Health and Safety

Personal Safety

While Sydney is generally a safe city, there are a few important things you should remember.

  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash – $50-$100 is enough to cover your daily needs.
  • Never leave your bag unattended at any time. Take extra care with your bag, telephone, purse, etc. in food courts and game centres, where many people assemble.
  • Never carry your bank account PIN (Personal Identification Number) in your purse or wallet with your credit or debit cards.
  • When at the beach, swim only between the yellow and red flags. The surf may be dangerous outside the flags.
  • Ultraviolet (UV) radiation levels in Australia are higher than in other parts of the world, even during winter. Wear sun screen and a hat to protect your skin, even on cloudy days.
  • Travel with a friend on trains or buses after 10.00pm.
  • For your safety, booking a taxi is the best way to get around late at night. Contact Taxis Combined on: 13 2227 (13CABS) or book online at 13CABS.

The NSW Police offer this advice to International Students Personal Safety Tips:

  • Be alert, assertive and confident
  • Try and walk with other people rather than by yourself
  • If travelling by train, try to travel in the carriage marked with a blue light as the train guard is there to ensure the safety of travelers
  • Keep your money and wallet in your front pocket and keep your bag in front of you
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Avoid text messaging and long conversations on your mobile
  • At night stay in well-lit areas, where there are lots of people

Emergency Telephone Numbers

In case of emergency 000 is the phone number for fire, police, and ambulance.
NOTE: Land line telephones use 000 and mobiles phones use 000 and 112.
It is important you are familiar with this number, your name and your address in Sydney in case of emergency.
If you dial 000 the operator will put you through to either ambulance, fire or police. Be prepared to give as much information as possible so they may help you.

Important Telephone Numbers

Emergency – fire, police, ambulance


Police Assistance Number (non-emergency)  131 444
Poisons Information 13 11 26
Lifeline (telephone counselling) 13 11 14
Translation and Interpreter Services 13 14 50
UEC phone number – weekday daytime 02 9283 1088
UEC after hour emergency – within Australia 1800 029 900
UEC after hour emergency – from outside Australia  +61 7 3377 3955


Personal Emergencies

Please be sure to notify the College of your current address, email address and telephone number. If there are any changes to these details please advise us as soon as possible.

Beach Safety

Be careful when swimming in Australian water. Some parts of the coast have powerful currents and tides. Shark attacks are rare, but sometimes do occur. It is safest to swim at beaches that are supervised by Surf Lifeguards, these are beaches that are marked by red and yellow flags.

Check here for beach safety in NSW



In case of emergency 000 is the phone number for

fire, police, and ambulance


Health and Sickness

UEC will not issue medication to students. If you are unwell, you should visit a chemist or a doctor for advice. First Aid Officers are available at the college.

National Health Services Directory is an online search engine whereby you can search the directory to find health services near you. The website provides information about General Practice Doctors, pharmacies, hospitals and emergency departments.

Overseas Student Health Cover (OHSC)

As an international student, it is a condition of your student visa that you have appropriate Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for the entire duration of your stay in Australia. OSHC gives you access to hospital and medical services and assists you in meeting those costs. This is usually arranged when you organise your visa.

As holding OSHC is a visa requirement, take care to maintain your cover at all times and do not fall behind in payments. If you do fall behind you will be able to continue your cover but you may not be able to claim for services, you received while you were in arrears.

UEC can help you to arrange your OSHC. If you require assistance, contact student services.

For more information on OSHC, click on the links below:

Allianz – OSHC provider for UEC students


Mental Health

We understand that being away from your family and friends while studying in the unfamilliar environment may bring you negative feelings such as lonliness, anxiety and sadness. It is natural to experience those feelings and our student service staff are always happy to help you. Please don’t be afraid to ask for help at UEC reception.

You can also access to the following support services:

Eastside Counselling – counselling available in English and Japanese

Beyond Blue

Reach Out

Depression Services