COVID and Telehealth Update - 17/7/20

We now offer Telehealth appointments to all of our patients. We will book a time with your doctor and they will call you for a phone consult. If you meet Medicare’s criteria for being bulk-billed for a phone consult, there will be no out of pocket cost to you. For our private patients that do not meet Medicare’s criteria for being bulk-billed, there may be private fees associated with these consults. For more information about our fees and Medicare’s criteria for being bulk-billed, please visit our website and click on our Fees tab.

As of the 20th of July, if you have not been seen by a GP at one of our practices in the last 12 months, Medicare will no longer provide a rebate for GP Telehealth services. If you pass our screening, you will be required to attend our practices in person for your consult. Alternatively, you may have a Telehealth consult if you choose to, but you will be required to pay for the consult in full, and you will not receive a rebate from Medicare. A reminder that this is only relevant for patients that have not been seen by a GP at one of our practices in the last 12 months.

At this time, where it is appropriate to do so, we will continue to look after our patients via Telehealth. This includes the follow-up of test results. To receive your test results, please call us and our reception team will make a time for your doctor to call you to discuss your results further.

For patients wanting to attend our practices for face-to-face consults, you will be screened by our reception staff at the time of your booking to ensure that it will be acceptable for you to attend in person.

We continue to take your health and the health of all our patients seriously. We have implemented a number of changes at our practices to ensure we do all that we can to reduce the spread of diseases at our practices.

  • When you arrive at our practices, we encourage you to please use our hand sanitiser that is provided at our entrances.
  • We have a “Red Zone” set up at our reception counters that are marked out in red tape on the floor – when you arrive at our practices, we ask you to please not enter the Red Zone. When you approach the counter after your consult, we ask you to please stand on a yellow cross behind our screens at our reception counters.
  • In order to maintain social distancing, we have limited the number of chairs in our waiting rooms. To help us keep our waiting rooms safe:          
    • We ask you to please not come into our practices more than 5 minutes earlier than your appointment time. If you do arrive significantly early, or our waiting room is at capacity, we will ask you to please return to your car.
    • We have placed chairs outside for patients who would prefer to wait outside. Alternatively, if you would prefer to wait in your car for your doctor, we will be more than happy to facilitate this for you, you will just need to give us a call when you arrive in the carpark.
    • We are asking our patients where possible to please attend their appointments by themselves to keep the number of patients in our waiting rooms down.
  • We are asking all patients to pay via card where possible. We will not be processing rebates via our Easy Claim function, but instead Medicare will deposit the rebate back into your bank account.  For patients that would like to pay with cash, at this time we ask that you have the correct amount for us to limit cash handling.
  • You can book a telehealth appointment with your doctor using our online bookings on our website or our App. Instructions about Telehealth appointment bookings can be found on our website.

We have also changed some of our procedures, including how we manage potentially infectious patients. If you have:

  • Cold or flu-like symptoms including a fever, cough, fatigue, runny nose, sore throat and shortness of breath we ask you to please not enter our practices.
  • Travelled overseas or interstate in the past 14 days, we ask you to please not enter our practices.
  • Been in contact with a confirmed or suspected case of Coronavirus, we ask you to please not enter our practices.

You will receive a phone consult with your doctor or another doctor at our practice to determine the appropriate actions to be taken.

For more information about Coronavirus, please click on the link below which will take you to Australia’s current Coronavirus (COVID-19) health alert:

https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert

We thank you for your assistance in trying to keep you, all of our patients and our team safe during this time.