Doctors and medical services

Visiting a Doctor

In Australia, the general practitioner (GP) is usually the first doctor you consult. All GPs are used to seeing patients with many different conditions. All doctors at our University medical centres are GPs. If you need more tests or treatment the doctor may refer you to a specialist either at a public hospital clinic or in private practice. To see a specialist you must have a referral letter from your GP and make an appointment. Payment may be required for private specialists, but treatment at a public hospital is fully covered by your overseas student health cover or OSHC (provided the condition is not 'pre-existing' during the first 12 months you are in Australia). All consultations are strictly confidential.

Medical services - Newcastle

Medical services - Central Coast

Medical services - Sydney

If you are experiencing a medical emergency you should visit a hospital. You should not visit a hospital for general medical inquiries or concerns.

Sick Children

If your child is very unwell do not wait to see the GP. If you live in the Newcastle area it is best to take your seriously ill child as soon as possible to the John Hunter Hospital as this hospital specialises in paediatrics. If you are unsure about your child's health after hours and wish to speak to a nurse you can ring GP Access.


If you are given a prescription for medication by a doctor, you need to take this to a pharmacy (chemist shop). Pharmacies are found in most shopping centres. The medication will be sold to you by the pharmacy.

Your doctor may also sometimes suggest that you buy medicine over the counter without a prescription. This is because it is cheaper for you and for some things a prescription is not needed.

If you are taking medicines when you arrive here, (eg asthma inhalers, acne treatment, birth control pills or antidepressants) we can prescribe more for you. You need to make an appointment with a GP for this. It helps if you bring along your existing medication or prescription and any specialist's letters or results. Medication available here may be slightly different from the one originally prescribed, and sometimes you may need to see a specialist before getting a prescription.