During the programme, the trainee must maintain adequate health insurance for themselves and any dependants as a requirement from the Department of Immigration and Boarder Protection (visa condition 8501).

As a general rule, temporary residents are not eligible for any medical treatment in Australia, including emergency medical treatment which would usually be covered under Medicare (the government funded national health program for Australian citizens).

The health insurance that you need to take out is different to private health insurance packages that Australians will generally access; it will be defined as either:

  • non-resident health cover; or
  • overseas visitor health cover.


Many Australian insurance companies have overseas health insurance products or you may choose to take out health insurance with an overseas health insurance company.  If required IFS can assist you in applying for the appropriate health cover

If you are a resident/citizen of a country that has entered into a “RHCA” with Australia

The Australian Government has entered Reciprocal Health Care Agreements (RHCA) with selected other governments to cover some medically necessary treatment for illness or injury incurred by migrants and visitors to Australia.
In this case you may only be required to obtain health insurance for travel to Australia and a temporary period in Australia until you arrange to receive your Medicare card.


At present these countries include:




the Netherlands


New Zealand

the Republic of Ireland



the United Kingdom


The Medicare website has a complete list of countries covered by RHCA and more information on what’s included in RHCA.

If your country of residence is covered by an RHCA and you are eligible for Medicare, you are still required to take out health insurance in order to cover your journey to Australia and until the date you are granted your Medicare card