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804 and an expired medicare card.

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I recently headed down to centrelink with my mother to re-new her medicare card that had expired. ( mum lives here on a bridging visa whilst waiting for an 804 aged parent visa )

So, she was told that she needed a EHIC card in order to renew the medicare card as it has been more than 5 years since she moved her from the UK and also, that she is not to be treated in a private hospital.

However, when looking to get another EIHIC card the requirement is that you are resident in the Uk to receive it.

Just to confuse things further, when she got home, she had a call from the hospital telling her that the knee operation that she needs has been outsoursed to a private hospital and will be getting a date shortly for surgery.

Ok, so through previous experience with centerlink, I know that sometimes they don't get it right.  Does anyone have experience of this problem?




Tassie Rules OK

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They are wrong about needing a EHIC card.  Here is the relevant excerpt:

"How long your cover lasts

It starts the day you arrive in Australia.

When it ends depends on the country you’re visiting from. You can only use it while you have a valid visa.

It ends on the day your visa expires if you’re from:

  • Finland
  • Norway
  • the Republic of Ireland
  • Sweden
  • the UK

It ends on the day your European Health Insurance Card expires, or the day your visa expires if earlier, if you’re from:

  • Belgium
  • the Netherlands
  • Slovenia"

You can refer them to this page:  https://www.humanservices.gov.au/individuals/services/medicare/reciprocal-health-care-agreements/visitors-australia/medical-care-visitors-australia#a2

However, they are right about the private hospital:

What’s covered

The agreement covers:

  • medically necessary care as a public patient in a public hospital and out of hospital care

What it doesn’t cover

It doesn’t cover:

  • medicines that aren’t in the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
  • Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme medicines for In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF)
  • care planned before you got to Australia
  • care for Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART)
  • private hospital care
  • public hospital care as a private patient
  • ambulance travel
  • dental care unless it’s in the Chronic Disease Management scheme
  • care from a physiotherapist, occupational therapist, speech therapist, eye therapist, chiropractor, podiatrist or psychologist unless it’s in the Chronic Disease Management scheme
  • acupuncture unless it’s from a doctor
  • glasses and contact lenses
  • hearing aids and other devices
  • prostheses
  • costs someone else is responsible for - for example an insurer, employer or government agency
  • care that isn’t clinically essential
  • cosmetic surgery
  • checks for life insurance or superannuation or to join a friendly society
  • home nursing





Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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Thanks Marisawright


I also thought that they must be wrong regarding the EHIC card, but the lady down there was quite insistent about it, so this link is great!


So, regarding the knee op, do you think that she should ring the lady from the hospital back, and explain that she is on a bridging visa, and therefore was under the impression that she would not be able to receive treatment in a private hospital, only a public hospital?

Not sure where to go regarding this, as maybe it is dependent upon circumstance? We are in Tassie btw, where the hospital system is under serious pressure at the moment, and all necessary surgeries are going down this route ( from what i understand )



Tassie Rules OK

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I would imagine that the public health system is paying for the op but will be done in a private hospital, but she should still be a public patient.

Edited by shaunfreo

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