Health Insurance 408 Visa

Compare quotes to find health insurance which covers your application for a 408 temporary activity visa. 

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, updated on August 31st, 2023       

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We’ve partnered with Compare Club to bring you a range of health insurance policies to help you compare them side by side.

Are you looking for health insurance to apply for a 408 visa so you can stay in Australia for a temporary activity? Many people from around the world are welcomed to Australia every year for special events which are endorsed by the Australian Government. Many such events require a 408 visa to allow the participant to stay in Australia. 

If you’re looking for health insurance to apply for a visa, Savvy can help you compare your options. You can consider health policies from a panel of leading insurers to see whether they offer you the health cover you need. You can get the process of securing your health insurance started through Savvy today.  

How do I get health insurance to apply for a 408 visa?

Health insurance suitable for a 408 visa application is known as Overseas Visitors Health Cover (OVHC). This form of health insurance satisfies visa condition 8501, which is an Australian Government requirement to hold adequate health insurance whilst visiting Australia, as foreign nationals aren’t covered by the Medicare system. The need to hold adequate health insurance applies to many Australian visa subclasses, not just to 408 visa applications.  

You can buy this health insurance through Savvy. All health insurance policies offered by Savvy’s partners are compliant with the 8501 visa condition. We’ll help you get a range of free quotes so you can compare what they offer and make your choice about which is suitable for your specific needs. The process involves: 

  • Answering a few simple questions about the health insurance you need, such as is the cover just for yourself or for others in your family 
  • You can request a call-back and a health insurance specialist will contact you and help you with your decision 
  • If you’re happy with the options available to you, you can go ahead and lock in the cover you need for your 408 visa 

What are the inclusion requirements for health insurance for a 408 visa?

These are the Australian Government required criteria for meeting the 8501 health insurance condition which applies to your application for a 408 visa: 

Required inclusions for OVHC 

  1. Must offer basic public hospital insurance to cover the costs of treatment in a public hospital for most services
  2. Must include insurance for emergency ambulance transport to hospital 
  3. Must provide some cover for all pharmaceuticals (medicines) which are usually covered by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) 
  4. Must provide cover for treatments listed under the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) 

All of the overseas visitors health policies offered through Savvy comply with these conditions, so you won’t have to worry about your health cover not being adequate for visa purposes. However, you should still take time to compare policies, as there can be some exclusions with health cover that could mean you’re out of pocket if you do need certain types of treatment. These may include: 

  1. Cosmetic surgery 
  2. Other surgery not considered medically necessary (like tummy tucks and breast augmentation or reduction for cosmetic reasons)  
  3. Laser eye surgery
  4. Tattoo removal 
  5. Pregnancy and birth 
  6. Assisted reproductive services (for example, IVF treatment
  7. Some alternative health therapies 
  8. Acupuncture 
  9. Non-PBS medications and pharmaceuticals 

How much will it cost to get health insurance for my 408 visa?

The cost of your visitors health insurance will depend on which level of cover you choose to buy. It’s usually offered on a month-to-month basis, so you’ll only have to pay one month in advance to take out a complying policy.  

Hospital cover is available in a range of different levels. All of these policies cover you for the  costs of most services while you’re admitted to hospital as an inpatient. To comply with regulations, you’ll need to buy a policy that covers the minimum requirements for your visa. However, you may find that a more expensive, higher-tier policy offers a wider range of treatments that are covered, which may better suit your needs. 

The same applies to extras cover, which can help you with the cost of fees when you visit a doctor, dentist, physio or chiropractor. Extras cover can provide some money back when you receive treatment in the community, but not when you're admitted to hospital.  

More expensive policies will offer more in terms of benefits and will mean you pay less out-of-pocket for each treatment you receive. For example, a cheap policy might give you 50% back on the cost of a visit to the physiotherapist, but a more expensive policy may offer you 85% of that cost. 

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Why compare health insurance through Savvy?

Frequently asked questions about health insurance for 408 visas

Will the health cover provided by my travel insurance cover me for my 408 visa?

No – in most cases, the health cover offered with travel insurance won’t be adequate to satisfy the needs of your 408 visa. However, you should still check with your insurance company to find out if the cover offered is 408 visa-compliant.  

Will I still have out-of-pocket expenses if I have 408 visa health insurance?

You may still have out-of-pocket expenses both for a hospital stay and also for visiting a doctor or physiotherapist, as well as any other eligible extras health services. The amount you’ll be out of pocket will depend on how much you wish to spend on your health insurance and the level of cover you choose to buy and the providers fees. As mentioned, you’ll likely receive a certain percentage back when making a claim, so you may need to make up the difference. 

Will my health insurance cover the cost of returning home if I get sick or injured while I’m in Australia?

This will depend on the policy you buy. The cost of returning home is called repatriation expenses. Some policies allow $5,000 to $20,000 for this, while other cheaper policies don’t offer this option at all, which is why it pays to compare your options and be clear on what is and isn’t covered before you buy. 

Are there waiting periods for health insurance with a 408 visa?

Yes – there may be waiting periods for the health cover you purchase. Waiting periods for hospital and extras cover can vary between insurers but we can help you navigate these. Examples of hospital waiting periods are:  

  • 2 – 12 months for psychiatric treatments, rehabilitation or palliative care (even for a pre-existing condition)  
  • 12 months for pregnancy and birth-related treatments 
  • 12 months for all other pre-existing conditions 
  • 0-2 months for most other services

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