Here are some important facts regarding MedPlaza, Medicare and the health system.
Are my medical records private and confidential?
Your medical record is a confidential document. It is the policy of this practice to maintain security of personal health information at all times and to ensure that this information is only available to authorised members of staff. We abide by the ten National Privacy Principles available at www.privacy.gov.au/health
We take your privacy very seriously. It is for this reason that:
- we will not give out patient details or medical information over the phone
- we will not disclose medical information to your partner or other family member unless specifically agreed
- we will not disclose medical information of a child aged 14 or over to a parent unless specifically agreed
Please note that according to legislation and Medicare rules a child aged 14 or over may attend a GP alone and consent to normal medical treatment without the parents knowledge or consent.
What are our GP fees?
From 15 July 2019, for all NEW patients to the practice we charge a private fee for GP consultations with the exception of children, students and DVA card holders. A Medicare rebate is available for those who are eligible.
We continue to Bulk Bill EXISTING patients with a valid Medicare or DVA card for the majority of general practice services including consultations Monday to Friday. All GP consultations on Saturdays incur a fee to be paid at the time of the consultation with the exception of children up to and including 15 years of age (a Medicare or DVA rebate may be available for valid cardholders).
Drs Steiner and Amy Nguyen charge a private fee, Monday to Friday, for consultations but Bulk Bill patients with a valid concession card, children and students as well as for consultations for test result follow up. All Saturday consultations incur a private fee with the exception of children up to and including age 15, and students.
Some GP services will incur a private fee in all cases. These include: Iron infusions, IUD insertions, Commercial Driver's licence medicals, Employment medicals, and Aviation medicals
Please note that fees for some GP consultations may be covered by insurance, eg. Workplace or motor vehicle injury consultations. In these cases, the patient will be charged the appropriate fees until a claim number has been obtained by the patient.
If you are experiencing financial hardship please discuss this with your GP.
What are our fees for other practitioners?
Dr Tony Liu, our visiting specialist paediatrician, charges a private fee to be paid at the time of the consultation and a Medicare rebate is available if eligible.
All Allied Health Services which include psychology, podiatry, dietitian, remedial massage and acupuncture, incur a private fee to be paid at the time of the service. Some services may be eligible for a Medicare or DVA rebates for valid cardholders. For some services, patients with private health insurance may receive a rebate (please check with your insurer). Please note that MedPlaza cannot enquire about your cover or dispute your received rebate amount. We use HICAPS to submit these claims to private insurance.
How does Bulk Billing work?
Bulk Billings means that GPs accept payment for their services at Medicare rates. For the convenience of patients, Medplaza has an arrangement with Medicare whereby we send all the service billings to them on patients behalf. This is why we ask you to sign after your consultation. Not all services we offer are covered by Medicare.
MedPlaza is not a public clinic even though we choose to Bulk Bill most GP consultations. Nearly all GP clinics in Australia are private businesses and are not part of the public health system.
How do referrals work?
Referrals from your GP to a specialist or allied health practitioner allow you to claim a rebate from Medicare. A referral is a legal document, it cannot be backdated or issued without a consultation with a GP. Your GP determines if a referral is warranted. We ask all our patients not to misplace their referrals or present for their specialist appointment without one. Reissuing of lost referrals incurs a fee. You may see a specialist without a GP referral but it will be at full fee without a Medicare rebate.
Can I get a referral without seeing the doctor?
All new referrals (for a new specialist or new issue) require an appointment with a doctor without exceptions.
For repeat referrals (previously referred to specialist for ongoing management), a referral can be requested by phone. There is a non-Medicare rebatable fee of $30 for a same day pickup or $20 for pickup next day. To avoid a fee you may advise reception of your request and arrange a time when the doctor may issue you a referral between other appointments (short wait may be required). If you are already at a specialist appointment and have forgotten/misplaced your referral or require a repeat referral we can arrange faxing the referral at a fee of $30.
How can I follow up my results?
As a general rule we request all patients make an appointment with their doctor to discuss investigation results. Due to privacy reasons receptionists and nurses cannot give results over the phone. The doctors have a system in place where most results are received and reviewed electronically. In case of urgent results requiring prompt follow up you may be contacted by our practice nurse or the GP directly.
Why do I need to make an appointment?
Appointments minimise waiting time and let your GP prepare for your consultation. Of course emergencies happen and as a result your GP may be running late. If you cannot wait we will offer you an alternate time or another GP on the day. A standard appointment is 12 minutes. If you need to discuss more issues please consider booking a long appointment. In particular, long appointments are required for new Mental Health care plans (for psychology referrals) and new Medical care plans (for referrals to Allied Health, eg. physiotherapy referrals.
How can I make an appointment?
Appointments can be booked in a variety of convenient ways: Online from our website, Online via HealthEngine, and by Phone 8765 0777.
MedPlaza has partnered with HealthEngine to provide reminders via SMS for your appointments. Please advise reception if you do not wish to receive reminders.
Can I get a repeat prescription without seeing the doctor?
Yes, but only for previously prescribed regular medications excluding chronic pain drugs. The prescription can be requested by phone or online via HealthEngine. There is a non-Medicare rebatable fee of $30 for a same day pickup or $20 for pickup next day. To avoid a fee you may advise reception of your request and arrange a time when the doctor may issue you a prescription between other appointments (short wait may be required).
Why am I receiving reminders?
Our practice is committed to preventive care. Your doctor will seek your permission to be included on our reminder system. We may issue you with a reminder notice (SMS or post) from time to time offering you preventive health services appropriate to your care. If you do not wish to be part of this system please let your doctor or reception know.
Can I have a referral for 5 visits to a physiotherapist, chiropractor, podiatrist, etc, on Medicare?
Medicare administers a program called Care Planning which allows for up to 5 Medicare rebatable visits to an Allied Health professional in a calendar year (Jan to Dec). This is only available to patients with a chronic or terminal medical condition who have complex care needs (and see a minimum of 3 health providers for their management). Please discuss with your doctor whether you may qualify for a Care Plan and associated referral.
Can I have a referral for a psychologist on Medicare?
Medicare administers a program called Better Access to Mental Health which allows for up to 10 Medicare rebatable visits to a psychologist in a calendar year (Jan to Dec). This is only available to patients with an eligible Mental Health condition such as depression, anxiety. Generally, life or marital counselling is not eligible unless accompanied by a diagnosis of a mental health disorder. Please discuss with your doctor whether you may qualify for a Mental Health Care Plan and associated referral.
What is accreditation?
Our clinic is fully accredited. This means that the medical services we provide meet the national standards required by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP). This is a comprehensive and stringent process which ensures standards of excellence in all aspects of medical care.
Do our GPs have relevant qualifications?
All our GPs are Australian trained and are fellows of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) ensuring the highest standard of care.
Is MedPlaza an accredited Travel Clinic?
We are a NSW Health accredited Yellow Fever vaccination clinic. We provide travel medicine advice and stock a range of travel vaccinations.
Do we cater for physically disabled patients?
We are a fully wheelchair accessible clinic. There are 2 dedicated disabled parking spots in front of the clinic building. There are no steps when accessing the building. If you require mobility assistance please contact our receptionists.
What if I need an interpreter?
The use of interpresting services can be arranged if required. Please advise us in advance preferably at the time of making an appointment. Some of our doctors can also consult in other languages such as: Polish, Portuguese, and Cantonese.
How do I submit a suggestion or complaint?
If you have a suggestion or complaint we would like to hear about it. Please feel free to talk to your doctor or receptionist. You may prefer to write to us or use our suggestion box. We take your concerns, suggestions and complaints seriously. If you feel you have an issue you would like to discuss outside the practice you may contact the Health Care Complaints Commission on 9219 7444.
What is our smoking policy?
The practice has a strict non-smoking policy. Smoking is not allowed within the practice or in the immediate vicinity. Your adherence to this policy would be appreciated.
What are my patient obligations?
In order to provide you with the best care possible it is essential that patients are honest and provide full dislosure of their conditions and circumstances. It is requested that patients maintain respect towards all practitioners and staff of MedPlaza. We reserve the right to refuse treatment to any person that is abusive, inappropriate or threatening to staff.