In our recent practice patient survey, we received feedback that more information on fees is desired. This page has been revamped to reflect those wishes.
Gladstone Street Medical Clinic is a private-billing practice. We, like many other private practices, believe that bulk billing all our patients will require us to compromise the level of care that we can offer. Unfortunately, the amount set by the Government for a consultation is insufficient to cover the costs of providing a high quality medical service. staff and a modern, well-equipped facility. Unfortunately, the reality today is that Medicare bulk-billing rebates no longer cover the cost of providing high quality care.
The costs associated with running a practice increase every year (staff wages, practice rent, cost of specialised equipment, resources and computers, electricity, water, insurances, accreditation and so on), but the Medicare return to practices has changed very little over the last 10 years and, in fact, some rebates have been reduced or cut altogether, making it very difficult to sustain a quality practice on bulk-bill fees alone. For the reasons above, we are a Private Billing practice, although there are many services offered by our GPs and nurses which are bulk-billed (see "Bulk-Billed Services" below).
Payment is expected at the time of consultation. If an account is taken for later payment the relevant fee will be increased by a $10 handling charge.
A standard consultation fee is $75. The Medicare rebate is $37.05. Longer appointments will incur additional fees. These will, however, incur the same out of pocket "gap payment" as a standard consultation.
A reduced fee of $65 is available to health care card holders. The Medicare rebate is $37.05. Longer appointments will incur additional fees. These will, however, incur the same out of pocket "gap payment" as a standard consultation.
Bulk Billing is available to children aged under 16 as well as aged pension and disability support pension card holders. Services which are generally bulk-billed include:
- Childhood immunisations
- Chronic disease management plans
- Annual Senior Health assessments (75 years and over)
- Home Medication Management reviews
- Annual Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Checks for all age groups
- 45-49 year-old health checks for patients at-risk of chronic disease
Bulk Billing is also available, at the doctor’s discretion, to any patients who are experiencing a time of significant financial difficulty. Please discuss this with your doctor at the time of your consultation, and not with our reception staff at the conclusion of your visit. Please be advised that each doctor is responsible for charging his/her own fees and that just because one doctor bulk bills you, another doctor may not.
Your doctor will discuss fees for procedures with you. Services that will attract a $50.00 Procedure Fee include:
- Ear Syringing
- Punch Biopsy
- Mirena insertion
- Implanon insertion / removal
- Laceration repair
- Abscess Drainage
- Plasters casts
- Any other procedure that requires specialised equipment or nursing care
Please note, due to Medicare legislation regarding the charging of private fees, patients who are normally bulk billed will be charged the rebate amount for the consultation rather than being bulk billed at the time of billing the Procedure Fee. Medicare will refund the rebate amount directly to the patient so there will not be an out of pocket expense for the consultation fee. For more information on why this fee is charged in this manner, please read Bulk Billing and Dressing/Additional Fees Explained.
A Dressing Fee will be charged in addition to a consultation fee.
A basic dressing will cost $15 per consult, and a complex dressing will cost $30 per consult.
Patients are welcome to purchase appropriate dressings directly from their pharmacy of choice if they prefer to do so.
Please note, due to Medicare legislation regarding the charging of private fees, patients who are normally bulk billed will be charged the rebate amount for the consultation rather than being bulk billed at the time of billing the Dressing Fee. Medicare will refund the rebate amount directly to the patient so there will not be an out of pocket expense for the consultation fee. For more information on why this fee is charged in this manner, please read Bulk Billing and Dressing/Additional Fees Explained.
Removal of Sutures
Removal of sutures for procedures not done at our clinic will incur a non-rebateable fee of $30.00 in addition to a consultation fee being charged.
Your Medicare Refund
All face-to-face consultations attract a Medicare rebate, meaning that you will receive a refund from Medicare for part of your up-front payment, significantly reducing your out-of-pocket cost. We can submit your Medicare rebate claim at the time of payment. Your rebate will be directly deposited into the bank account you have nominated with Medicare. From time to time, there are difficulties with the Medicare rebate being processed. Please contact us if this occurs and we will assist in any way we can. Most often in this case, you will be required to present to Medicare office to resolve the matter.
Medicare will only provide a rebate for services performed by your GP or Nurse as part of a face-to-face consultation. A non-rebatable private fee applies for any services you request your clinician to perform without your attendance at a consultation (such as providing a script, referral or completing a form). Consultations under Workcover and TAC will be charged privately and there is no rebate from Medicare for these services.
Document Reprinting Fees
Your referral letters, prescriptions, pathology request forms, etc. are important documents. The reprinting of documents such as lost referral letters, lost scripts, and copies of specialist letters, misplaced pathology or radiology requests will incur a $10.00 administration fee (not Medicare refundable). Please be advised that reprints may take up to 3 days to complete.
Please keep your original documents as given to you by the doctor.
Please remember to take your documents to the specialist, pathology collection centre or imaging centre.
If you are committed to attending the specialist as indicated on your referral letter, then reception may be able to fax this document through to the specialist’s rooms. Please ask. Due to security concerns, letters will not be emailed.
Why can’t we just print off a copy of the documents?
Letters are stored within our clinical software unsigned.
Pathology requests and prescriptions are printed on proprietary forms. Only a GP can print on these forms.
Reprints take time. Interrupting a doctor’s session for “urgent” reprints means delays for patients.
Your referring doctor may not be in for several days or on leave. If a reprint is urgently required, then another doctor has to review your file, determine for him/herself the appropriateness of the referral and then becomes responsible for the referral or test and follow up once printed and signed.
If you have extenuating circumstances please discuss these with your treating medical practitioner.