Due to Federal government policies such as the Medicare freeze, which was introduced in 2013, the Medicare rebate value has fallen far short of inflation for the past 10 years.
As an example, the current Medicare rebate of $41.40 for a standard consultation lasting less than 20 minutes equates to less than 50% of the Australian Medical Association (AMA) recommended fee of $86, which is based on the approximate costs to the practice of providing the service. In common with everyone else, practice costs are rising also, and as we are a private business, this greater than 50% discount that we have provided to many patients in the past is unfortunately no longer sustainable. In the light of this, the General Practitioners have sadly realised that to be able to maintain the high quality level of healthcare their patients currently receive, they can no longer continue the level of bulk billing that has been provided in the past, and many services that were previously exclusively bulk billed will in future incur a private fee.
Mingara Medical sets a guide to allow patients of the General Practitioner to be prepared for out of pocket expenses. Some of the consulting doctors offer limited bulk billing for some children & DVA patients.
Children, Aged Pensioner & Health Care Card holders may be offered a reduced rate. Please familiarise yourself with the new billing policy as you may no longer be entitled to bulk billing regardless of whether you have been bulk billed in the past. Each doctor’s billing policy can be found on their own websites.
The majority of medical services will have an out-of-pocket cost of between $20 – $60. Childhood immunisations will continue to be bulk billed.
Any concerns or feedback regarding these changes should be discussed directly with your doctor. Our administration team are there to facilitate but are not able to influence billing protocol.
We hope you can appreciate the reasoning behind this decision and can understand why it has become necessary, in order to keep the consulting doctors able to operate their individual businesses.