Reciprocal health care agreements and Australian health policy Academic Article uri icon


  • Shortly after the introduction of Medicare, following the return of the Australian Labor Party to government in 1983, the Federal Cabinet decided to extend basic health care coverage to the international level by seeking reciprocal health care agreements with other countries. This policy has resulted in the gradual establishment of a series of treaties providing Australian travellers with coverage in a number of countries and the process is continuing. This article examines the origins and nature of Australian government policy in this area, chronicles the development of treaty links and discusses some of the international and domestic policy issues associated with reciprocal health care agreements.

publication date

  • December 1, 1991