Eligibility rules

The DHBs provide funding for laboratory testing services. Those who are not eligible will be required to pay at the time of sample collection.

As the referring medical practitioner, you are responsible for confirming your patient can have free tests.




New Zealand citizens and residents

New Zealand citizens (including those living in the Cook Island,
Niue or Tokelau) and residents




Any person applying for

Testing for immigration/emigration or visa purposes.


Referrals from government agencies

Such as WINZ, CYPS or similar 


Wellness for a trial or study 

Screening programmes

Tests that are requested on a  well person devoid of symptoms and with no identifying risk factors e.g. blood group, wellness testing. Tests that are for, or part of a research project, a study or trial. Screening campaigns or ongoing programmes - ministry, DHB, or other funding (e.g. cervical, breast, bowel screening - or more targeted screening for high risk groups such as throat swabs for strep throats/rheumatic fever)



Screening tests prior to travel
e.g. Hepatitis immunity, rabies antibodies


Tests for employment,
pre-employment, education and
work experience

Screening tests for education or work experience e.g. Nursing medical
Health and safety testing e.g. lead levels, drug testing


Self referred or Referrals from health practitioners who are not approved referrers

For example Naturopaths, Dentists, Podiatrists, Dietricians and similar.

Limited range of funded tests for Midwives, Smear taker, Nurse practitioner.


People obtaining a medical
certificate, insurance
or superannuation policy

Where a certificate is required e.g. pilot or diver’s medical licence and
insurance testing


Pregnant women  An otherwise ineligible pregnant partner of an eligible person is eligible for maternity-related services, on the basis that the child is likely to be born eligible.  Should the partnership end during the pregnancy, but the child be born a NZ citizen, the maternity-related services continue to be finded. YES



Work visa holders

NB: If their visa was issued before December 2010, it will be called a work permit.
Holds a current work visa which together with the time the person has already been in NZ lawfully, allows for a continuous stay of at least 2 years.


Refugees and applicant

With proof of refugee/applicant status


Foreign Language Teaching Assistants Funded by Ministry of Education. Partners and children of foreign language teaching assistants are NOT ELIGIBLE.  YES
Visitor and Student permit holder Visitor and student permit holders who had been eligible since October 2003 are no longer eligible under the 2011 Eligibility Direction.  They are no longer entitled to be enrolled unelss they have become eligible under another criterion.  NO

Australian citizens

Eligible for the full range of publicly funded health and disability services IF they are able to demostrate they have or intend to spend at least two consecutive years in New Zealand. 


Australian residents Testing required for medical conditions requiring prompt attention. YES

United Kingdom citizens
ordinarily resident in UK

Testing required for medical conditions requiring prompt attention


Foreign Diplomats

Foreign diplomats and their family


All persons receiving
compulsory health services including prison inmates

Services received under any of:

Compulsory treatment under TB Act 1948, Health Act 1956,

- the Mental Health (Compulsory Assessment and Treatment) Act 1992

- the Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Act 1966

- the Criminal Prodecure (Mentally Impraied Persons) Act 2003

are funded regardless of a person's citizenship or immigration status


Funded Students

Funded by NZAID ODA and includes partners and children

Commonwealth Scholarship Holder does not include partners and children


Student permit holders

Holds a current student permit holders who had been eligible since October 2003 are no longer eligible under the 2011 Eligibiligy Direction


For more information on test funding eligibility, please visit http://www.moh.govt.nz/eligibility