What is OSHC?

The Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) assists international students meet the costs of medical and hospital care that they may need while in Australia and will also pay limited benefits for pharmaceuticals and ambulance services.

Who is eligible to take out OSHC?

As an overseas student on a temporary student visa, it is a condition of your visa to maintain an OSHC insurance for the duration of your visa. This includes the student and their family members such as, spouses and children under 18 years old. For the purposes of OSHC, ‘overseas student’ means:

  • a person who is the holder of a student visa; or
  • a person who:
    • is an applicant for a student visa; and
    • is the holder of a bridging visa; and
    • was immediately before being granted the bridging visa, the holder of a student visa.

What is Private Health Insurance Rebate?

In order to encourage Australians to take out private health insurance, most people receive a rebate on their premiums from the government. This rebate is income tested, which means your eligibility to receive it depends on your income. If you have a higher income, your rebate entitlement may be reduced, or you may not be entitled to any rebate at all. Broadly, the more you earn, the lower the rebate.

Rebate and Tax Return

Most people claim the private health insurance rebate as a reduction in the amount of private health insurance premiums they pay to their insurer. Alternatively, it can be a refundable tax offset when you lodge your tax return.

Which Private Health Insurances are eligible for Rebate?

To claim the private health insurance rebate, regardless of your residency status in Australia, you must:

  • have a complying health insurance policy with an Australian-registered health insurer
  • be eligible for Medicare
  • be a private health insurance incentive beneficiary
  • have an income for surcharge purposes of $140,000 or less as a single, or $280,000 or less as a family.

Is the OSHC is eligible for Rebate?

Nevertheless, unlike Australian citizens who can use the public health system Medicare, to cover their medical and hospital expenses, overseas visitors and overseas students who hold temporary visas are not generally eligible to use Medicare public system for medical or hospital expenses. That is why overseas students are required to take the OSHC specifically for them In this case, because overseas students are not eligible for Medicare, the OSHC doesn’t comply with the health insurance policies established by the Australian Government, so the OSHC will not be eligible for the private health insurance rebate.