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Thread: Health care coverage in NZ

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    13

    Post Health care coverage in NZ

    Hi,

    As a skilled migrant with a WTR or Res Visa for two years, can I expect to receive health care in NZ just like citizens do? Or must I keep my awful insurance policy in the US? And, do people usually take out private policies similar to european countries, and if so, why?

    thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Papamoa
    Posts
    361

    Default

    I just got my Residence Visa stamped in at the NZ emabassy in DC while I was there visiting. They have a whole bunch of material that outlines what you get as a resident and various resources. As a resident you do get the same health coverage as a citizen. With that said you may still want private insurance in NZ but it is MUCH less than you would pay in the states. Plus I'm not sure your US insurance will do you any good in NZ.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    486

    Default

    I think that technically you are entitled to the same health and medical care as a NZ citizen if you are here on PR or a three year WP. However, if you are on a 2 yr WP you may be treated as an overseas visitor and receive only certain medical care for free. But in practice I think it depends on the medical staff that you come into contact with... I have heard on these boards of people on 1 yr WH Visas receiving full free treatment, and women on 2 year WPs receiving full free maternity care.

    Standard care here in NZ is somewhere between the UK and the US. Accidents are treated for free through the ACC scheme, though you may be expected to contribute to the initial Dr's assessment and / or some X-ray costs or transport costs. I broke a couple of fingers a while ago, and have had excellent care. I paid $45 for the initial assessment, all X-rays / treatment / follow up appointments / extensive and ongoing physio have cost me nothing. ACC would also have provided me with some financial and other assistance if I had been unable to work. For routine GP care, you do pay for GP care ($40 - 50 for an appointment) and for medicines. Not sure about the situation for illness rather than accident - ACC is strictly for accidental injury. Lots of people here do have private cover.

    HTH

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Pompy UK - Rangiora SI
    Posts
    993

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ruthyroo
    Not sure about the situation for illness rather than accident - ACC is strictly for accidental injury. Lots of people here do have private cover.

    HTH
    If you are refered by a GP you are under the public health system and this is free. My OH has a long term illness and the treatment recieved under public health is excellent. The only downside to this is the inevitable waiting lists for initial appointments.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    13

    Default two year rule

    I just read on the ministry of health site that one must have a visa good for two years from the date of entry to receive coverage. My WTR visa already has the clock ticking (some weird new policy) while I still stand here in the states wading through NZIS paperwork. Seems we got "deferred" in our skilled migrant application. So until "upgrading" by finding a skilled migrant job while in NZ, and subsequently receiving a real two year visa, sounds like I have no coverage.

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