Melbourne is renowned for its healthy and safe living environments.
Safe Cities Index 2017 ranks Melbourne in the top 5 safest cities worldwide. Melbourne scored highly across a number of indicators in the four main assessment areas of digital security, health security, infrastructure safety and personal safety.
Victoria’s stable political system, low crime rates, welcoming communities and harmonious multicultural community ensure that students can learn effectively and enjoy their study experience in safety.
Our homestay families are carefully selected and rigorously monitored by schools to ensure that students are provided with the best care and support in friendly, safe and secure environments.
Our schools are safe and secure places to learn. Each school has a dedicated staff member who is responsible for the wellbeing of each international student. Students can access their International Student Coordinator, Assistant Principal or Principal 24 hours a day.
Police assistance is also available 24 hours a day and is easy to access. Students travelling on public transport benefit from the security offered by Protective Services Officers who are based at train stations across Melbourne’s suburbs to ensure that train passengers are kept safe, including after dark.
Students both at school and university levels also benefit from the Study Melbourne Student Centre that provides friendly advice about all sorts of issues and support in emergency situations.
Emergencies or urgent help
What you should do in an emergency
For all emergencies, life-threatening situations or serious injuries:
Dial: 112 (from mobile, even if you have no signal or network connection)
Dial: 106 (from TDD text phones. Do not text or SMS the number – you must dial the number)
What happens when you dial 000
The 000 operator will ask if you need police, fire or ambulance. You must say which of these services you need.
You can also ask for an interpreter. The operator will ask you when language you need. Tell them the name of your language in English.
You will then be connected to either the police, fire or ambulance service.
The operator will ask you a range of questions in order to help you. For example, what your situation is, your phone number and your location.
You will need to stay calm to tell the operator where you are so the services can come and help you. Make sure you give them the exact address or location. If you are close to a street corner, make sure you tell the operator the streets at the closest intersection if you know them.
Do not hang up the phone until you the operator tells you to do so. In most instances, the operator will stay on the line to give you instructions and help you.
Hospital emergency departments
To go to a hospital emergency department, you need to either:
- Call 000 in an emergency to be taken in an ambulance
- Call you International Student Coordinator or homestay parent so that they can take you. This is because not all hospitals have an emergency department. Your International Student Coordinator or homestay parent will be able to take you to the right hospital.
Staff at emergency departments are trained and will speak with you to assess your situation. You may be required to wait until other patients are seen first.
Remember to take your Overseas Student Healthcare Cover (OSHC) card with you.
Other emergency services
Poisons information centre
Dial: 13 11 26
The poisons information centre help line is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Call the helpline if you or someone near you has been poisoned, has overdosed, has made a mistake with medicines. You should also call the helpline for help if someone has been bitten or stung by marine animals (such as jellyfish), snakes, spiders or insects (such as bees or wasps).
Mental health emergencies
Dial: 131 114
Lifeline mental health phone help line is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If you or someone you know needs mental health support, lifeline will provide you with someone who will listen and give you help at any time.
Dial: 9341 1000
If you have a dental emergency, call the
Royal Dental Hospital in Carlton. The dental hospital is open until 9.15pm each night. You can also ask the hospital to refer you to a clinic closer to where you live.
Call your International Student Coordinator or homestay parent
Your International Student Coordinator is available 24 hours, 7 days a week to help you when you need them. Your International Student Coordinator can help you if you have homestay issues, health or medical concerns, you feel unhappy or unsafe. It is their job to help you so don’t feel that you can’t ask for their help.
It’s important to contact your International Student Coordinator even if you are lost or you have caught the wrong bus. This way we can help get you get home safely.
You can also contact your homestay parents and ask for their help.
Nurse-on-Call phone service
Dial: 1300 606 024
Nurse-On-Call puts you directly in touch with a registered nurse for caring, professional health advice around the clock. You can contact Nurse-on-Call if:
- you or a friend or family member is feeling unwell
- you are not sure if you should seek medical help
- you’re away from home or situated a long way from medical help
- you simply want advice or information about health services in your area.
Sometimes if you call Nurse-on-Call, the nurse may tell you to go to your nearest hospital emergency department.
Your local doctor or GP
Dial: Your local doctor
You can also contact your local doctor or General Practitioner (GP). If your doctor is closed, they will most likely have the number of an after hour medical clinic on their phone answering service.
Your OSHC healthcare cover will also have a list of approved after-hours doctors who can visit you at home.
Your local pharmacy
Dial: Your local pharmacy
You can also contact your local pharmacy or chemist. Some pharmacies are open 24 hours a day and most are open until about 7pm or 9pm at night. The pharmacist will be able to help you with many health concerns.