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New health requirements mean processing delays, especially for sc457 visas

medicalAn estimated 180,000 visa applicants currently doing an x-ray only to meet the health criteria will soon be required to complete a medical examination as well, under the department of immigration’s new health standards. In addition, 30,000 children under 11 years, will be required to be screened for TB.

The new health requirements announced by the DIBP last Friday, mainly affects temporary visa applicants and will come into effect on 20 November 2015. It is expected to slow down visa processing times – particularly those of sc457 applications from selected countries who will be required to undergo more thorough health checks.

DIBP announced that a new health matrix will be introduced whereby there will only be two risk levels with health examinations: required or not.

Under the new system, visa applicants from over 100 countries considered ‘safe’ will generally not be required to undergo health checks for stays in Australia of six months or less. DIBP estimates that 40,000 applicants per year will not be expected to undergo medical examinations.

However, the nationals from several countries including Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Singapore and South Africa are among those not on the ‘safe list’.

The new Health Policy Advice Manual (PAM) will be released on 20 November 2015 and will be available on LEGENDcom. This will contain policy details of the changes. Enquiries, including questions related to operational arrangements, can be made to:


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