Backpackers have a higher risk of chlamydia and other sexually transmitted infections [STIs]. Chlamydia can have serious effects for men and women – and there are often no signs or symptoms. Find out more about chlamydia
If you have been travelling in Asia and Africa which are high risk for HIV and you have had unprotected sex then getting a test for all STIs is advised.
Fortunately, getting tested is easy. You can even get a free online chlamydia test
There are many places backpackers can go to get tested. Most are free, but you can also visit a General Practitioner (GP) for testing and treatment. More information on testing and treatment
If you get tested, Medicare and the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement [RHCA] may cover you.
Medicare and the RHCA is an agreement between the Australian government and the governments of:
It entitles you to limited subsidised health services, for treatment that is medically necessary, while in Australia.
If your country is not on this list, you are not eligible under the RHCA.
For more information on the RHCA visit www.medicareaustralia.gov.au or call 132 011.
Travel insurance generally covers all medical, hospital, and ambulance expenses incurred as a result of illness, injury, or death that you suffer while overseas.
You can make a claim if you have symptoms of an STI. However STI testing where there are no symptoms is not covered. If symptoms existed before departure, it is considered a pre-existing condition and will not be covered.
If you haven’t got insurance, or your insurance does not cover you, you can still get tested. You can get free testing for STIs, HIV, and hepatitis B at public hospitals. Government sexual health clinics offer free testing and treatment. Non government clinics and GP’s may charge a fee for testing and there will be the usual pharmacy cost for the treatment medications. See list of sexual health clinics in WA