From Monday 6th February 2023, we will be introducing an out of pocket fee for some patients for routine consultations. In order to minimise the impact of this change, we will continue to bulk bill (i.e. not charge) GP consultations for:
All children under 16 years of age*
All patients 70 years of age and over*
Patients with a Centrelink Concession Card, Pensioner Concession Card or Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card
Veterans with a Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) white or gold card
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients*
Specific services such as chronic disease care plans, mental health care plans and health assessments
Any patient with a current Covid infection
Mandatory drivers license medicals for private grade licenses (please note commercial drivers medicals incur a fee and don’t have a medicare rebate)
We will be privately charging a minority of our patients who don’t fit the above criteria. If you fall into this category and are under severe financial strain, please speak with your doctor.
Please note that all new patients will be charged the full private fee for their first visit.
*Must hold a valid Medicare card
Frequently asked questions
Why have you changed to a mixed billing payment model?Nuwan Dharmaratne2023-01-07T22:50:11+00:00
The amount Medicare pays for each appointment does not cover the costs of running a medical practice. These costs include staff wages, medical and IT equipment, rent and utilities all of which have increased significantly over the last few years.
The introduction of mixed billing will help keep the practice sustainable in the long run.
How do medical practices like HFGP generate income?Nuwan Dharmaratne2023-01-11T11:16:49+00:00
Like most GPs, most of our doctors work as independent contractors, and they pay the practice a service fee. The practice relies on the service fees from doctors for the majority of its income which is then used to pay staff (e.g. receptionists, nurses), rent, medical equipment, building costs, utilities, computers etc.
Which consultations will continue to be bulk billed?Nuwan Dharmaratne2023-01-09T03:41:22+00:00
No, children over 16 will be charged the usual fee unless they hold a valid concession card.
For children under 16, the federal government pays a ‘bulk billing incentive’ which is an extra payment on top of the standard Medicare fee. This extra funding will allow us to bulk bill children under 16 years of age.
What is a care plan and how do I know if I’m eligible to have one?Nuwan Dharmaratne2023-01-07T22:55:38+00:00
Care plan appointments are for people with chronic and complex conditions. New care plans should be done every 1-2 years and typically take 30-45 minutes and include a nurse and a doctor (and sometimes a clinical pharmacist). They involve setting health goals, and planning tasks (e.g. Pathology tests, specialist and allied health reviews, attending to preventative health checks). These appointments can also be used to organise routine care including referrals and scripts.
Care plan review appointments give an opportunity for you and your doctor to check that your chronic health condition is being managed well and your health goals are being met. They can also be used to organise routine care including scripts and referrals. Care plan reviews can only be done once every 3 months.
Care plans and care plan review appointments will be bulk billed for all patients, if eligible.
What is a mental health care plan and how do I know if I’m eligible?Nuwan Dharmaratne2023-01-11T11:21:28+00:00
A mental health care plan is an agreed plan of action with you and your GP to manage a mental health condition your GP or other mental health professional has diagnosed. If you have a valid mental health care plan, you can access Medicare rebated psychology visits.
These GP visits will be bulk billed and typically take 30-45 minutes. A mental health care plan review is a planned appointment which can be used to access further Medicare rebated psychology visits.
Will I be charged for consultations with a nurse?Nuwan Dharmaratne2023-01-07T23:00:40+00:00
Yes, procedures including skin excisions and iron infusions will incur a private fee for all patients.
The following fees will be introduced from 6th February 2023 for patients ineligible for bulk billing. They also apply to all new patients for their first visit (subsequent consultations will be charged depending on their eligibility for bulk billing).
Type of consultation
Out of pocket cost
Face to face and telehealth standard consultation
Face to face and telehealth long consultation
Face to face and telehealth prolonged consultation
Chronic disease management plans
Mental health care plans
45-49 year old health assessments
Cardiovascular health assessment
The following fees apply to all patients.
Out of pocket cost
Skin lesion excision
Variable (up to $200)
Repair of wound with sutures
Variable (up to $130)
Wound dressings (ongoing)
Type of consultation
Podiatrist initial consultation
Podiatrist subsequent consultation
*Medicare rebatable for patients who have an EPC referral
**Cost for Pension Card or Health Care Card holders
Please note that all appointments, including telehealth, must be rescheduled or cancelled prior to the booked time. Missed appointments will incur a $50 charge, which may need to be paid prior to making another booking.
Hills Family General Practice Shop 10/6 Victoria Avenue Castle Hill NSW 2154