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  • Writer's pictureElan Rysher

Changes to Bupa visa medicals (updated 8 May 2020)

Updated: May 9, 2020

Bupa Medical Visa Services is the organisation responsible for immigration health examinations in Australia. Due to the unprecedented challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, Bupa is implementing changes to its operations.

Nurse wearing COVID-19 protection at a BUPA visa health services centre in Australia
BUPA has implemented anti COVID-19 measures

To reduce the risk of infections and promote social distancing, Bupa is rescheduling existing migration health examination bookings. In addition, availability for new bookings is being reduced and other safety measures are put into place at examinations centres across Australia. Here's what we know:

You have already booked an examination

Those who have already booked their medical will be notified shortly if their appointment needs to be rescheduled. No action is required from you. Bupa will contact you as soon as possible to reschedule your appointment.

If you do not hear from Bupa, your appointment remains unchanged.

You need to book an examination

Bupa is temporarily not taking new bookings. New appointments will become available in the coming days once existing bookings have been rescheduled.

Update 8 May 2020: You can now book your new health examination as usual. However, appointments are limited. As at 8 May 2020, the earliest appointments for standard examinations (including chest x-ray and HIV test) at the following selected locations are:

  • Sydney CBD- 19 June 2020

  • Melbourne CBD - 12 June 2020

  • Brisbane CBD- 1 July 2020

  • Parramatta- 3 July 2020

  • Adelaide - 3 August 2020

  • Perth - 6 June 2020

BUPA's immigration health examinations booking diary
Your health examination may be rescheduled

Your Case Officer asked you to do a medical

If you are waiting for a decision on a visa application, you might be required to undergo a health examination. The Department of Home Affairs typically issues such requests with a 28 days deadline. If you are in Australia, the medical can only be done at a Bupa visa health centre.

The problem is that there are no available appointments within 28 days at Bupa. This issue is likely to affect visa applicants in Australia for some time. At least while social distancing measures prevent Bupa from operating at their usual capacity.

No need to panic, there is a solution.

If you can show that you have booked your medical, Immigration will wait for the results, even if it after the 28 days deadline. Once you booked the appointment, you will receive a confirmation email from Bupa. Attach this email to your visa application on ImmiAccount. Your Case Officer will put your application on hold until they receive the examination results directly from Bupa.

Social distancing in a waiting room at a BUPA visa health centre in Australia
Expect social distancing measures inside the centre

What to expect at the health centre

Additional measures are being put in place to protect you and Bupa's staff onsite. When you arrive at the medical centre:

  • you will be screened for fever and/or respiratory symptoms

  • you will be asked about recent overseas travel or recent contact with a known case of COVID-19

  • you may be required to wait outside to meet physical distancing guidelines

  • you can't bring anyone with you to the appointment. People who require assistance may be exempted. You should contact Bupa to discuss this prior to your appointment

  • additional sanitary and distancing measures will be applied e.g. frequent hand washing and cleaning

Do NOT attend a Bupa medical centre if:

  • you have symptoms of fever and/or respiratory infection (cough, difficult breathing). You should seek medical care and wait for your symptoms to fully resolve

  • you have recently been anywhere overseas in the 14 days before your appointment

  • you have been in recent contact with a known case of COVID-19 in the 14 days before your appointment

BUPA visa health service Nurse filling out COVID-19 questionnaire in Australia
You will be questioned about overseas trips at the centre

What about offshore medicals?

Applicants who are outside Australia and need to undergo a medical for their visa application should contact the clinics authorised to conduct Australian immigration health examinations. If local COVID-19 measures in your country prevent you from undergoing the medical, obey these instructions and notify your Case Officer through ImmiAccount.

A few closing words

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, visa applicants are having to wait longer than usual for a visa health examination. The hold up at Bupa might delay the decision on your visa application. However, the Department of Home Affairs will accommodate these delays and wait for you to undergo the examination. Just make sure you attach your Bupa appointment confirmation to your visa application.

Have any questions? Post them below! (or contact us)


Information (or the lack of it) contained in ImmiUpdates should not be relied on as immigration assistance or advice. ImmiUpdates expressly disclaim any liability, arising at law, in equity or otherwise, for any information published or not published in past, the present or future editions of the blog. People seeking immigration assistance should seek advice from a registered migration agent and those seeking legal advice should consult a lawyer. The copyright in the newsletter belongs to Rysher Migration Services and no part of the blog is to be reproduced by any means without the written consent of Rysher Migration Services.


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