Doctors and Pharmaceuticals

Doctors – GPs and Specialists

In Australia, a distinction is drawn between general practitioners and specialist physicians such as dermatologists, orthopaedic surgeons and anaesthetists. You are free to seek medical care from a general practitioner of your choice.

If you would like to visit a specialist physician or surgeon, you must first obtain a referral from a general practitioner.


Physician-prescribed pharmaceuticals can be expensive for overseas visitors.

Australian citizens, and those overseas visitors who are entitled to Reciprocal Medicare Benefits, have access to the subsidised Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). You must show your Medicare Card when purchasing physician–prescribed drugs and medicines to obtain the PBS rate.

Overseas Visitors without access to PBS rates generally pay considerably higher charges.

The Mid cover and Top cover provide benefits for out-patient prescribed pharmaceuticals on the PBS (after waiting periods) up to an annual limit of $1000 for Single Plans and $2000 for Couple / Family Plans.

All Plans provide benefits for pharmaceuticals provided as part of In–Hospital (In–Patient) care.