As of 1 November, a raft of changes to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) have been implemented. Among the changes, optometrists, and other allied health professionals, can now receive a Medicare benefit for participating in case conferences to manage the care of certain patients.
The change aims to support the complex health needs of young children diagnosed with autism and those living with chronic diseases.
New Medicare items will encourage eligible health providers to work together more closely to support the health of vulnerable Australians
Announcing the new MBS items, Heath Minister Greg Hunt said they will allow allied health professionals to be paid to attend multidisciplinary conferences held by their patient’s regular general practitioner, in order to discuss diagnosis, care and treatment plans.
“New Medicare items will encourage eligible health providers to work together more closely to support the health of vulnerable Australians,” said Mr Hunt.
“These additional items will improve care coordination and deliver better outcomes to patients with complex needs who have multiple care providers.”
Until now, such multidisciplinary case conferences were not eligible for reimbursement under Medicare for allied health workers. The new items (10995, 10957, 10959, 82001, 82002 and 82003) have been introduced through the Heath Insurance Legislation Amendment (Section 3C General Medical Services – Allied Heath Case Conference) Determination 2021.