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Deakin Medical Centres provide medical care and health advice to international students. The Medical Centres are located on all Deakin University Campuses.
Opening hours and staff availability varies between Campuses so check by phoning or in person at your local Campus Student Life reception area.
Appointments with the Campus doctors or nurses are free if you have current Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). Exclusions to this include students with Australian Health Management (AHM) health cover and Norwegian and Swedish students who are required (due to their health care arrangements) to pay for appointments on the day.
Please bring your OSHC card or number each time you see a Campus doctor or nurse and always keep your health cover valid.
Tests, vaccinations, other health care professional consultations and medicines are usually not free. Please ask about costs whenever you request or are advised to have a test, vaccination or take medicines.
Deakin Medical Centre staff are experienced in providing health care to international students; have respect for your cultural background; and are aware of issues you may face as a student studying overseas.
Consultations are private and both doctors and nurses are experienced in a wide range of health care areas including care / advice when sick, vaccinations, skin care, diet and exercise, mental wellbeing and medicals.
An appointment is required to see a Doctor, you can drop into the centre if you wish to see a nurse. When you arrive for your appointment you will be asked to provide some information to assist us with your health care.
Standard appointment times are 15 minutes, however if you feel your problem requires more time ask for a 'long' or 'double' appointment.
If you are ill or injured on Campus phone security (on 222 from internal phones or 1800 062 579 from your mobile) and ask for medical assistance. If you are off campus or during the evening or weekends, phone 000 or 112 (some mobile services) and ask for an ambulance. Please note: Ambulance transport is not free in Australia. Your OSHC includes medical emergency ambulance cover only.
You can also obtain 24 hour, 7 days per week emergency medical care by attending a hospital with an 'accident and emergency department'. For details of your nearest hospital call directory assistance 1223 or look up the Yellow Pages. A full listing of metropolitan hospitals and rural hospitals or from the Department of Human Services.
When you see a doctor (known as a general practitioner or GP) off campus the amount you have to pay may vary. Costs depend on issues such as day of week, length / type of appointment and whether the doctor has seen you before. When making an appointment ask what the cost will be so as you are prepared.
Medicines in Australia are of high quality and are usually obtained from a pharmacy (chemist) rather than directly from the doctor or nurse. You can buy some medicines directly from the Pharmacy or you might be given a prescription from the doctor, which you then take to the pharmacy to obtain the medicine or vaccine. You are required to pay for medicines or vaccines, however keep all receipts as you may be able to claim from your OSHC fund.
Many students will be affected by the change in climate. Victoria can be wet, cold and windy and also very hot and dry. While you are adjusting it is not uncommon to experience:
Keep warm by wearing several layers of natural fibre clothes, a hat, shoes, socks and gloves and exercise daily. Wear a hat and sunscreen (30+) all year round to prevent sunburn. Avoid long, hot showers and strong soaps or body washes. If you experience any of the above or other symptoms make an appointment with the Campus doctor or nurse.
Follow the RED principles to enhance your health and study performance:
R: REST 7-9 hours sleep/rest every day.
E: EXERCISE 30 minutes every day.
D: DIET 3 plus meals every day.
Include lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, protein, rice, nuts and seeds in your diet. Eat breakfast and drink approximately 8 glasses of water every day (tap water is safe to drink in Australia). Avoid junk food and where possible buy fresh food which is in season, it will cost less.
Ensure you store your food properly, refrigerate foods if required and do not keep unused food for long periods.
The legal alcohol drinking age in Australia is 18 years. There are strict drink driving laws with the legal blood alcohol limit being 0.05.
Australian attitudes to sex and relationships may differ from those of your home country. Don't be pressured to have a sexual relationship however if you are sexually active, you need to protect your health by seeking advice about:
Deakin Medical Centre staff are experienced providing private and sensitive sexual health advice and testing for students.
Australia has a water-based culture and if you intend to enjoy your visit here by seeing some of Australia you will no doubt visit a beach or river. At the beach remember 'FLAGS':
F: Find and swim between the flags
L: Look at and read the safety signs
A: Talk to and ask the lifesavers about the beach and how to stay safe
G: Get a friend to swim with you. Never swim alone
S: Stick your hand up and wave your arm if you do get into trouble in the water.
(Source: Surf Life Saving Foundation 2008)
Enjoy your time at Deakin; study hard but don't forget to look after yourself, meet people and get involved in University life. Basic health care and lifestyle has an impact on study quality and progress.
If you find anything is getting too hard please ask for help! The Campus doctors and nurses are available to talk about anything that is worrying you and discussions are always confidential (unless you or someone else is in immediate danger).
For further enquiries or to make an appointment with a doctor or nurse, please contact one of the Deakin Medical Centres.