Initial consultation: A higher fee is charged when you see the doctor for the first time as extra time is allocated for this visit.
Subsequent consultation: A lower fee is charged when you see the doctor again as this is because less time is usually needed once the doctor has become familiar with your condition.
Post-operative/Post Natal Visit: During the post-operative/post natal period, the cost of visiting the doctor is included in the operation/delivery fee. The period this applies to varies according to the surgery, and is determined by the Medicare Benefits Schedule. For major surgery/delivery, the period is usually six weeks, but varies considerably.
Extra costs: If a procedure is performed at the time of the consultation, you will be charged extra for this. Procedures include Implanon insertion and/or removal, IUCD insertion and/or removal, implants, colposcopy and biopsy etc.
How will I be charged and how should I pay?
You will be issued with an invoice at the end of the consultation, and will be required to pay at the time of the visit. You may pay with cash, cheque, EFTPOS or credit card (We accept all major credit cards). You will need to pay the whole cost of the consultation, and then take the invoice to Medicare for a rebate. Concessions are not routinely offered for health care cardholders.
What should I bring?
You will need a referral letter from your doctor. This is very important, as it tells the doctor what you have been sent for, and may give extra important information such as your illnesses or medications. Without a referral letter you will not be able to claim a Medicare rebate.
Informed Financial Consent: The practice will provide you with an estimate of the proposed fee for any in-hospital procedure. In most cases it will be accurate but it may vary if something different or extra needs to be done at the time of surgery. The anaesthetist can also give you an estimate if you contact them and give them the item number or numbers. The Practice can inform you about the cost of implants. Should you have no private health fund cover, the hospital will be able to provide estimates of bed costs and associated fees. These fees are independent of your doctor and Anaesthetist fees.
What out-of-Pocket expenses should I expect?
Private health insurance: There will be a gap between the fees that your Doctor, Assistant and Anaesthetist charge and the Medicare rebate. Some of this difference is covered by your private health insurance. Your insurance will cover the hospital bed, theatre fees, and may also cover some or all of the other costs.
No private health insurance: Medicare will pay some of the fees that your Doctor, Assistant and Anaesthetist charge, but there will be a gap to pay. You will have to pay the full cost of the hospital bed, theatre fee, and other costs.
What is the ‘Gap’?
The gap is the difference between what the doctor charges and the Medicare rebate.