Short Stay Visitors Cover
This cover is suitable for the following visa types:
- Temporary work (short stay activity) visa (400)
- Working holiday visa (417)
- Work and holiday visa (462)
- Skilled recognised graduate (temporary) visa (476)
- Visitor visa (600)~
- Electronic travel authority (ETA) visa (601)~
- eVisitor visa (651)~
~Documentation to confirm enrolment in an Australian university, English language centre or other educational institution will be required for this visa subclass.
If your visa subclass is not on this list, you are not eligible for Short Stay Visitors Cover. Please note: If you are applying for a 482 Long Stay Working Visa, this cover is not suitable as it does not meet the adequate health insurance requirement as set out by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA). Also not suitable for overseas visitors requiring family cover or visitors over 50 years of age.
The following information explains what is included and what is not included. We will pay for all services included on your cover as listed below. Remember that you could incur out-of-pocket costs for some of these items.
Please note, when you click on ‘Find a Provider’, this does not include a full list of providers.
On all Bupa Hospital cover:
Bupa Medical Gap Scheme available
Operating theatre, intensive care, ward fees
Accommodation for overnight or same-day stays
How to read our table:
In hospital medical services
Outpatient medical services
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Understanding Your Hospital Cover
How Hospital cover works
Inpatient vs outpatient
You are an inpatient when you are admitted to hospital. We will pay for treatment included in your chosen product once the hospital admits you. You are not an inpatient if you only receive treatment in a hospital emergency department.
You are an outpatient if you go to hospital to receive treatment, but the hospital does not admit you (for example, you only undergo pathology tests or radiology services at the hospital and go home) or if you go to a doctor or specialist in private practice anywhere in Australia.
When to contact us
If you have been a Bupa member for less than 12 months on your current hospital cover, it is important to contact us before you are admitted to hospital to find out whether the pre-existing condition waiting period applies to you. We need about five working days to make the pre-existing condition assessment, subject to the timely receipt of information from your treating medical practitioner/s. Make sure you allow for this timeframe when you agree to a hospital admission date. If you proceed with the admission without confirming benefit entitlements and we (the health fund) subsequently determine your condition to be pre-existing, you will be required to pay all hospital charges and medical charges not covered by Bupa.
Does your cover include pregnancy?
If you are thinking about starting a family, we recommend you contact us in advance to confirm whether your cover includes pregnancy. This is because a 12-month waiting period applies and some of our products do not cover pregnancy and birth.
No waiting periods apply to your new baby provided they have been added to your hospital cover within 90 days of their birth.
What we will pay for
Hospital costs are charges that are incurred as part of your treatment in hospital. Some common hospital costs include:
- accommodation for overnight or same-day stays
- operating theatre, intensive care and labour ward fees
- supplied pharmaceuticals approved by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
- physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy and other allied health services
- surgically implanted prostheses up to the approved benefits in the Government’s Prostheses List
- private room where available
- reimbursement on emergency department fees charged at any private or public hospital including administration fees if admitted into hospital (or in all circumstances depending on your level of cover)
What happens if I am treated in a private hospital that Bupa has an agreement with?
Once you have served any waiting periods for your product, we will pay for medical treatment provided when you are a patient in private hospitals that Bupa has an agreement with, if it is included in your cover.
A small number of these hospitals may charge a fixed daily fee, which you must pay. This fee is capped at a maximum number of days for overnight stays. The hospital should inform you of this fee when you make a booking. This fee is in addition to any excess or co-payment you may have as part of your hospital cover.
At Members First Day Hospitals, you have the added benefit of no medical gaps in addition to being covered for hospital costs, provided the treatment is recognised by Medicare and there are no exclusions on your level of cover.±
± Not available in NT. Any co-payment or excess related to your level of cover will still apply.
We recommend you call us first before making a booking to confirm that your chosen hospital gives certainty of full cover. We can also discuss any excess or co-payment that might apply to your level of cover. You can find out if a hospital has an agreement with us by checking the find a healthcare provider section of this website.
Can I choose to be treated as a private patient in a public hospital or at a private hospital that Bupa does not have an agreement with?
If you elect to be treated as a private patient in a public hospital or are admitted to a private hospital that Bupa does not have an agreement with, you are covered as set out below for any treatment recognised by Medicare unless it is excluded or restricted under your cover.
In these circumstances, you are likely to incur out-of-pocket expenses for your hospital costs.
What happens if I choose a private hospital that Bupa doesn’t have an agreement with?
If you are admitted to these hospitals for any treatment recognised by Medicare that is included in your cover:
- You will have restricted cover for your hospital costs. At these hospitals, this means that you are likely to have large out of pocket costs.
- You will still be covered for prostheses up to the amount listed on the Government Prostheses List.
How do I pay these costs?
It is important to note that you will be responsible for the cost of your stay and may be charged directly for your hospital accommodation, doctor’s services (including any diagnostic tests), surgically implanted prostheses (such as artificial hips) and personal expenses such as TV hire and telephone calls. Some of these hospitals bill Bupa directly for the limited benefits we pay.
What happens if I choose to be a private patient in a public hospital?
What we pay for:
If you are admitted to these hospitals for any treatment recognised by Medicare that is included in your cover:
- Overseas Visitor Working Cover: You will be covered for hospital accommodation. Shared room accommodation for restricted services, nil benefit for excluded services
- Overseas Visitor Non-Working Cover: You will be covered for hospital accommodation. For restricted services, reduced amount equivalent to shared room benefit for Australia resident. Nil benefit for excluded services.
- Both Overseas Visitor Non-Working and Working Covers:
- Depending on your level of cover, if you choose to stay in a private room, Bupa may pay an additional fixed amount towards the cost of your stay. If this amount is less than what the hospital charges you, the hospital should let you know what you will have to pay yourself.
- You will still be covered for prostheses up to the amount listed on the Government Prostheses List. If your specialist charges more than this amount, you will need to pay it yourself.
For what medical costs (like specialists fees) we pay for, check the medical costs section.
Other costs I might have to pay myself:
As a private patient in a public hospital you will also be responsible for personal expenses such as TV hire and telephone calls together with any Medical Gaps your doctor/surgeon charges.
Will I get a private room?
It is important to note that in public hospitals, private rooms are generally allocated to people who medically need them.
What does this mean for my choice of doctor?
As a private patient in a public hospital you are entitled to choose your doctor, if they are available. Depending on your illness or condition, this may be the same doctor who would have been allocated to you by the hospital as a public patient. Additionally, whether a doctor provides treatment at a public hospital, or performs a particular procedure in a public hospital, is outside of Bupa’s control.
What does this mean for when I can get treatment?
At a public hospital, even if you are treated as a private patient - it is important to understand that you may still be subject to public hospital waiting lists.
Inpatient medical costs
These are the fees charged by your doctor, surgeon, anaesthetist or other specialist for any treatment given to you when you are admitted to a hospital as an inpatient. Depending on your level of cover, we cover you for either the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) Fee, the Australian Medical Association (AMA) Schedule Fee, or 100% of the cost. The Schedule Fees mentioned above are the fees determined by the Australian Government and the AMA respectively, as the appropriate fee for a specific service for Australian residents. If your doctor or specialist charges more than the Schedule Fee there will be a ‘gap’ for you to pay. Please check your level of cover to determine which (if any) benefits apply.
Bupa Medical Gap Scheme
The Bupa Medical Gap Scheme is designed to remove or reduce the costs you pay for your treatment in hospital. Where a doctor chooses to use the Scheme for your treatment, they agree to only charge up to a certain fee. Bupa then pays a much higher amount than we normally would to help cover the extra cost. If a doctor uses the no-gap option, Bupa covers all of the extra charges, so you pay nothing for that doctor’s medical fees. Otherwise, for each doctor choosing to use the Gap Scheme, the most you’ll pay is up to $500 out-of-pocket on medical costs. Each doctor involved in your treatment can choose to use the Bupa Medical Gap Scheme for your admission in a Public Hospital, or a Private Hospital with which Bupa has an agreement.
See www.bupa.com.au/medicalgapscheme for more.
Outpatient medical costs
This is cover for any treatment you receive where you are not admitted into hospital in Australia from a doctor or specialist in private practice (including diagnostic services such as radiology and pathology). Depending on what is set out in your level of cover we will cover you for up to 100%, 150% and 200% of the Medicare Benefit Schedule Fee (MBS Fee) or 100% of the cost for the outpatient services. The MBS Fee is the amount determined by the Australian Government for a specific service for Australian residents. If your doctor or specialist charges more than the MBS Fee there will be a gap for you to pay.
We will determine the appropriate MBS item number for the service that has been provided, which may, in limited cases, be different from the item number provided. This can mean the amount we cover is lower than the benefit for the item number on your treatment bill, and there may be an additional cost to you.
Please check your level of cover to determine which (if any) benefits apply.
Outpatient pharmacy benefit
You can also receive benefits on selected pharmacy items prescribed as an outpatient or by a doctor or specialist. Please check your product summary to determine the benefits and co-payment that apply. This is provided the pharmacy items usage is approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and not appearing on our exclusions list.
Please note for Short Stay Visitors Cover you can receive benefits for pharmacy items that are PBS listed and the usage is approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and not appearing on our exclusions list.
On selected covers, you will receive cover for repatriation to your country of origin if you become terminally ill or if you suffer a substantial life altering illness/injury up to $100,000. Or for the return of mortal remains up to $10,000. Benefits are only payable once approved by Bupa.
No Repatriation Benefit will be paid if, within the six months prior to the date your cover commenced, you were:
- first diagnosed as terminally ill;
- a reasonable person would have first become aware of the terminal illness; or
- if you suffered a substantial life altering illness or injury.
Family In-Hospital Benefit
On selected covers, you could receive benefits for accommodation and meal costs if your partner, immediate family member, carer or next of kin is required to stay at hospital with you or a person on your membership. They will be covered for $60 per night for accommodation in hospital and up to $30 a day for hospital meals.
Hospital meals are covered when provided at a hospital cafeteria or patient meal menu.
Crutches and wheelchairs benefit
On selected covers, you will receive a benefit for crutches and wheelchairs.
For a benefit to be payable, the hire or purchase must be linked to an inpatient admission resulting in the requirement of the item. We will not pay benefits without evidence of a hospital admission.
If eligible, we will pay 100% of the cost up to a maximum limit of $500 per person per calendar year for any hire or purchase of crutches or wheelchairs.
On selected covers there may be an excess option which may lower the amount that you pay for your cover. Excesses are only payable on overnight and same-day inpatient hospital admissions in any hospital.
The total excess amount is paid each time a person on your membership is admitted into hospital, to a maximum of once per person and twice per membership each calendar year unless otherwise specified. If the total excess amount for an individual is not reached in a single hospital admission, the remaining balance of that excess is payable in any subsequent hospital admission. No excess applies to your dependent children. Please contact us for further details.
What we won't pay for
Situations when you are likely not be covered or may incur significant additional expenses include:
- depending on your level of cover, if you have not been admitted into a hospital and are treated as an outpatient (e.g. emergency room treatment, outpatient ante-natal consultations with an obstetrician) you may not be covered.
- during a waiting period
- when a service is excluded from your cover
- when a service is covered as a minimum benefit and you are admitted to a private hospital, you will not be covered above the restricted services.
- for the fixed fee charged by a fixed fee hospital or a hospital that has a fixed fee service.
- for psychiatric and rehabilitation day programs, at a hospital Bupa does not have an agreement with
- hospital treatment provided by a practitioner not authorised by a hospital to provide that treatment
- hospital treatment for which Medicare pays no benefit, including: medical costs related to surgical podiatry (including the fees charged by the podiatric surgeon); cosmetic surgery where not clinically necessary; respite care; experimental treatment and/or any treatment/procedure not approved by the Medical Services Advisory Committee (MSAC)
- personal expenses such as: pay TV, internet access, non-local phone calls, newspapers, boarder fees, meals ordered for your visitors, hairdressing and any other personal expenses charged to you unless included in your cover
- if you are in hospital for more than 35 days and you have been classified as a ‘nursing home type’ patient. (In this situation you may receive limited benefits and be required to make a personal contribution towards the cost of your care) if you choose to use your own allied health provider rather than the hospital’s practitioner for services that form part of your in-hospital treatment (e.g. chiropractors, dieticians or psychologists)
- where compensation, damages or benefits may be claimed by another source (e.g. workers compensation)
- for any amount charged by a public or non-agreement hospital which is not included by us or which is above the benefit that we pay
- for any treatment or service provided outside Australia
- for some non-PBS, high cost drugs
- for pharmacy items not opened at the point of leaving the hospital unless covered on your visitors or extras cover
- labour ward fees and pre-existing conditions on Short Stay Visitors Cover
- when you are treated at a non-agreement hospital you will not be fully covered
- some hospital-substitute treatment and operative services that are a continuation of care associated with an early discharge from hospital
- for any treatments arranged in advance of your arrival in Australia
- if you do not hold a valid visa at the time of admission to hospital and for the duration of your hospital stay.
Please note that no cover is provided for Cosmetic Surgery. See our glossary for a definition.
You will not be covered for:
- Medical services for surgical procedures performed by a dentist, surgical podiatrist, or any other practitioner or service that is not eligible for a rebate through Medicare
- Costs for medical examinations, x-rays, inoculation or vaccinations and other treatments required relating to acquiring a visa for entry into Australia or permanent residency visa.
- Outpatient pregnancy services when provided out of hospital (including hospital outpatient clinics when you are not admitted) on Essential Lite Visitors Cover, Essential Visitors Cover and Essential 50 Visitors Cover.
- Outpatient psychiatric services when provided out of hospital (including hospital outpatient clinics when you are not admitted) on Essential Lite Visitors Cover, Essential Visitors Cover and Essential 50 Visitors Cover.
Waiting Periods - Hospital
A waiting period is the time when you are not covered for a particular service. It starts on the date that you enter Australia or the date that you start your membership, whichever is the later date. If you receive a service or treatment during a waiting period, you are not eligible to receive a benefit payment from us, regardless of when you submit the claim. Different waiting periods apply for different services. If you’re switching from another private health insurer, you may be eligible to have some waiting periods that you’ve previously served honoured on your new level of cover.
The following waiting periods may apply for hospital cover:
Ultimate Corporate, Top Corporate and Top 90 Corporate, Premium 90, Premium, Mid 60, Essential 50, Essential and Essential Lite Visitors Cover waiting periods:
- Pre-existing conditions, ailments or illnesses – 12 months
- Palliative care, rehabilitation, hospital psychiatric services and assisted reproductive services – 2 months
- Pregnancy (including childbirth) – 12 months
- Travel and accommodation – 2 months
Standard and Standard 50 Visitors Cover waiting periods:
- Hospital psychiatric and rehabilitation services – 12 months. From 1 June 2021 Rehabilitation will be removed as included services.
- Pre-existing conditions, ailments or illnesses – 12 months
- Travel and accommodation – 2 months
Short Stay Visitors Cover waiting periods:
- Palliative care, psychiatric and rehabilitation services – 12 months
- Travel and accommodation – 2 months;
Understanding your Ambulance Cover
You will receive unlimited emergency ambulance services. That means we will pay 100% of the charges for emergency transportation and on-the spot treatment, by our recognised providers**.
You will receive limited non-emergency ambulance services. This means your cover will be limited to three times per person, per calendar year, for non-emergency transportation by our recognised providers. Please refer to your policy information for more information**.
**Short Stay Visitors Cover has emergency only ambulance cover.
A 1 day waiting period applies for emergency ambulance and on-the-spot treatment and non-emergency ambulance transportation on Standard Visitors Cover and Standard 50 Visitors Cover.
Recognised Ambulance Providers
Bupa will only pay benefits towards ambulance services when they are provided by any of the following recognised providers:
- ACT Ambulance Service
- Ambulance Service of NSW
- Ambulance Victoria
- Queensland Ambulance Service
- South Australia Ambulance Service
- St John Ambulance Service NT
- St John Ambulance Service WA
- Tasmanian Ambulance Service.
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What you'll need handy
01. Visa details
02. Payment details
03. Current health cover
~ Documentation to confirm enrolment in an Australian university, English language centre or other educational institution will be required for this visa subclass. If your visa subclass is not on this list, you are not eligible for Short Stay Visitors Cover. Please note: If you are applying for a 482 Long Stay Working Visa, this cover is not suitable as it does not meet the adequate health insurance requirement as set out by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA). Also not suitable for overseas visitors requiring family cover or visitors over 50 years of age. The following information explains what is included and what is not included. We will pay for all services included on your cover as listed below. Remember that you could incur out-of-pocket costs for some of these items.
± Not available in NT. Any co-payment or excess related to your level of cover will still apply. ** Short Stay Visitors Cover has emergency only ambulance cover.