (even if they are not migrating with you to Australia).
Under the risk-based apprach, each country is assigned a “TB-risk level” in the Health Matrix, which is based on World Health Organization (WHO) data.
A health examination for an Australian visa may also be required if your home country is affected by certain identified health concerns which are considered a threat to public health, such as Polio, Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) and Yellow Fever.
Which Health Tests May Be Required?
So what is included in a medical examination for Australian visa? The following types of medical testing may need to be performed:
- Medical examination
- Chest x-ray
- HIV test
- Hepatitis B test
- Hepatitis C test
- TB Screening test
As of 1 July 2023, applicants aged 5 years or older, who are required to undertake a medical examination, are no longer required to undergo a urine test to detect chronic kidney disease. The urine test, which forms part of the medical examination, has been replaced with a blood test (serum creatinine/eGFR) for applicants aged 15 years or older.
Children between the ages of 5 and 14 years old are not required to undertake urine or blood tests unless clinically indicated.
When Do You Need To Have A Health Examination For An Australian Visa?
If you are applying for a temporary visa, what is included in medical examination for Australian visa?
The following health requirements for Australian visa apply:
|Country TB-risk (as prescribed in the migration provisions)
|Temporary stay in Australia of less than 6 months||Temporary stay in Australia of 6 months or more|
|Lower TB-risk||No immigration medical examination required unless special significance applies.||No immigration medical examination required unless special significance applies.|
|Higher TB-risk||No immigration medical examination required unless special significance applies.||Medical examination, chest x-ray (if 11 years or older), serum creatinine/eGFR (if aged 15 years or older)|
Any special significance requirements must also be met.
If you are applying for a permanent or provisional visa, what is included in medical examination for Australian visa?
The following health examination for an Australian visa requirements may apply:
|Country TB-risk (as prescribed in the migration provisions)
|Permanent and provisional visa applicants|
|Lower TB-risk||Medical examination, chest x-ray (if 11 years or older), HIV test (if 15 years or older), serum creatinine/eGFR (if aged 15 years or older)|
Any special significance requirements must also be met.
|Higher TB-risk||Medical examination, chest x-ray (if 11 years or older), HIV test (if 15 years or older), serum creatinine/eGFR (if aged 15 years or older).|
Children 2 years of age to under 11 years old are required to complete a TB Screening test (TST or IGRA).
Any special significance requirements must also be met.
Applying The Health Matrix
All provisional and permanent visa applicants must undergo an immigration medical examination to a permanent standard.
To determine what (if any) health examinations are required for grant of a temporary visa to Australia, the following elements are key:
- The total length of the applicant’s stay in Australia (determined by the period of stay allowed on their visa) and any cumulative stay period;
- The applicant’s passport country or countries (if multiple passports held), country of residence and TB-risk level; and
- Whether the applicant intends to undergo any activities in Australia which make their health of special significance.
Let us now examine these three factors further below.
Factor 1: Stay Period In Australia
For temporary visa applicants, we need to distinguish between the following periods when applying the health matrix:
- The total length of the applicant’s stay in Australia (this is the period of stay allowed on the visa) and;
- any cumulative stay period.
Period Of Stay
The applicant’s total period of stay in Australia depends on whether they are onshore or are outside Australia:
- if outside Australia – the stay period for the new visa that they have applied for; or
- if in Australia – the period from when they last arrived in Australia until their intended departure date (i.e. the date their new visa will cease).
Cumulative Stay Period
The cumulative stay period is only applicable to higher-TB risk applicants who:
- have previously been granted a visa; and
- at the time of visa application, have not spent 28 consecutive days or more outside Australia.
The cumulative stay rule requires the visa applicant to have been offshore for 28 consecutive days or more at the time of visa lodgement. If the applicant has not been outside Australia for more than 28 consecutive days, the relevant period of stay considered would be from when the visa applicant initially entered Australia (rather than the stay period for the new visa being applied for).
Any period of 28 consecutive days or more outside Australia will “break” the applicant’s stay period, and their cumulative stay in Australia will no longer be relevant for health purposes. In this case, only the stay period for the new visa being applied for will be relevant when applying the health matrix.
Note that the cumulative stay rule does not apply to Subclass 417 Working Holiday visa applicants. In this case, applicants are assessed against the health matrix for their proposed stay of up to 12 months on their Working Holiday visa only. The cumulative stay rule also does not apply to applicants from lower TB-risk countries because, irrespective of their period of stay in Australia, they would ordinarily not be required to complete health examinations.
Additionally, under immigration policy, the cumulative stay rule also does not apply if the applicant is in Australia and is seeking an additional stay of less than 29 days (unless they declare a significant health condition in their new visa application).
Why Is There A Cumulative Stay Rule?
The reason for the cumulative stay period is to account for visa applicants who apply for multiple short-stay visas in Australia. By applying the cumulative stay rule, this ensures that higher-TB risk applicants are screened based on their actual length of stay in Australia, rather than periods of stay on individual visas. Otherwise, you would have a situation where an applicant from a higher-TB risk country who is actually in Australia for an extended period of time (e.g. for more than 6 months) on muitiple visas avoids the health requirement. The cumulative stay rule addresses this.
So to summarise, apply these steps to work out whether the cumulative stay rule applies:
- Has the applicant previously held an Australian visa?
- Has the applicant been outside Australia for less than 28 consecutive days?
- Is the applicant from a higher-TB risk country?
- Is the applicant applying for an additional stay of 29 days or more?
- If the answer is ‘yes’ to all of the above, the cumulative stay rule applies and therefore the applicant would be required to undergo a health examination for an Australian visa.
Example Where Cumulative Stay Period Applies
Let us demonstrate how the period of stay and the cumulative stay period applies with an example. Say you hold a South African passport and have been studying in Australia for the last five months. You then depart Australia for 21 days and are now applying for a Visitor visa for a three month stay. Because you have not been outside Australia for 28 consecutive days before applying for the Visitor visa, the cumulative stay rule applies. Therefore, the relevant period of stay is eight months when applying the health matrix (and not the stay period of the visitor visa, which is three months). And since South Africa is a higher-TB risk country (as it is not listed in IMMI 15/144), you would be required to undergo a health examination for an Australian visa (that is, for the visitor visa to be granted).
Example Where Cumulative Stay Period Does Not Apply
Now lets say that you hold a Brazilian passport and have been in Australia on a visitor visa for four months. You departed Australia and have been offshore for 6 weeks (42 days). You now seek to re-enter Australia and apply for another visa (say a visitor visa for three months). Since you have been outside Australia for 28 consecutive days when you apply for the second visitor visa, the relevant stay period for health matrix purposes is only three months (the stay period for the second visitor visa). The initial four month stay is not relevant because you were offshore for 28 consecutive days before applying for the second visitor visa. Had you remained in Australia, or been offshore for less than 28 consecutive days when applying for the second visitor visa), then the relevant stay period would have been seven months (the initial four months spent in Australia on the first visitor visa plus the subsequent three month period of stay on the second visitor visa). And since Brazil is a higher-TB risk country (as it is not listed in in IMMI 15/144), you would be required to undergo a health examination for an Australian visa (that is, for the second visitor visa to be granted).
Factor 2: Country TB-risk Level
What Are The Lower TB-risk And Higher TB-risk Countries?
The prescribed list of countries considered to be Lower TB-risk and which therefore do not generally require medical examinations for Australian visa are specified in Migration Regulations 1994 – Specification of Required Medical Assessment – IMMI 15/144. Any countries which are not listed in Schedule 1 of Column A are deemed to be Higher TB-risk for this purpose.
It is important to point out that under immigration policy, medical tests for Australian visa for each applicant in a family unit are determined individually. But in instances where there are concerns regarding TB for any member of the family unit (migrating or non-migrating), or concerns regarding a medical condition that could be shared by family members, the rest of the family unit may be required to undergo the same immigration medical examinations.
The TB-risk country which you will be assessed under will be based on the highest TB-risk country when you consider the following:
- Your country of Citizenship (generally as per the passport used to lodge your visa application);
- Your country of residence; and
- Countries where you have spent three or more consecutive months (90 days) in the last five years (as at time of visa application lodgement).
Factor 3: Special Significance
What Are Special Significance Requirements?
If you are applying for either a temporary or permanent visa and you make a declaration in your visa application that you intend to participate in any of the special significant activities listed below, you will be required to complete additional medical examination for Australian visa (regardless of your intended period of stay in Australia and the relevant TB-risk country that applies in your circumstances).
What is included in medical examination for Australian visa in these circumstances?
|Your intended activities in Australia
|Medical examinations required|
|If you are from a higher TB-risk country and are likely to enter a health care or hospital environment
|Medical examination, chest x-ray (if 11 years or older), serum creatinine/eGFR (if 15 years or older)|
|If you are pregnant and intending to give birth in Australia (applies to onshore and offshore visa applicants) |
|Hepatitis B test|
|If you are 15 years or older and intending to work as, or study to be, a doctor, dentist, nurse or ambulance paramedic
|Medical examination, chest x-ray, HIV test, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C test, serum creatinine/eGFR, latent TB screening test – TST or IGRA (if from a higher TB-risk country)|
|If you are from a higher TB-risk country and are intending to work as, or study or train to be, a health care worker or work within a health care facility, or within aged care or disability care while in Australia|
|Medical examination, chest x-ray, serum creatinine/eGFR (if 15 years or older), latent TB Screening Test – TST or IGRA|
|If you are 75 years or older and applying for a Visitor subclass 600 visa
|Medical examination, serum creatinine/eGFR|
Additionally, if you are likely to work (or be a trainee) at an Australian childcare centre (including preschools and crèches), you need to undertake a medical examination, chest x-ray and serum creatinine/eGFR if you are 15 years or older.
Additional blood medical tests for Australian visa are required for the following permanent visa applicants:
|Type of applicant
|HIV test||Hepatitis B test||Hepatitis C test|
|All children who have been, or are to be, adopted by Australian citizens or permanent residents on an adoption subclass 102 visa, Child subclass 802 visa, or as a dependent on any provisional or permanent visa.||Required||Required||Not required|
|If you have a clinical indicator or your medical history gives rise to a possibility of infection (for example, if your biological mother is positive)||Required||Required||Required|
Be aware that the above discussion is not an exhaustive list of all medical tests for Australian visa that may be required. They are the minimum requirements only. Depending on your personal situation, you may be referred for other types of medical tests for Australian visa grant.
Special Cases When The Health Matrix Is Not Applied
In specified circumstances, special arrangements are in place which require applicants for certain visa subclasses to undertake medical examinations outside of the health matrix requirements. An example of this is the Subclass 870 Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa. In this case, visa applicants must undergo all immigration medical testing (i.e. medical examination, chest x-ray examination and HIV test).
Non-Migrating Family Members
As mentioned earlier in this article, certain visa subclasses require all members of the family unit of the primary applicant to meet the health requirement, irrespective of whether they themselves are a visa applicant and/or intend to join the primary applicant in Australia (or are already resident in Australia on a temporary visa).
This applies to almost all permanent and provisional visas, as well as those provisional and/or temporary visas that lead to a permanent visa. For these visas, the health requirement is a ‘one fails, all fail’ criterion. This means that if any member of the applicant’s family unit fails to meet the health requirement and no health waiver is available, no family member (including the primary applicant) can be granted the visa.
Be mindful, however, that in the case of provisional and permanent visas, the migration provisions allow for this requirement to be set aside in circumstances where the Department deems it to be ‘unreasonable’ to require the person to undergo immigration medical examinations. Policy sets out circumstances which would warrant the request of health examinations for non-migrating family members. This includes, for example, a situation where a young child is remaining in their home country without parental support (as the parents are migrating to Australia).
Pregnant Visa Applicants
Special health examinations for an Australian visa also apply to pregnant visa applicants.
For pregnant applicants who are from a lower TB-risk country and intend to give birth in Australia, they must undergo a hepatitis B test. If the applicant expects to incur medical costs, or require treatment or medical follow-up for pregnancy in Australia, then they must complete a medical examination, a chest x-ray and a serum creatinine/eGFR test.
For pregnant applicants who are from a higher TB-risk country and intend to give birth in Australia, they must undergo a medical examination, a chest x-ray, a serum creatinine/eGFR test and a Hepatitis B test.
If they are likely to enter a health care or hospital environment in Australia, or expect to incur medical costs, or require treatment or medical follow up for pregnancy in Australia, then a medical examination, chest x-ray and serum creatinine/eGFR test is required.
How Does The Health Requirement Apply To Visas Subject To Two-stage Processing?
Special arrangements are in place for visa applicants who hold, or previously held (within the last 12 months), a substantive temporary or provisional visa and who then apply for the corresponding permanent visa. An example of this is the Subclass 820/801 Partner visa. In this case, the applicant is required to undertake a health assessment to the permanent standard at stage one of the application process (that is, to be granted the initial subclass 820 visa). Why is this the case? Because such applicants are intending to stay permanently in Australia in the longer term.
So what happens to these visa applicants at the permanent residence visa processing stage (that is, the Subclass 801 Partner visa in our example)? Such applicants who received a permanent health clearance for their provisional visa (or had a health waiver, this is discussed further below) are not ordinarily required to undertake any additional health checks at the second stage.
Another example is the Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa and Subclass 494 Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa, both of which provide a pathway to a permanent residency visa via the Subclass 191 Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) visa (to be introduced from 16 November 2022). In this case, the applicant will be required to undergo medical testing for grant of the temporary visa. When they reach the processing of the permanent residence visa stage, no additional medical testing would be required.
There are exceptions however. The following circumstances (under policy) require medical testing to be undertaken at the permanent residence visa stage (note this list is not exhaustive):
- Where the Department has reason to believe that the applicant failed to disclose a health condition at the first stage, or there are concerns that fraud may have been involved, or if the Department has information the applicant’s health condition has changed since the first stage; or
- Where the applicant’s temporary or provisional visa ceased more than 12 months before the Department commences assessment of the associated permanent visa.
How Long Do Health Examination Results Last For?
To be granted a visa, a visa applicant’s immigration medical examination results must be assessed and they must be granted a health clearance (which are valid for a limited time only).
Health examinations for Australian visa application purposes are generally valid for a period of 12 months (under immigration policy, this can be extended in very exceptional circumstances). You may not need to undertake medical tests for an Australian visa when you apply for a visa if you have previously completed health examinations for visa application purposes (i.e. previous test results may be re-used in certain circumstances). To re-use medical test results, the health clearance must still be valid, and all the immigration medical examinations required for the new visa application must have been completed.
In certain cases, particularly if you are applying for a visa which has significant estimated processing delays, you would be best advised to wait until closer to the expected processing time that applies to your application before completing any required health examinations for an Australian visa. This way, you avoid a situation where the medical test for Australian visa results are no longer valid by the time your application reaches the Departmental processing stage (e.g. if processing takes more than 12 months). If this occurs, you may need to repeat the medical examination for Australian visa (and thus incur additional costs and further processing delays) before the visa can be granted.
How Will You Know If You Need To Have A Health Examination For An Australian Visa?
If you lodge your visa application online, any health examination for an Australian visa that you need to complete will be listed under the ‘health assessment’ link on ImmiAccount. You will first need to fill in your medical history. The system will then generate a referral letter with your HAP ID, which you will need to book your health examination/s.
If you lodge your application as a paper form, you will be contacted by your case officer if a health examination for an Australian visa is required. If you need to have medical test for Australian visa completed, the process will be the same as outlined above (i.e. you will receive a referral letter, etc.).
How Do You Arrange Your Health Examination For Australian Visa?
Once you have been issued with your HAP ID, you can then proceed to book an appointment for your health examination/s. The process will be different, depending on whether you are located onshore or outside Australia.
If You Are In Australia
All medical examination for Australian visa performed in Australia for migration purposes are conducted by Bupa Medical Visa Services. You can make an appointment either online or by telephone on 1300 794 919.
If You Are Outside Australia
Medical examination for Australian visa performed offshore can be completed only by a select list of panel physicians and radiologists who have been approved by the Department for this purpose. To arrange your appointment, you will need to refer to the Immigration office located nearest to you. Details of approved health service providers and their contact details will be listed there for your reference.
What Do You Need To Bring With You To Your Appointment?
Ensure that you take the following items:
- Your passport
- Your Referral letter
- Prescription glasses/contact lenses, where applicable
- Any existing specialist/other medical reports for known medical conditions
- Any previous chest x-rays
How Much Does The Health Examination For An Australian Visa Cost?
If you complete your medical test for Australian visa onshore, the cost for this service will be advised to you by Bupa Medical Visa Services. You can check the schedule of current fees on their website.
For health examinations performed offshore, the costs will differ for each country. These details will be advised to you when you contact the Department’s overseas approved panel physician or clinic.
What Happens After You Have Completed Your Required Health Examinations?
If no health issues are identified (or non-significant health issues), the Department will determine that you have satisfied the health requirements for Australian visa and will grant a health clearance. It will then continue to process your visa application.
Significant Costs Assessment
If health issues are identified, a Medical Officer of the Commonwealth (MOC), which is a registered medical practitioner appointed by the Department, will determine whether you meet the health requirements for Australian visa. The MOC will assess whether your health condition or disease is likely to result in significant health care and community service costs to Australia if a visa were to be granted.
Under immigration policy, the threshold for the level of costs that are regarded as ‘significant’ is currently set at $51,000.
If you are applying for a temporary visa, the MOC will estimate the expected costs to be incurred over the period of your proposed stay in Australia. So if you apply for a Subclass 500 Student visa for a term of two years and your estimated health care cost is $20,000 per year, you will meet the health requirement as this is below the threshold. But say you apply for a four-year student visa, you would not meet the health requirement as this would exceed the threshold over the period of your proposed stay as a student in Australia.
Note also that for temporary visas, certain health care and community services are excluded from the cost assessment.
For permanent and provisional visa applicants, the relevant period assessed will be five years, or three years if you are aged 75 years of age or older, unless:
- you have a condition that is permanent and the course of the disease is inevitable or reasonably predictable (65% likelihood) beyond the five year period – in this case, you will be assessed for a maximum of 10 years; or
- you have an inevitable or reasonably predictable (65% likelihood) reduced life expectancy due to your health condition or disease – in this case, you would be assessed for a time period up to a maximum of 10 years.
Prejudice To Access Of Australians To Health Care And Community Services
The MOC must also assess whether your condition or disease would be likely to prejudice the access of Australians to health care and community services if the visa were to be granted (i.e. would you require access to health care or community services that are in short supply (as advised by the Department of Health)?
According to immigration policy, prejudice to access is deemed to occur if in the MOC’s opinion, a hypothetical person with a condition of the same form and severity as yours would be likely to require access to the following services, which are considered to be in short supply:
- organ transplants; and
On this basis, the MOC will determine whether you meet the health requirements for Australian visa. If they assess that it has not been satisfied, the visa will not be granted, unless a health waiver is applied.
What Is A Health Waiver?
In certain specified circumstances, the Department may apply a health waiver, which means that Immigration will waive the need for you to meet the health requirements for Australian visa. A health waiver can only be applied to certain visa applications for which PIC 4007 is a requirement for the grant.
Where PIC 4005 applies, if an applicant (or a non-migrating family member) fails to meet the health requirement for a visa, there is no provision for a health waiver to be considered.
A health waiver can not be exercised if you fail to meet the health requirement due to:
- Having active TB; or
- Having a disease or condition which is, or may result in, a threat to public health in Australia or a danger to the Australian community.
A health waiver can be exercised in the following circumstances:
- The MOC has assessed that either you or a non-migrating family member has not met PIC 4007 due to having a disease or condition which is:
- likely to result in significant health care and community service costs; or
- prevent access of Australian citizens or permanent residents to these services (which are currently in short supply, such as organ transplants and dialysis);
- Immigration has determined that you have satisfied all other requirements for grant of the visa (i.e. it is the last stage in the visa assessment and processing stage); and
- Immigration has determined that granting the visa would be unlikely to result in undue cost to the Australian community or prevent access of Australians to these services.
You cannot apply for a health waiver. If this option is available, you will be contacted by your case officer to advise that you have not met the health requirements for Australian visa. You will have an opportunity to comment on the opinion of the MOC, provide information and complete a submission outlining the reasons why the health waiver should be exercised in your case (with appropriate supporting evidence to be supplied, as applicable).
Health waivers are assessed on a case-by-case basis, taking into account a number of factors, including:
- The capacity to mitigate the likely potential costs of your disease or condition, or lessen the impact of preventing access of Australians to services in short supply; and
- Any compelling and/or compassionate circumstances that may exist.
The Department will make a decision based on the above, and if it decides to exercise the health waiver, your visa will be granted. Otherwise, it will be refused.
What Is A Health Undertaking?
If you have a health condition or disease which is considered non-threatening (such as inactive TB or Hepatitis B or C), you may be requested to sign a health undertaking. This is an agreement with the Australian Government whereby you agree to attend a health clinic in Australia to follow up on your condition.
Signing the health undertaking will be a pre-requisite to granting the visa. In this case, the Department will determine that you have satisfied the health requirement. A health undertaking is valid for six months.
Under the agreement, you would be required to contact Bupa Medical Visa Services within 28 days of your arrival in Australia and provide any required information. You may be requested to attend an appointment at a specified health clinic. You must then undergo any treatment or investigation as directed.
What Happens If Tuberculosis Is Diagnosed?
Applicants who are offshore and are found to have active TB cannot be granted a visa as they will be unable to satisfy health-related visa criteria. Visa applications from such applicants will have their health cases deferred until they successfully complete TB treatment.
Where an applicant in Australia is found to have active TB (or for whom active TB has not been ruled out), their health case will be deferred and processing of their visa application placed on hold, until they are assessed as being free from TB.
Offshore applicants who are found to have latent TB will be able to travel to Australia but, if applying for permanent migration, they will likely be requested to comply with a health undertaking (as TB can develop at any time).
Applicants in Australia who have latent TB are not placed on a health undertaking but are provided with an information sheet and asked to attend a health clinic for further monitoring.
Another important aspect of the health requirement for certain visa classes is the need to make adequate arrangements for health insurance cover for the duration of your stay in Australia. It may also be applied as a visa condition once the visa is granted. For example, visa condition 8501, which applies to student visas, specifies that you must maintain adequate arrangements for health insurance whilst you are in Australia.
Minimum acceptable policies are specified for each visa class (where applicable), and you must ensure that you provide evidence to demonstrate that you meet this requirement before a visa will be granted. For some visa classes, only specific types of health policies are accepted (e.g. if you are applying for a student visa, you must be covered by Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)). The policy cover will need to be valid for a certain period to meet these requirements. Members of your family unit must also be covered by appropriate health insurance.
Some countries have a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement with Australia, meaning that you are entitled to Medicare benefits in Australia. This may be acceptable to satisfy minimum health insurance requirements in specified circumstances.
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Australia’s migration laws are complex, and each case is different. We recommend that you seek professional advice if you are interested in applying for a visa, including the health requirements for Australian visa and what is included in medical examination for Australian visa, as being fully informed will give you the best chance of achieving a successful outcome on your case. A migration professional can help you to do this. Also be aware that several terms are defined in the migration provisions. It is vital to have a good understanding of these terms and how they apply in practice. Detailed advice about these is beyond the scope of this article and we would therefore recommend that you seek further information in this regard.
For up to date advice on applying for a visa to Australia, including any medical tests for Australian visa in your circumstances, contact PAX Migration Australia, a leading immigration service providing advice on a range of visas, including parent visas. Contact us for a no obligation discussion on how we may be able to assist you in achieving your migration goals in Australia.
Australian Government – Federal Register of Legislation – Legislative Instruments – In force – As Made – Details: F2015L01826 – Migration Regulations 1994 – Specification of Required Medical Assessment – IMMI 15/144