Getting Medical Help - OVHC - Allianz Global Assistance

Getting medical help - OVHC

For medical emergencies

If you have a life-threatening medical emergency, go to your closest public hospital emergency department or call 000 immediately for help.

All public hospitals in Australia have a 24-hour emergency and casualty department where you can get help after hours and on the weekend.

People waiting in emergency are assessed and treated based on how serious their medical condition is. Patients with the most urgent problems are seen and treated first. If you attend the emergency department with a less serious medical condition, you may need to wait a long time to be treated.

If you’ve been admitted to hospital and have an OVHC policy with us, contact us immediately on 1800 814 781 so we can help you with your payment arrangement to the hospital.

Our 24-hour helpline

We can also help you with:

  • 24-hour medical advice and assistance
  • 24-hour referrals to a doctor for medical treatment
  • access to a solicitor for legal advice
  • access to an interpreting service
  • any messages which need to be passed to your family or friends in the event of an emergency.

Call 1800 814 781

Need to see a doctor?

If you’re sick but you do not require urgent or emergency medical attention, you may want to consider visiting a doctor (also known as a general practitioner or GP) at a medical centre.

You can access many services through your GP, including:

  • General medicine and simple diagnostic testing
  • Assessment and treatment of health problems and injuries
  • First aid services
  • Women’s and men’s health
  • Referrals to specialist services

The best time to think about finding a doctor is when you’re well and have the time to find the right doctor for you and your family.

There are a number of considerations. What’s important to you? Would you be more comfortable with a personal recommendation? Is public transport access necessary? What about after hours?

Here are some ideas:

  • Ask friends, neighbours, colleagues and family members which doctor they see.
  • Search for a doctor who speaks your language or understands your cultural sensitivities.
  • Look up doctors’ clinic addresses on a map to make sure you are familiar with how to get there.
  • Check the website of your local transit authority to find out if public transport options are available.
  • Call medical centres to find out if they have male and/or female doctors available.
  • Find out which local centres are open at night.
  • Ask medical centres if they also have treatment rooms or if you would have to visit a public hospital if you are injured.

Once you have found a doctor that you feel comfortable with, you know you can tell them your private concerns and you feel safe in their quality of care.

In the event that you fall sick and someone is looking after you – or your children if they are sick – you should keep a record of your doctor’s phone number so that you (or your child) can be sent to your preferred clinic or medical centre.

Some useful tips include:

  • Save the numbers in your mobile phone
  • Write your preferred doctor’s number on a note and keep it handy in your purse or wallet
  • Keep important medical phone numbers on your fridge or next to your landline telephone
  • Make sure you provide your children’s day care, school, sports club or babysitter with your doctor’s phone number

Finally, it’s not always when we’re sick that we need to find a doctor. Sometimes, we have other reasons for visiting a medical clinic, such as:

  • When you need immunisations (either for an infant or child, or for further overseas travel).
  • To obtain a medical certificate to be excluded from certain activities
  • For a medical examination in order to make an insurance claim, apply for insurance, apply for a new job or a promotion
  • For an annual check-up for health issues such as cholesterol, diabetes and so on
  • When someone in your family is diagnosed with a genetic condition and you want to find out if you are also at risk
  • To have a prescription written for ongoing medication that you take
  • To talk about a health concern that is worrying you
  • For a referral to another medical professional
Direct-billing medical providers

We have a network of medical centres and doctors that offer direct billing services. Using our network of providers makes it easier for you to claim when you visit a doctor. All you need to do is provide your valid membership card and the provider will bill us directly for the covered amount of your bill. With direct billing, the doctor bills us directly. Make sure you select a doctor or medical provider that specifies they can direct bill.

Your appointment

Once you’ve found a doctor or medical centre in our provider network that’s convenient for you, you’ll need to make an appointment. Make sure you bring your valid Allianz Global Assistance OVHC membership card and photo identification to your appointment.

If you would like to see a doctor who is not in our provider network, you may need to pay the full amount owing on the day and submit a claim to us to get your benefit.

Need to go to hospital?

If you’ve been referred to hospital for treatment, contact us on 1300 727 193 before you’re admitted so we can help you with your payments to the hospital.

Hospitals in Australia – in both the public and private systems - can be found in every capital and major city. In the larger cities, there will be many hospitals, often specialising in specific areas of medicine. For example, there are many dedicated children’s hospitals in Australia.

Regional cities often have only one or two hospitals. In small, country towns, there may not be a hospital available for hundreds of kilometres. In this instance, there are often medical centres that can treat some emergency medical conditions.

Many hospitals in Australia are public hospitals. This means, they are provided by the Australian Government and Australian and New Zealand citizens and Australian permanent residents can seek treatment there free of charge.

However, some overseas visitors are required to pay for their medical treatment at hospitals in Australia if they are not a citizen of a country that does not have a reciprocal health care agreement.

Public hospital

If you have a valid OVHC policy, we’ll cover the cost of your stay and treatment in a shared ward of a public hospital subject to the coverage outlined in the policy wording.

As a public patient, your doctors will be nominated by the hospital. When you leave hospital, your care may be continued in a clinic or a specialist's private rooms or you may be referred to your local general practitioner.

Private hospital

If you choose to be treated in a private hospital, we’ll contribute benefits towards treatment and shared ward accommodation, but you may need to pay more than what you would in a public hospital.

If you call us before you go into hospital, we’ll be able to provide you with an estimate of what it might cost you.

Other Information

When are hospitals in Australia open?

It is important to find the right medical treatment provider for your injury or illness. Most hospitals in Australia provide 24-hour emergency medical treatment. These accident and emergency departments should only be visited if you have a medical emergency.

Upon arriving at the hospital, you may be assessed by a nurse. This will determine the urgency to treat your medical condition. If yours is not an urgent case, it can be a very long wait until you are seen by a doctor. All cases that are deemed to be an emergency will be seen ahead of lower priority cases.

If you are sent to hospital by ambulance, you will be prioritised for treatment upon arrival.

How can I get treated at Australian hospitals?

If you are an overseas visitor, you can obtain a health insurance policy that enables you to be treated at hospitals within the Australian health system, if required.

Policies that cover treatment for visitors within Australian hospitals can be for individuals, couples or families.

Ensure you have your OVHC membership card with you when you attend health care providers within Australia.

What sort of treatment can I receive at Australian hospitals?

Medical services provided at Australian hospitals include:

  • General medical treatment
  • Accident and emergency treatment
  • Operations and surgery as treatment
  • Prescription drugs and medicines.

Some treatments are not covered by your policy. Check the Policy Wording for full details.

How do I pay for medical treatment at Australian hospitals?

If you have OVHC, your policy may cover some of the costs for treatment at hospitals in Australia.
Depending on the treatment you require and which hospital you are in, there may be additional expenses incurred.

To understand the types of treatments and potential costs associated with your medical care at hospitals in Australia, please read the Policy Wording of your OVHC policy.

Take your OVHC membership card with you when you attend Australian hospitals for treatment.

Did you know?

You may incur an out-of-pocket fee (known as a gap fee) if the amount the medical provider charges is more than the benefit you’re entitled to under your cover. You’ll need to pay the gap fee yourself and won’t be able to claim that amount. We recommend you call your doctor or hospital before visiting to get an idea of what it will cost you.

Need to see a specialist?

Medical specialists are doctors with additional education and training in a specific area of medicine. Examples of specialists include:

  • Cardiologist
  • Dermatologist
  • Gynaecologist
  • Paediatrician
  • Oncologist
  • Neurologist

To see a specialist, you’ll need a referral from your GP.

Need to buy medicine?

Some medicines need your doctor’s authorisation before a pharmacist can sell it to you. If your doctor has prescribed you medicine, you’ll need to bring your doctor’s prescription for the medicine and a form of identification to the chemist with you.

Still need help?

Our team is here to answer your questions