What is Bulk Billing Doctors?

What is Bulk Billing Doctors?

TayahAlfaro January 8, 2023

Many people in Rockhampton have, at some point in their lives taken advantage of bulk billing Doctors. For instance, a visit to the optometrist for an eye test becomes part of bulk billing doctors.

What is Bulk Billing Doctors?

You don’t need to pay for a medical visit when you’re with bulk-billing doctors. The free medical visit is because the full payment is directly billed to the Australian government as included in the MBS or Medicare Benefits Schedule.

A “patient account” is charged to you when you are not bulk-billed. This scenario is when Medicare allows you to claim back a portion of the MBS. A “gap payment” or “out of pocket” is the term used for a fee that cannot be claimed with Medicare.

Often, people asked to be bulk billed because they understand it’s the only way not to pay anything. However, bulk billing doctors have to decide on patients to bulk bill.

Eligibility for bulk billing

Any Australian citizen is eligible for bulk billing as long as they hold a valid Medicare card. However, bulk billing is only available if your specialist or doctor agrees to bulk billing. Patients that cannot afford doctor’s consultations but need access to high-quality healthcare can be considered for bulk billing.

Some of the things that can make bulk billing available for people holding valid Medicare cards include:

  • Children below 16 years
  • NDIS clients
  • Holders of Health Care Card
  • Refugees
  • Holds a student card and is below 25 years old
  • DVA Card Holders
  • Pension Card Holders

An expired Medicare card automatically rejects you from availing of bulk billing.

Doctors that are likely to offer bulk billing

Bulk billing is not available with all doctors in Rockhampton. Doing good research is the key to find a bulk billing medical centre in Rockhampton before making an appointment. Calling the doctor’s office directly can help you learn if he/she bulk-bills.

Bulk billing is covered by some of the services, including

  • Eye tests from an optometrist
  • Specialists or GPs appointments
  • Tests requiring pathology
  • X-rays

Role of Medicare in Bulk Billing

Medicare was first introduced by the Australian Labour government in 1984 before it became the wide health care program of the Australian government.

The focus of Medicare is to provide free and efficient healthcare coverage for Australians. Medicare levies in Australia finance Medicare.

Medicare rebates and coverage are eligible for all Australians. Bulk billing is one of the Medicare practices introduced by Medicare to ensure good health coverage for all Australians.

Mixed Billing vs. Bulk Billing

 Mixed billing has become increasingly popular with many health practitioners and doctors in Rockhampton today. Yet, how does mixed billing work?

A “gap payment” is required from patients consenting to a mixed billing process with a doctor. The gap payment a patient has to put up with is the difference between the Medicare rebate and the fee of the practitioner. Varying gap payment is seen with different medical practitioners.

However, the full service of the doctor has to be paid if he/she doesn’t offer mixed billing or bulk billing. A claim made by a patient is the way for him/her to get a rebate from Medicare.

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