TeleHealth No Longer Just a Trend

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Telehealth Services are quickly opening the way to support GPs practice in different locations. We know how much shock we receive whenever there is a change introduced affecting the areas GPs can practice who are still on moratorium, temporary visas or outside of their Fellowship. Sometimes it feels there is no way a GP or clinic can strategically plan their future.Well as of 1 November 2019, new Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) items will be introduced to allow GPs to provide services by videoconference to patients living in rural and remote areas.

Although there is no restriction on the geographic location of the practitioner providing the new telehealth service, there are a few guidelines: To be eligible for the new telehealth service:

  1. A patient must be living in a MMM 6 or 7 area;
  2. A patient must have received three face-to-face professional attendances in the preceding twelve months from the practitioner who will provide the telehealth service;
  3. At the time of the consultation, be at least 15 kilometres by road from the practitioner.
  4. The service must have both an audio and a video component. A Medicare benefit will not be paid for a service provided by telephone only (that is, an audio connection, but with no video).

So it’s time to get comfortable with being in front of a camera! It takes practice and repetition to get comfortable, plus knowing a few handy technological tips helps. After a short time, you get really good at using and understanding the technology. If you need any tips as a Practitioner or for your clinic, I am happy to chat. Looks like a Telehealth Revolution is about to explode – so be sure to be ahead of the game! Michelle Dowd 0422 748 356


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Date published: 08/18/2019