In Australia, a medical certificate is a legal document provided by a healthcare professional. Instant Consult medical certificates include essential details like the medical practitioner's information, the patient's name, medical condition, and the period of leave advised.

At the top right, you’ll find the Instant Consult logo and on the left side is the date of examination. Below that is a note stating the name of the patient and the period of leave covered which lasts for two days or a maximum of 3 days and can start no longer than 24 hours before the date of examination.

On the second line is a statement that the patient is suffering from a medical condition and when they are advised to return to work. Our certificate will only reflect the term “medical condition”, and the specific health issue will not be mentioned.

If appropriate or requested by the patient, our doctors may also include a note on when the symptoms started or any details about the illness. The certificate also includes information on how your employer or any third party can contact Instant Consult if they wish to validate that it is an authentic document. Towards the end, you will find the details of the medical professional who issued the certificate. This includes their name, signature, credentials, and provider number.

What are the requirements for medical certificates?

As per the Australian Medical Association (AMA) and Fair Work guidelines, medical certificates should include the following information:

  • Medical Practice Details: Name and contact information of the health practitioner.
  • Date of Examination: The date when the medical examination took place.
  • Name of the Patient: Full name of the person receiving the certificate.
  • Period of Leave: Specific dates or duration of recommended sick leave or carer’s leave.
  • Doctor’s Details: Name and qualifications of the issuing doctor or nurse practitioner.
  • Signature: The healthcare professional’s signature for authenticity.

Types of Medical Certificates

Medical certificates come in different types to cater to different needs and circumstances. The most common ones are:

  • Sick Leave Certificate: This is issued as a supporting document when claiming sick leave entitlements. It details the patient’s medical condition and the required time off work.
  • Carer’s Certificate: It’s useful when you need to care for an immediate family or household member. It indicates the necessity of your presence for the care of the family member.

What Does a Medical Certificate Look Like for Sick Leave?

Under the Fair Work Act 2009, employees in Australia are entitled to paid personal leave if they can’t go to work because of health issues. This leave can be used when an employee is ill or injured or to care for an immediate family or household member. However, you’ll need to submit a doctor’s certificate to validate your sick leave.

Like any type of medical certificate, the format for sick leave certificates varies widely. However, it still contains all the key elements of a standard medical certificate as provided by the AMA and Fair Work guidelines.

The key part, however, is the recommended duration for the sick leave. It usually details specific start and end dates or the total number of recommended personal leave days. Your medical condition is also described briefly, focusing on the necessity for leave while respecting your privacy. It may also include notes on any follow-up appointments or additional care required.

How to Get a Certificate Online

If you need a medical certificate for work or school, you can get one from Instant Consult in four simple steps:

1. Sign up for an Account: Download the Instant Consult app and sign up or log in to your account.
2. Book a Consultation: Find the “Request a Consult” button on the home screen and click on it. The first available doctor will connect with you in 15 minutes or less.
3. Chat With Your Doctor: Tell your doctor about your symptoms, medical history, and any medications you’re taking. They will use this information to assess your condition and medical needs.
4. Receive Your Medical Certificate: If your doctor deems it appropriate, your medical certificate will be sent to your Instant Consult inbox right after your consultation. You can print it or send it directly to your employer.

Why Choose Instant Consult

Choosing Instant Consult for your medical certificate needs in Australia is one of the best decisions you’ll make. Here’s why:

  • Convenience: Connect with AHPRA registered doctors from anywhere, ideal for when you’re too unwell to leave home.
  • Accessibility: We have doctors available from 6 AM to midnight AEST every day. This means you can get a medical certificate even after hours, on a weekend, or on public holidays.
  • Speed: There’s no need to wait long to get a medical certificate. We’ll connect you with a doctor in less than 15 minutes, and your certificate will be sent to you immediately after.
  • Privacy and Comfort: Reduce the stress of visiting a clinic, especially when feeling unwell. Get a medical certificate from the privacy and comfort of your own home.
  • Digital Delivery: Medical certificates are delivered electronically, making it easier to forward to employers or relevant parties.


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Specialist referrals

If you have a medical condition that warrants seeing a specialist, you can easily talk to a medical professional and get a referral sent to your app’s inbox.


Pathology requests

If you require an STI/STD test or any other kind of bloodwork you can instantly talk to any one of our medical professionals and get a pathology request sent to your app’s inbox.


Radiology requests

For any kind of diagnostic imaging, from cat-scans to MRI’s, you can get an electronic referral sent straight to your app’s inbox.

Frequently Asked Questions

Absolutely! Our doctors are AHPRA-accredited. That means they have the same qualifications as any doctor who provides physical consultations. So, the certificates they issue are as valid as any you would get in an in-person consultation.

The validity depends on the recommended leave period stated in the certificate. It’s effective from the date of issue until the end of the prescribed leave period.

No, your employer cannot force you to disclose sensitive information if you don’t want to. Medical certificates also typically do not describe your condition in detail. It will only show what’s necessary to justify the absence from work.

If you’re unsure or facing pressure to disclose sensitive information, it’s advisable to seek further information or advice from a legal professional or a workers’ rights organisation.

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