Moving to Australia – Part Ten

Open Wide… Say Ahh….and Cough. Thank You.

Laustralian-approved-doctorast week in Moving to Australia Part Nine (you can access ALL previous parts through that link) I mentioned that the medical, for me, was the scariest part of this whole process. Now, I know MY medical is relevant only to ME. But reading my story may give you a better idea of what you can expect in this part of the process. It may also help you to avoid “opening a can of worms” unnecessarily. It’s a long story, but I can assure you, it was much, much longer when I lived through it. So, here we go.

Firstly, I should say that at the time of the medical I was 49 years of age and I considered myself pretty fit. I was playing five aside football twice a week for the full hour each session. I gave up smoking when I was 33. I had no fear of the medical. Except….

Back in 2000, a long long time before we had the idea to move to Australia, something strange happened to me. I completely lost my sense of smell. The most common reasons for a loss of sense of smell (according to Dr Google) are:

  • Viral infection
  • Head trauma
  • Nasal and sinus disease

So I went to the doctor and the doctor didn’t know. So he referred me to a specialist. So I went to see the specialist and the specialist (who got right up my nose AND gave me an MRI brain scan) didn’t know. “Just one of those things” – he said. And discharged me.

Around 2004 with my sense of smell now completely gone and taking my sense of taste with it, I went back to the doctor. (Sound of can of worms opening). He referred me back up the line which eventually led to an appointment with the National Ear Nose and Throat Clinic in London. By the time my appointment with them came up, (you know how slow the NHS can be) it was June 2006.

As you will know from my timeline, this is six months after we had decided to emigrate to Australia.

The good people at that clinic could also find no reason for my anosmia, as it is called. But they wanted to refer me on to a neurologist who specialised in loss of smell. I should have just said no, but it’s tough when you can’t taste your bacon sandwich.

My appointment with him took place at the end of January 2007, about six months after our application to emigrate to Australia had been submitted. This man had all sorts of theories of possible causes for my problem and wanted me to attend his personal clinic for further investigation. The earliest appointment he could offer me (he was a busy man) was October 2007. I was hoping to be in Australia by then! And that’s what I told him.

“Really?” he said, “with this existing condition, you will not pass the medical unless, at the very least, you have a full body CAT scan which proves to be completely clear.”


That wasn’t what I wanted to hear. His advice was to book a scan up now, otherwise for sure, the Australian approved doctor will request one and that will only delay our application.

A full body scan was the last thing I needed. Those scans show up everything! If there was the slightest problem with any organ or any cell, anywhere in my body, the scan would pick it up. Lovely! But I took his advice and my scan appointment was made for the beginning of May 2007.

If you read last week’s post link you will know that we were allocated a case officer on April 27, 2007. Can you see how nicely these dates are converging? I got the result of my CAT scan on May 17th and my medical with the Australian approved doctor was on May 23rd.

The day the letter turned up with the result of my scan is one I will never forget. I held the envelope in my hands for some time. Realising that was getting me nowhere, I took a deep breath and began opening it. I don’t think it is an exaggeration to say that our futures were about to be decided by the contents of a single sheet of A4.

Underneath my name it simply said “This patient’s CT of the chest and abdomen was normal.”


Six days later I was having my Australian medical. I took with me two things. One was the sealed envelope which contained my chest x-ray taken a couple of weeks earlier. The other was my letter with the result of my scan.

The Chest X-Ray

I believe everybody over the age of 11 has to have a chest x-ray, they cost around £100. A quick tip on that. You are not told the result of your chest x-ray, the doctor seals it and signs across that seal. So when you have it done, be nice and friendly to the person who does the x-ray. Tell them it’s for Australian migration purposes, that always opens up the conversation and tells them you’re not having an x-ray because your doctor thinks you are ill.

Once the x-rays are done, the radiologist always checks that the images have come out okay before sending you on your way. After they have done this, say something like “Well? Will Australia have me?” You’ll get a good idea from the answer. Mine said “Oh, you’ll be just fine”. If she had turned white and refused to answer, that may have indicated a problem.

So, back to the medical. It was a very thorough and as predicted by the other doctor the conversation turned toward the investigations into my condition. Trying my best not to be smug, I explained that I had been seen by a whole host of experts and had every test imaginable, including an MRI and some rather fetching internal nasal photography. Nobody can find anything wrong. I then said these tests culminated with a full body CAT scan and I have the results.

With that, I handed him my scan results letter, which I had begun to look upon as my passport to Australia. He read it and then he looked at me and said…..

“No, I need the full results, this is no good. Please get me the full results of your scan and I also want to see copies of the complete records which you can obtain from your doctor and in particular, I want to see the original discharge from the first specialist you saw and I want the full copies of correspondence between you, your doctor and between him and the second specialist. It will take me a week to receive back the results from your urine test (told you it was thorough) and if you get the information I require to me by then, I will included in my report to the Australian government. If I haven’t heard from you by that time, I will send my report as is and it will then be up to the Australian authorities to decide based on the information they have. Thank you. NEXT!”

My next seven days were so much fun. I discovered how useless my local doctor was at keeping records. For example, he could find all the correspondances about my admissions to specialists but none of those confirming me being discharged. I discovered that the only valid full report of my CAT scan was somewhere in a truck on its way to a secret storage vault run by the NHS and could take weeks to locate, (hello, this is 2007!) even though my test had only been conducted within the last couple of weeks. I also discovered that my specialist, whom I had hoped would discharge me in view of the scan results, was in Paris and then going straight on to Turkey.

I pulled together the information required by the Australian approved doctor in nine days instead of his requested seven. But as there was a bank holiday Monday in between, it was possible I could still get the information to him in time. When I arrived at his surgery on Friday 1st June 2007 to hand deliver the information, he was not there. To this day I have no idea whether the extra stuff was included with his report or not. I could see no reason to try and find out.

I just waited, again. This time, nervously.

For a full chronological list and brief description of all the posts in this series about how I moved to Australia, please visit my page How to Move to Australia.

Visa Assessment Service
Visa Assessment Service
{ 152 comments… add one }
  • Holly August 10, 2016, 7:50 pm |

    Hi, just wondering if you have ever heard of anyone passing/being rejected with a relatively recent (in the last couple of years) history of an eating disorder which involved hospitalisation but is now in good recovery?
    Thanks in advance if you can offer any insight/educated guesses 🙂

    • BobinOz August 11, 2016, 9:02 pm |

      No, I haven’t Holly, and as far as I’m aware this isn’t something that should cause any problems with your application from what I’ve heard. Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement” for more information.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Katrina July 6, 2016, 3:48 pm |

    Hi, I am a registered mental health nurse about to apply for the skilled visa for myself and my family, however, feeling anxious about the medical assessment for my 14 year old son, he has a diagnosis of aspergers (Very mild) with no additional medical care or support at school, he attends main stream and is expected to achieve average results and go on to lead an independant life. Do you have any advice in this area please?

    • BobinOz July 7, 2016, 12:43 am |

      Yes, Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement”. From what you are saying about his condition, I think reading what the government says about the medical will probably put your mind at rest. Good luck, Bob

  • Deepti June 22, 2016, 3:12 pm |

    hello bob,
    I want to know if u or anyone reading this have any idea about carrying medicine while travelling to australia ( next month). I have hypothyroidism(also declared in medicals) and take single dose of medicine everyday. The medicine is available in a bottle of 100 tablets which would be dose of more than 3 months(90 days). I have read that some special permission is required to carry medicine of more than 3 months. So what do i do ? Should i unseal the bottle and carry only half of tablets?? and where should i declare that i have medicine??when the declaration form is given??

    • BobinOz June 23, 2016, 12:51 am |

      The short answer to your question is I just don’t know. What I would suggest though, is if you are coming here for less than three months then yes, break open the bottle and just bring enough tablets to get you by. That way you do not have to declare it.

      It might be an idea to bring some kind of evidence of a doctor’s prescription for your medication, just in case somebody asks. It’s prescription medicine, I’m pretty sure no one will give you a hard time about it. Enjoy your visit, Bob

  • Sarat April 29, 2016, 5:43 pm |

    Hi Bob
    I am in Australia on a employer sponsored 457 visa and is working for almost 2 years.I have applied for a visa 189 and is awaiting an invitation. The question I am having is that if my visa 189 is refused due to medical conditions for example HIV positive, would it impact my existing 457 visa? Also would this be notified to my employer.

    • BobinOz April 29, 2016, 9:25 pm |

      I don’t know is the short answer. I’m not even sure a MARA agent would be able to answer this one accurately, but if you have concerns, that would be who I would speak to first. Good luck, Bob

  • Pranjal April 13, 2016, 4:50 am |

    I am getting the medicals (for visa subclass 189) done for myself and my family on 13th April 2016.
    The doctor has suggested that there may be a blood test required for my son who just turned 2 yrs few days ago. After that, an expensive vaccination may also be required for my son.
    Is this really required for a child of this age or the doctor is just a rip-off?

    • BobinOz April 13, 2016, 11:17 pm |

      I honestly don’t know, I’m not a doctor and I don’t know anything about your son. If this doctor is on the Australian list of approved doctors I’m sure he wouldn’t say it if it wasn’t true, but then again, who knows?

  • Rose March 14, 2016, 1:40 am |

    I did my medical exams last year December .I had a previous history of TB and I was referred to do sputum for culture and sensitivity, which came out negative a and was referred to do a repeat chest case officer Told me that the results were referred to global health for clearance. I was supposed to start classes last month on 29th and I have never heard anything from AHC. I had applied for 573 visa here in will I be denied visa or be granted visa.please advice.

    • BobinOz March 14, 2016, 5:38 pm |

      I couldn’t tell you, the only people who can answer that question are in the immigration department. Good luck though, Bob

    • mekgan July 16, 2016, 2:22 am |

      hi there!!!
      I am in the same situation rn and im so confused. Its been culture reports are negetive but theyve asked me to wait for one more month for a repeat xray and i dont know if they will grant me a visa or not after that.even tho i know i dont have tb now.
      did they grant you a visa?
      if your visa was granted, i am sure i have that chance too.

  • Samuel January 19, 2016, 6:12 pm |

    Good day,

    I just received an invitation to apply for 189 PR, I want to know at what stage will I get my HAP ID to do my medicals? Do I need to complete my visa application and pay the fees, submit the application before I get HAP ID? Can I do the medicals before completing and submitting the application online?

    I have an existing medical condition, what are you advising I do before going for the medicals?

    Thank you.


    • BobinOz January 19, 2016, 10:31 pm |

      These are questions I can’t answer, read any article under my Migration Advice section for why. You need to talk to a MARA migration agent if you need assistance with your application. Good luck, Bob

      • Mon June 12, 2016, 12:16 am |

        I got your hap ID when after applying and paying. As not everyone has to do the medical, and mediclas differ. In your application it will state what you will need to do. Mine didn’t state medical until I put the application in. Also, depends completely on what medical condition you have. More info on the Australian Immigration website.

  • Cathie September 27, 2015, 6:18 pm |

    Hi, our family just completed our medicals and everyone except my husband had category A. He had Category B. Does this mean that he failed his medical exam? Thanks in advance Bob!

    • BobinOz September 28, 2015, 5:52 pm |

      Usually the results of your medicals are only known to the doctor and the immigration department, the results aren’t usually shared with the applicants. I’ve also never heard of this kind of categorisation either, so I simply can’t help you or answer your question.

      I’m afraid you will probably have to wait for the answer from immigration. Good luck though, Bob

  • Baggi September 25, 2015, 11:33 am |

    Hi Rob,
    Just have found out your blog and read about medical examination. I have to say, like other readers, it was really informative and helpful. I have applied for 190 visa and required to undergo health examination. Could you tell me what the process was like during medical examination? What do they check? Could you please give some insight as detailed as possible? I had thyroid cancer removed in Dec, 2014 and underwent radiation therapy in Mar, 2015. I have to take thyroid medication for the rest of my life. Do you think it will affect negatively on visa decision? Thank you.

    • BobinOz September 26, 2015, 12:19 am |

      Well, they are quite thorough. I pretty much got naked for my one; cough, lights in eyes, torch down the throat, that sort of thing. Just doctors doing what doctors do, I think the whole thing took about half an hour.

      If you have a condition as you have had, the doctor may well ask you to get hold of your complete medical records, they did with me. I couldn’t tell you whether your condition will affect your application or not, that’s down to the doctor and the immigration department.

      For more information Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement”.

    • Adriane February 12, 2016, 6:29 am |

      Dear Baggi,
      I am in the same situation. I have applied for the 475 Visa and after the health examination, I received a letter informing that my health assessment was deferred. I also had Thyroid cancer (papillary carcinoma) and it was removed in a surgery a year ago. No other additional treatment was required, but I have to take thyroid medication for the rest of my life.
      In the letter, the immigration asked me a detailed report from my oncologist. Did they asked the same to you? Did you get the Visa?
      I am afraid of having my visa refused.
      Thank you.

      • Mani May 16, 2016, 10:30 am |

        HI Adriane,
        I am in the same boat as you. Did you get the VISA approved ?? I am still in the process of applying

    • Mani May 16, 2016, 10:33 am |

      Hi Baggi

      I am in the same boat as you. Did you get the VISA approved ??

  • djmcbell September 10, 2015, 6:40 pm |

    This is now us – we’ve got our medicals pretty soon! After that, I gather the remainder of the visa process is pretty quick. Here’s hoping!

    • BobinOz September 13, 2015, 5:43 pm |

      I’m sure by now you have already read part 11…

      Yes, things do move quite fast at this stage, we had an unusual delay with ours, but we still didn’t need to wait too long and I hope you don’t need to either. Fingers crossed for you djmcbell.

      • djmcbell September 15, 2015, 5:48 pm |

        Well, this was our (long) weekend:

        Friday – Blackpool Pleasure Beach! A yearly tradition, and possibly the last time we go whilst resident in this country. Great park, and it was quiet as anything. We did 11 rides (nearly all roller coasters) inside 3 hours! Pity about the baby changing facilities (when will places accept that, in 2015, MEN also help with children?). Good weather, nigh-on 20 degrees.

        Saturday – started out incredibly dismal, then brightened up. Went to a gig and remarked on how dirty everything was – rubbish everywhere. Also got ID photos for the police check (£5 to use a photo booth!).

        Sunday – I always Skype my parents near Melbourne on Sunday, and they had (at about 5:30pm their time) temperatures of 27 degrees! Marvellous! I explained to them that, if I had Skyped them at the same time on Saturday, I would have needed the light on. Went out later and saw my breath. Took my son to the park and took a photo (not attached) of how much rubbish there was in the park itself.

        Monday – MEDICALS! Needless to say I won’t describe much, other than I had blood taken, urine sample, physical exam, chest x-ray etc. Submitted the police check. So, providing everything goes through (medicals now seem to take 3-5 days to process), this is officially our 1-year (maximum) warning. Still got to sell the house and get a lot of other stuff sorted. Before we went for the medical I noticed a quick article on the news about our local city centre re-considering whether or not to introduce a congestion charge (currently it was “no”, at least last time I heard). Submitted police checks too.

        And now here we are, in the “shorter-than-it-used-to-be” waiting period. On the news today – families of children who “play too loudly outside” (in the only tiny concreted space they have – it showed it, the size of a few cars) could be evicted. If that becomes the norm, well, I just pity children sometimes – childhood seems to be disappearing somewhat sharpish (I think I’ve told you about the new school just down the road, that doesn’t have a playing field).

        • BobinOz September 15, 2015, 8:54 pm |

          Sounds like you had a fun weekend, cough!

          Also sounds like you’ve got everything done, it’s all pretty much down to waiting now, nothing more you can do. A school without a playing field? We don’t get many of those around these parts 🙂

  • Subha September 1, 2015, 3:34 am |

    Hi Bob,
    I have chronic kidney disease with serum creatinine 3.9 am 39 years old as of now treatment not expensive please help me in knowing if my medical condition will lead to rejection of Australian pr please.

    • BobinOz September 1, 2015, 4:16 pm |

      You need to Google “fact sheet 22 the health requirement” for the governments info on that. Good luck, Bob

  • Lee August 4, 2015, 5:40 am |

    I have bipolar disorder but full qualifications as a welder we are thinking of moving g to Australia a sap with my family I haven’t been ill for 3 years and am in stable medication will this affect me getting into Australia?

    • BobinOz August 4, 2015, 4:53 pm |

      Same answer as above to Ronnie, so check out that fact sheet, I’m sure it will answer your question more comprehensively than I can. Good luck, Bob

  • Ronnie July 19, 2015, 12:15 pm |

    Hi Bob
    I am living in Australia from last 6 years and recently diagnosed with diabetes. Next year I am going to apply permanent residency now my question is does diabetes effect to get pr.

    • BobinOz July 20, 2015, 12:40 am |

      If you Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement” then you will see what the Australian government has to say about passing the medical.

      I can’t tell you whether it will affect your application or not, only DIBP can, but checking out their fact sheet will give you a good idea about the health requirement for Australian migration. Good luck, Bob

  • jen May 21, 2015, 1:20 pm |

    Hi bob
    Recently my husband has been diagnosed as pre- diabetic and he is 29 yrs old. I am planning to file spouse visa for him. Would he fail in the medical check up.

    • BobinOz May 21, 2015, 7:03 pm |

      I really don’t think so Jen, my understanding is it is only highly infectious diseases and ongoing conditions that are very expensive to treat that actually worry immigration, but if you Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement” you can read the statement in full and then you will know about as much as I do.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Melissa April 28, 2015, 10:32 am |

    Thank you so so much for your advise Bob! All the best , cheers, Melissa.

  • Melissa April 25, 2015, 9:50 pm |

    Hello Bob,
    First like to say thank you so much for sharing your experience and trying to help everyone like us who looking to stay in Australia. I am a permanent resident of Australia and got married with my husband- he is now on a partner visa. I am a bit concerned his medical result will effect his PR application. He had hepatitis B but no need any treatment or medicine. Everything is normal and will not effect anyone else. He also recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes Mellisa. But last blood test is normal, he didn’t do any treatment nor medicin as doctor advised no need, just diet- controlled. He is 30 years old and quite fit. His last body check shows everything is normal. However, I am really concern if his medical history will make his application refused. Could you please give some advise? Will a Letter from the doctor help? Thanks a ton!!! Melissa

    • BobinOz April 27, 2015, 4:06 pm |

      Thanks Melissa 🙂

      My understanding with the medical is that it is usually only conditions that require expensive ongoing treatment or those which could be contagious. So I think your husband will be okay, but if you Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement” you will know as much about it as I do.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Aman sodhi April 6, 2015, 6:07 am |

    Hi Bob!
    Can u please provide me little info..
    I am having tattoo on my arm..can I clear this medical

    • BobinOz April 7, 2015, 5:21 pm |

      Only a doctor can let you know if you can clear the medical, but you won’t be refused simply because you have a tattoo on your arm.

  • Aman sodhi April 6, 2015, 5:42 am |

    Hi Bob!
    Can u please provide me little info..
    I am having tattoo on my arm..can I get study visa for Australia for MBA health department?

  • Aishleyk April 4, 2015, 1:34 pm |

    Hi Bob!
    I arrived in Australia 15 days before. I’m doing Elicos now for 10 weeks. Then I’ll commence on main course of bachelor on July. I want to bring my husband here as soon as possible. Can i apply for him now or not? And do i need to submit any letter or permission from University?

    Thank you!

  • alysha March 31, 2015, 12:19 am |

    At what stage of your medical to get into Australia do they contact your own doctor for your medical records

    • BobinOz March 31, 2015, 4:50 pm |

      In my case I was asked to provide additional information from my doctor after I had the Australian medical. I don’t think it’s the same for everyone though, I think it actually depends how your medical goes when you have it with the Australian authorised doctor.

      But I really don’t know for sure, things may well have changed and I don’t think many people know what actions are being taken behind the scenes during this whole process.

  • Anna February 27, 2015, 9:39 pm |

    Can one eyed person apply for student visa in Australia?

    • BobinOz March 1, 2015, 9:09 pm |

      I really can’t see that being a problem, so yes, feel free to go ahead and apply.

      • Shelly March 19, 2015, 4:46 pm |

        i have applied for visa but when i go through medical i found myself kidney infection.can i get visa for australia.

        • BobinOz March 19, 2015, 9:25 pm |

          I couldn’t tell you precisely Shelly, that’s for DIBP to decide. If you Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement” you will find some information that might help you. Good luck, and I hope you get that kidney infection under control.

  • mamoon jamil February 13, 2015, 8:36 pm |

    I have to lodge an application for the Visa clause 489. Which allows a temporary stay of 4 years in Australia My concern about the health assessment criteria is My Age is 30 Years Right Now and I have partial Vision in My Left Eye (means Blur vision and can only judge things due to some renal issues) and can see through the Right eye through glasses. I will be grateful if you can help me in this regard whether I can qualify for the assessment or Not.

    • BobinOz February 16, 2015, 1:25 pm |

      I’m not sure what you mean by “qualify for the assessment or not” but if you Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement” then you will know is much as I do about medical conditions that are likely to cause a problem.

      Hope that helps, Bob

    • Jithin May 13, 2016, 1:55 pm |

      Hi Mamoon,

      I am also into the process of visa application ?
      Did you get through the examination and got your visa ?


  • Vinod February 8, 2015, 5:49 pm |

    Hi there,
    I applied for subclass 189 and did my medicals yesterday. While checking my eyes, the ophthalmologist told that my left eye is has “suspected glaucoma”. I don’t know and he was reluctant to explain more about it. As far as I know, I can read all the letters and I am having a 6/6 vision for both my eyes. He asked me to show his report to a different doctor on the same floor. She told me that it is only suspected and I may do a thorough check up in a different hospital to confirm.
    Will they write this to the DIBP that I have glaucoma suspected in my left eye? Will that be a cause to deny me visa?

    Thank You

    • BobinOz February 9, 2015, 6:17 pm |

      If I am not mistaken, the treatment for glaucoma is an inexpensive one-off operation, so I really don’t think it should be a problem, but obviously I cannot speak on behalf of DIBP.

      What I can suggest though is that you Google “Fact Sheet 22—The Health Requirement” for more information. They have listed the criteria there, I think it will put your mind at rest. Good luck, Bob

      • Vinod February 11, 2015, 12:45 am |

        Thank you, Bob.
        I went for a thorough checkup with an ophthalmologist and after a couple of small tests he told me I don’t have glaucoma. Can I go to the panel physician and give these reports and update to the DIBP?

        • BobinOz February 11, 2015, 6:46 pm |

          Glad to hear it worked out okay with your eyes, can’t help you with your question though, I’m not a MARA agent and cannot advise you whether you’re ready to proceed.

          Good luck, Bob

  • Elle January 1, 2015, 8:35 pm |

    Hello there, wanted to say I understand the joys of the undiagnosable anosmia! This happened to me back in 2005 & after similar tests & speacialist appointments. My Dr is happy to shrug his shoulders & c’est la vie!
    I was wondering if there is any updste on your condition, have you had any luck with the Austrslian Doctors? I have been told here in England that it is a waste of time to scan again, despite almost 10 years with the condition!

    • BobinOz January 4, 2015, 9:16 pm |

      Hi Elle and I’m afraid the answer is no, I still can’t smell a thing (that’s about 15 years now) and I haven’t actually even bothered asking any of the Australian doctors to look into it further.

      I took it just about as far as I possibly could in the UK, I ended up seeing a woman who was top honcho at London’s ear nose and throat clinic, she even had her own TV program about allergies at this time. She had a jolly good look and shrugged her shoulders.

      One of the other specialists I’d seen along the way said it’s just one of those things, the same way that sometimes people just go blind. Hey ho 🙂

      I could start the whole thing off again here and go see some specialists, but this time it will cost me probably $200 a visit and I’m not sure there is anything to be gained. I think doctors and specialists in the UK did a pretty thorough job, so I think I’m stuck with it.

      If ever anything changes for me here, I will certainly post it on this page, similarly if you manage to have a breakthrough somehow, it would be great if you could let me know.

      Other than that, bacon sandwiches and mowing the lawn will never be the same again for either of us 🙂

      Cheers, Bob

      • Elle June 30, 2016, 12:59 pm |

        Hi Bob, thought I’d update on the situation. Been in Oz now for just over 7mths & during the warm summer months i was convinced i could smell BBQs & sunscreen! I even guess correctly a few household items with my eyes closed. Figured the climate change had helped with a breakthrough. However, since the cold weather hit im back to nothing, not even a whiff of sea breeze. I’ve been told warm smells are easier to detect, cooking & the like over a cold pint of beer?! On the plus side with all the beautiful scenery & amazing new people I’ve not once felt sorry for myself about being different or missing out. So maybe positive thinking will help & I’ll get a smell of this awesome country as well?

        • BobinOz June 30, 2016, 6:34 pm |

          That’s interesting, I haven’t noticed that myself. For me it doesn’t matter if it’s hot or cool, I still can’t smell a thing.

          What you may find interesting though is that the head honcho specialist I saw asked me “do you get phantom smells?”

          This, she explained, were moments when I would be convinced I could smell something. And I do get that on occasions, but apparently it’s just something that happens to us anosmics.

          I’m not saying that’s what’s happening to you, but it might be. We will just have to regard it as all part of the fun. Glad to hear you are enjoying this beautiful country.

  • adrian December 29, 2014, 7:57 am |

    Hello Bob, your blog is both fantastically informative and very amusing and I also believe you have the patience of a saint (some of the questions you get asked are truly fantastic)!! Anyway I am in the final stages of a 457 visa application and will be moving out to Brisbane once (and assuming) my AIR registration is approved. Thank for all the information with regards to cost of living comparisons, I did wonder if I should have pushed for more money, especially as the Australian dollar is not as strong as it was, however I have been greatly reassured by your post. Your website, blogs and general info are much appreciated. All the best and thank you, adrian

    • BobinOz December 29, 2014, 11:53 pm |

      Hi Adrian and thank you so much for your kind words about my website and my patience. I do count to 10 quite a lot though 🙂

      I hope your move goes smoothly and you find yourself here in Australia sometime soon, and when you do get here I hope it’s everything you want of it. Do let us know how it goes, cheers, Bob

  • mustakim November 25, 2014, 3:34 pm |

    i am from india
    i want to go to australia for study , i have lazy eyes can it will affect to my student visa application ?
    i cant see only long distance small words otherwise i can see also i can drive. but i have lazy eyes.give me ans and help me.

    • Jithin May 13, 2016, 1:58 pm |

      Hi Mustakin,

      I am also into the process of visa application ?
      Did you get through the examination and got your visa ?


  • shell October 3, 2014, 12:59 am |

    Hi Bob,

    My partner is epileptic and is on tablets for life. I believe this shouldn’t affect his chances of being accepted but wondered what the prescription costs are like….


    • BobinOz October 3, 2014, 6:26 pm |

      Prescription costs vary from medicine to medicine and I think it might also depend on what type of visa you secure to come here to Australia. So I simply can’t help with this one. You may have to rely on good old Google.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Gary Slaven August 12, 2014, 8:28 am |

    Hi Bob,

    My wife and I are looking to maybe emigrate to Australia in the next 2 years with our 2 young children.i have a couple of concerns with myself & hope you could maybe help me with,firstly the medical,7 years ago I had a kidney removed that was infected so at present I’m living with just the one healthy kidney,will that effect the medical?Secondly I was banned from driving for 6 months for totting up 12 points,none for dangerous driving,just caught on mobile whilst driving & twice for doing 50 in a you think that will effect my application?

    Kind Regards

    • BobinOz August 12, 2014, 6:03 pm |

      Hi Gary

      I can’t speak on behalf of immigration, but I don’t think that driving ban will affect your application at all. As for your health, assuming your condition does not require expensive ongoing medical treatment, that shouldn’t be a problem either.

      If you do need ongoing medical treatment though, and that is likely to cost more than $40,000 (the current figure used by immigration) in your lifetime, then it could be a problem.

      Hope that helps and good luck.


      • Gary Slaven August 12, 2014, 6:25 pm |

        Hi Bob,

        Thanks for the reply,my medical condition is perfect,havnt had any problems at all since i had the surgery 7 years ago,im young fit & healthy so i wouldnt need any ongoing medical treatment.hopefully the aussies will see it that way as well.

        Kind Regards


        • BobinOz August 13, 2014, 5:46 pm |

          I’m sure they will Gary, good luck, Bob

  • Taufique Hasan July 18, 2014, 11:30 pm |

    Hi Bob

    I have been reading your blog for over a year now and consider it to be a great source of genuine information about Australia.

    I have submitted my EOI and application for state sponsorship for a 190 visa. I have a question regarding the medical. I have a 8 year old son who is non -verbal autistic. Is this going to disqualify me from the process?

    Thanks very much for your help in advance,


    • BobinOz July 20, 2014, 9:32 pm |

      Hi Taufique

      Glad you like my blog 🙂

      I can’t speak on behalf of immigration, but I think it’s unlikely your son’s condition will cause a problem, Australia is most concerned about illnesses that are either highly contagious or very expensive to treat on an ongoing basis. So I think you’ll be okay.

      If you Google “Australian health requirement” you’ll find a page with more information from the Australian government which you may find helpful.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Jonathan June 24, 2014, 1:28 am |

    Hello Bob
    I graduate next year as an aviation engineer.
    I’m 22 and single with no health problems.
    I have decided I want to move to Australia on a permanent basis.
    Am I able to apply to emigrate to Australia prior to completing my degree next year.
    There is no reason why I should not pass my degree.
    Is it advisable to use a migration agent registered of course?

    • BobinOz June 24, 2014, 6:30 pm |

      Until you have a degree Jonathan, you won’t be able to claim the points that it gives you. So depending on your situation, you may have to wait until you have completed your degree before you can apply.

      I would always suggest using a MARA registered migration agent these days, the fees the government charges for visas are very high and if you make the application yourself and it gets refused, you would lose those application fees completely.

      It may cost more to go through an agent, but I think it’s safer.

      Cheers, Bob

  • Shaun June 2, 2014, 6:39 pm |

    Hi All

    I’m extremely alarmed to hear that the medical process demands CT scans for some visa applications. CT is an examination that uses ionising radiation in large doses. If you have a serious illness, the risk of receiving this radiation is outweighed by the risk of the illness. But if you’re not ill a CT is not a good idea and is an unnecessary risk.

    Just to let you know the risk. A CT head will make you three times more likely to develop a brain tumour over your lifetime. And a full body CT (Head, Chest and Abdo) – this is scary – every 2273 CTs done will cause a DEATH by inducing cancer

    Oz looks great, but if it comes to CT I prefer my DNA in one piece … Shaun

    • BobinOz June 3, 2014, 4:17 pm |

      Hi Shaun

      The medical process does not demand that all applicants have a CAT scan and at no point did any Australian representative asked me to have one, I had one on the advice of a medical specialist who I was seeing about a particular medical condition at that time.

      It’s all quite clear above.

      Even at my appointment with the Australian approved Doctor for my medical, he simply asked me about the condition and I pre-empted it by producing the CAT scan report, so I couldn’t tell you whether or not he would have specifically asked me to get one, but he certainly wanted to know more about my condition.

      If you read the full story above, you’ll see that my application would have gone in with or without the full report, to this day I don’t know whether it got sent as part of my application or not.

      The choice of whether or not to have a CAT scan is with the applicant, Australia will not force you to have one, as far as I know. They do reserve the right to deny you a visa if they are unsure of your medical condition though, on that basis I felt it was in my best interest to have one.

      Hope that clears it up.

      Cheers, Bob

  • Vanda April 16, 2014, 7:44 pm |

    Hi Bob,

    We are in the process of moving to Australia with my husband.He is getting sponsored by a company so we are applying for 457 visa.My husband is a type 1 diabetic.Apperently we need to get health insurance before we move to Oz.It’s a little difficult to find an insurance company who will insure him with his condition.we tried Iman and they rejected him because they said his diabetes is a pre existing condition.Can you recommend any companies who would accept him even with diabetes?I know that UK has reciprocal health care arrangement with Oz.Can we rely on that?We were thinking to get health insurance and then once we get to Oz he could apply for the Medicare card.Also I’m from Hungary but I live in the UK for 6 years now.If we need to obtain a police check,do I need to get it from the UK or from Hungary?

    • BobinOz April 17, 2014, 2:20 pm |

      Sorry, I simply don’t know who to suggest. There are a lot of healthcare comparison websites out there, I’m afraid I think you will simply have to go through them all.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Annie April 15, 2014, 9:56 pm |

    You wrote getting asked to provide medical and police check is a good sign? Would you say that’s still the case?
    After 4(!) years we finally got a case officer and we just had our medical. However I am convinced they will dig through form 80 with details since birth (!) to find a reason for rejection (like gaps in employment or the likes). Would they have asked for the medical and police check if they are planning to reject us?

    • BobinOz April 16, 2014, 2:11 pm |

      I still think it is a good sign Annie, medicals and police checks are the final step. For the life of me I don’t know why they would ask for them to be done if they were not happy with all your other paperwork. Let’s face it, they’ve had long enough to look through it all 🙂

      Unfortunately, I still don’t know for sure that’s what they do, it’s just my guess. Fingers crossed for you, do let us know how you get on. And don’t worry, I think everybody goes through these final doubts at this stage, I know I did.

      Cheers, Bob

      • Annie April 16, 2014, 8:34 pm |

        Thanks Bob 🙂

  • Andy March 15, 2014, 3:54 am |

    Hi Bob

    Great blog really very useful I have a couple of questions and if you could help I would be very grateful .

    I have to take regular medication for cholesterol, I pay for these myself anyway so I assume this would not be an issue?

    I also have 2 dogs and two cats but they will need to go my life would not be worth living !! my question is one of the dogs is a German Shepard cross not sure what he is crossed with though, probably Labrador would this be an issue as I ve sen that hy-breeds are not eligible but hes just a cross breed ?

    what do you think



    • BobinOz March 16, 2014, 10:16 pm |

      Hi Andy

      Your meds for cholesterol really should not be a problem, if the WHO had their way, we would all be on them 🙂

      As for your dog, there should not be a problem there either. There are some dogs on the banned list, but a German Shepherd crossed with (probably) a Labrador does not present a problem, just as long as it is not crossed with a wolf or a dingo 🙂

      Good luck, Bob

  • ozbird1 March 8, 2014, 9:33 am |

    Hi Bob

    I’m a bit of a complicates case so not sure how much you can help me, I’m age 45 and off work on longterm sick been paid out of my pension fund. Its been confirmed if I was to move to Oz then I would still receive my payments. I do actually work, with permission from my work place as they can not offer me a postition to suit my mobility issues. I would also still be covered with my private health care, would it be more sensible to try out for my medical before I start the visa process? As I clearly am capable of working do you think the long term sickness would hold me back ?

    • BobinOz March 9, 2014, 9:26 pm |

      I’m not a MARA agent, so I can’t really advise you, but I can see that there are quite a few issues here that may complicate or even prevent you moving to Australia. My advice to you would be to seek help from a MARA registered migration agent before you invest too much time or money on this process.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Tanya February 20, 2014, 11:44 am |

    Hi bob, so does that mean I will have to pay for my 15yr, who will b 16 in October n son who will b 11 next yr(depending how long it will take to get to that stage)? Also was told that children didn’t need to do chest X-rays?? And does the fees more for the adult than the child?


    • BobinOz February 21, 2014, 12:56 pm |

      Hi Tanya

      I think you will find that fees will vary depending where you go, but yes, depending on the kind of visa you are applying for you may have to have chest x-rays done for your children as they are both over 11. That’s under current rules anyway. For some temporary visas though, these x-rays may not be required but immigration will tell you what is needed when you get to that stage.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Artur February 4, 2014, 9:42 am |

    Hi Bob,

    First I’d like to thank you for all info provided on your website. Very useful !!
    Me and my partner + 2 kids are planning to migrate to Austraila within 2 years.
    We have contacted local MARA agent in Kent area and we are goint for the first assesment.
    I have a couple questions about medical examination.
    1) My partner had a few back operations when she was a child but she does not need further treatment sometimes she gets phisio from GP to feel better.
    2) My step-daughter has epilepsy.

    Do you think these medical conditions above would affect our application ?

    Many thanks,


    • BobinOz February 4, 2014, 7:54 pm |

      Hi Artur

      Whilst I can’t speak on behalf of immigration, and obviously every medical is looked at individually, I am sure as I possibly can be that neither of these conditions are going to affect your applications whatsoever.

      Ask your MARA agent when you see him for a second opinion if you wish, but I’m also very confident he will say the same.

      Good luck with your application, Bob

      • Rosanne February 10, 2014, 4:57 am |

        Hi Bob,

        • BobinOz February 10, 2014, 4:04 pm |

          Sounds about right Rosanne, thanks.

  • Mindy Marlow January 24, 2014, 12:27 am |

    Hello Bob,

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience and information about your journey to Australia. My husband is in the process of being hired by a mining co in Perth which will be paying for our Visas ( His, mine and 2 children). I am a diabetic and I have scar tissue in my lungs from having scarlet fever as a baby. Diabetes is an ongoing medical condition which I do need medical supplies etc. to control. I am now worried this will stop me from getting my 457 visa. Any information on how I can find out before he accepts the position officially would be wonderful. Thank you, Mindy

    • BobinOz January 24, 2014, 6:39 pm |

      Hi Mindy

      If you Google “Australian health requirement” you’ll find the government’s fact sheet on this. I can’t tell you whether you will pass your medical, but I am as sure as I can be that neither of the conditions you describe will cause any problems.

      Highly contagious diseases and conditions that are expensive to treat on an ongoing basis are the ones that may be problematic, yours are neither.

      Good luck, Bob

      • Mindy Marlow January 25, 2014, 2:24 am |

        Hello Bob,

        Thank you so much for your quick response 🙂 I can breathe a little easier knowing that these two conditions will not stop the family from living the dream. I absolutely love your blog it has saved me from the terror of not knowing basic information about Australia that is almost impossible to find!

        • BobinOz January 28, 2014, 3:05 pm |

          Thanks Mindy, and good luck.

        • Renuka April 28, 2016, 5:01 pm |

          HI Mindy and Bob,
          Just want to know if there is any update on your visa? has it been granted? Bob.. do you know any cases where people with diabetes (type 1 or 2) has been granted Aus permanent visa? My cousin is type 1 but it is controlled with insulin. She has no issue with kidney, eyes or any other body organs of her. She is going to apply for a permanent visa and we are little worried about it. Please help!!



          • BobinOz April 29, 2016, 7:29 pm |

            Well, the answer to you is exactly the same as the answer I gave to Mindy. Apart from yes, I do know somebody who moved here who had type 2 diabetes and he is now an Australian citizen. Of course, that doesn’t mean your cousin will pass the medical, but it is encouraging. Good luck, Bob

  • vinu December 4, 2013, 12:04 am |

    Dear Bob
    Please advise me.
    My visa has been granted and I have to enter OZ before march 2013 with an undertaking to contact the Health Undertaking Department within 4 weeks of arrival. I have a distance past history of TB and have gone through the complete medication course however, the scars remain there.

    I am currently working and just want to land in Australia to validate my visa. I have following questions:

    1. Is it mandatory to report to Health Undertaking Department on first short visit to Australia or it can be done later on second/third longer visits.

    2. Will I need to stay in Australia until all the tests are done and reports received?
    3. Can I take an appointment on email and plan my travel and accordingly.
    4. If I cannot take an appointment via email then what is the process and time frame of getting appointments

    Thanks in advance.

    • BobinOz December 4, 2013, 1:06 pm |

      Firstly, I assume you mean March 2014? 🙂

      These are questions I can’t answer, you will need to ask them directly with DIBP. This is a matter directly between you and immigration as part of a special condition on your visa.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Rub October 26, 2013, 6:23 pm |

    Hi bob, thank you for supplying the informations about moving to oz. really enjoyed reading it!
    I just want to ask bob can you name some desease that may affect your medical approval? So before applying at least we have the idea. Tnx in advance and more power to u!

    • BobinOz October 27, 2013, 7:14 pm |

      If you Google “Australian health requirement for immigration” you can find more information, but Australia is mainly concerned with highly contagious diseases like tuberculosis and also diseases that are very expensive to treat on an ongoing basis.

      Hope that helps, cheers, Bob

  • shirley Adjei September 23, 2013, 12:27 am |

    Hi Bob, is it possible for my half brother to migrate with me together with my spouse and son

    • BobinOz September 23, 2013, 6:13 pm |

      It’s possible, yes, but I’m sure your half brother would need to apply in his own right. There is an outside chance he could be included with your application, but I’m not 100% sure about that. If he can be included I’m sure it would only be if you can prove that he is fully dependent upon you as if you are his parent or guardian.

      With all of your details my MARA agent could answer this through my Visa Assessment Service.

      Thanks, Bob

  • Ali Wanstall August 24, 2013, 7:25 am |

    Hi. We are at the ‘just having the idea to move to Australia’ stage and I’ve discovered your page, it’s very informative and interesting.
    Can I ask a health related question? My teenage son has a condition that limits his mobility, would a long term ‘disability’ (for want of a better word) affect our application? In general is Australia a ‘disabled’ friendly country?

    • BobinOz August 25, 2013, 9:34 pm |

      No, I don’t believe your sons condition will affect your application, the Australian Government are mainly concerned about highly contagious diseases and also illnesses that are very expensive to treat on an ongoing basis. I doubt either of these two apply to your son’s condition.

      And yes, Australia is “disabled” friendly from what I have seen, even the buses where I live have hydraulic lifts at the front door to enable access for those in wheelchairs.

      Thanks, Bob

  • Jo May 31, 2013, 9:06 pm |

    I’m a nurse in the UK and applying for a PR visa at the moment (well in the loooong process of applying!).
    I’m slightly worried about the eyesight part of the test.
    Due to having Amblyopia (a lazy eye) I have poor vision in my right eye (about 6/60), but my left eye makes up for this (6/6 vision). Obviously this doesn’t affect my nursing as I’ve been working as a qualified nurse for 4 years.
    Still I’m a little nervous they will fail me on eye sight.
    Plus I have to take eye drops 6 times a day (lifelong) for my dry eyes…I’m imagining this will cost quite a lot and might be of concern for immigration.
    Do you think this is likely to cause any problems?

    • BobinOz May 31, 2013, 9:18 pm |

      Hi Jo

      It doesn’t really sound like a medical problem that would prevent you from a successful visa application, I think immigration are more concerned about highly contagious diseases.

      You are right in that they are also concerned about illnesses for which treatment is long term and expensive, but I think you’ll find you will be paying most of the cost of your prescription, it will not be free.

      Perhaps that is something you will need to look into, but I’d be really surprised if your condition affects your application.

      Just my opinion, good luck! Bob

    • sen June 25, 2015, 9:21 pm |

      Hi Jo.

      i have the same problem, have you got your PR ? is there any problem really happened?
      Please let me know.

      • Jithin May 13, 2016, 2:01 pm |

        Hi ,

        I am also into the process of visa application ?
        Did you get through the examination and got your visa ?


  • Leanne March 22, 2013, 6:25 am |

    Thanks…. I got that one wrong then didn’t I… More expense.. Hummmm…….

    • BobinOz March 22, 2013, 8:50 pm |

      Get used to it Leanne, moving to Australia isn’t cheap 🙂

      Worth the money though!

  • Leanne March 21, 2013, 12:34 am |

    Hi.. I’ve not yet had my medical but am I right in thinking that my kids and hubby won’t need medical if they are coming on my sponsored work visa?

    • BobinOz March 21, 2013, 8:15 pm |

      Oh yes they will! Everybody has to have and pass the medical and the chest x-ray. I think children under a certain age are exempt from the chest x-ray, but they will both certainly have to have their medicals.

  • Julie September 11, 2012, 8:00 am |

    Hi Bob,

    Your page has been such a tonic (as they say in Scotland)!!!

    I am so determined to get there for my kiddiewinks future. A couple of years off, but I now have the time, to competently go to college for the next couple of years and get the skill set required to give my monsters a better life!

    High 5’s and kudos to you, hope you are living the dream. This has just inspired me onwards and upwards, and to keep moving forward. (“,) xXx

    Ps. Can you get in with quite a lot of money in the bank? Will still go study, but just wondered if cash factors in.

    • BobinOz September 11, 2012, 8:56 pm |

      Hi Julie, glad you have enjoyed the website and I hope you make it here to Australia on a permanent basis someday soon and I believe it’s a great place to bring up the kiddiwinks.

      Having lots of money in the bank only really helps with the parent visa, you will be asked how much money you intend to bring, but I don’t think it has much bearing on whether you are successful or not.



  • Biene August 5, 2012, 4:11 am |

    Hello Bob,

    Your page is really great! It really helps to see some path in the forrest of all the informations.
    I already got in contact with a MARA and she asked me about any medical condition. The thing is, that I had cancer that was cured 6 years ago. now I am perfectly ok but I am worried if this affects the medicals.
    I wonder if there are similar cases and how they turned out?
    Best wishes from Spain,

    • BobinOz August 6, 2012, 3:30 pm |

      I don’t think that will affect your application, Australia is more concerned about highly infectious diseases or ongoing conditions that are very expensive to treat. Your MARA agent should be able to advise you more on this.

      Good luck!

  • ELLY January 3, 2012, 6:54 pm |

    Please Mr Bob I don’t know how I will be helped to get there, honestly I can’t wait to come to Australia……. I need some TIPS from you sir…..

    • BobinOz January 4, 2012, 2:20 pm |

      Then read this website, its full of tips. Have a good look around, especially pages under my link at the top called Migration Advice.

  • ELLY November 7, 2011, 10:12 pm |

    Man you will kill me with your hilarious post. All the same, you are giving me hope, although I have not started processing, but I shall start soon. You make me love Australia in Advance without being there, but hopefully I shall taste of it, Amen……..

    • BobinOz November 9, 2011, 9:35 pm |

      Thanks Elly

      If I can get in, which I did, there is hope for us all. And I hope you make it soon!



  • Jackie Jones June 20, 2011, 2:47 am |

    Do they just do Chest X-rays or is a brain scan reqiured as well??

    • BobinOz June 20, 2011, 10:13 pm |

      Hi Jackie

      It’s usually just a chest x-ray, but if there is something in your medical history (as there was with mine) that they want to know more about, they can ask for a brain scan or even a full body scan.

    • Dave September 24, 2015, 5:28 am |

      I’m an advanced scaffolder it’s not on the skills list is there any way I can get employment in australia

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