Travel Insurance to Australia with pre existing medical conditions

There are reciprocal healthcare arrangements between the UK and Australia. These arrangements mean that British citizens resident in the UK and travelling on a British passport are entitled to limited subsidised health services from Medicare Australia, this covers medically necessary treatment while visiting Australia. In-patient and outpatient public hospital treatment is normally free of charge or will incur a small cost. 

Unfortunately, this does not cover pre-existing conditions or treatment that does not require urgent attention. Renal dialysis is included but arrangements must be made for this prior to departure from the UK. Please contact your NHS renal unit for further details. You can also find further information from the FCO or NHS. You should check Medicare Australia for further details.

Other exclusions under the reciprocal agreement include medication when not a hospital in-patient, use of ambulance services and medical evacuations. This can cost vast sums of money – with some reported cases exceeding £100,000 for medical evacuations to the UK. By making sure you have a travel insurance policy you don't have to worry about the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation.

What to do if you get ill on holiday in Australia?

If you require emergency medical assistance during your trip to Australia the number to dial is 000 and you should ask for an ambulance. You must also make immediate contact with the 24 hour emergency assistance company, the details and phone number of which will have been provided when you purchased your travel insurance policy. This is particularly important for any treatment which is not available under the reciprocal arrangement. Contact must be made before treatment is started.

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Documents to take with you to Australia?

  • Evidence of UK residence (e.g. NHS medical card or UK driving licence) 

  • Temporary entry permit 

  • Travel insurance for your Australia trip – policy documents 

Health precautions in Australia

You must ensure you take extra health precautions when travelling in the Northern Territory, and parts of Western Australia, South Australia, Queensland and Tasmania. You should contact your GP approximately eight weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations or other preventive measures. 

Murray Valley encephalitis (MVE), Ross River fever (RRF) and Barmah Forest virus (BFV) occur periodically in parts of Australia. There is no vaccination against these viruses, but there are preventative measures that you can take, more details can be found at National Travel Health Network and Centre.

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