Bulk Billing: Making mental health care accessible for all Australians
At Chat Corner Psychologists, we offer our clients the opportunity to access mental health care services that will not come at a significant cost to you if you are facing difficult financial circumstances. That’s why we offer a sliding scale of services, which includes hours during the week where we bulk billing services to ensure you can receive the care you need without having to pay out of pocket for health services.
Looking for bulk billing services immediately?
So, what exactly is bulk billing?
It’s when your psychologist or associated healthcare provider bills Medicare for the services provided to you, and accepts the Medicare benefit as full payment for the services provided (Services Australia, 2019). When obtain these services, you will be required to either sign the necessary forms or simply press the ‘OK’ button on the EFTPOS terminal after your appointment to authorise payment (Services Australia, 2019).
With our online psychological services, all you need to do is provide your Medicare number and individual reference number before the session, and we’ll take care of the rest. Any psychological services would be processed after your appointment.
Important points to note about bulk billing services
It’s important to note that not all health professionals offer bulk billing services. Before attending your appointment, make sure to clarify whether your healthcare provider actually bulk bills. You can do this by reviewing the details on their website or simply calling or emailing their practice. If your psychologist or health practitioner doesn’t bulk bill, you may need to pay for the ‘gap fee’ portion or ‘full fee’ cost of your appointment. However, it may be possible to claim the rebate portion of the cost of your appointment back from Medicare. We encourage you to check whether their psychologist is a bulk billing psychologist, doctor or other associated healthcare professional before your appointment.
The good news is that most healthcare services are eligible for Medicare Australia bulk billing rebates, including visits to bulk billing general practitioners, psychologists, and specialists. Specific tests and scans like x-rays and pathology tests may also be covered.
Also bear in mind that if you had more than one visit to the same healthcare practitioner on that particular day i.e. two or more simultaneous visits to the psychologist on the same day, you may not be able to process all the services provided that day through Medicare Australia (Services Australia, 2019). If you have provided your Medicare details twice on the same day, please advise your psychologist or health provider immediately and obtain clarification on your situation with Medicare Australia, as you may incur out-of-pocket fees.
When can my services be bulk billed?
Please ensure that your healthcare services meet the following conditions for bulk billing (Services Australia, 2019):
- You must be enrolled in Medicare.
2. Your health professional must choose to bulk bill, or the practice must be a bulk billing practice.
Remember to bring your Medicare card or health insurance details when you visit your health professional to ensure a smoother fee processing. Fortunately, most services eligible for the Medicare Australia bulk billing rebates are comprehensive, covering visits to bulk billing general practitioners, psychologists, specialists, and specific tests and scans such as x-rays and pathology tests (Services Australia, 2019).
To illustrate how to obtain a bulk billing psychologist referral, consider the following example:
John wants to engage a bulk billing psychologist to work through his mental health issues. The first step would be to advise his GP to develop a valid mental health care plan and referral letter. The GP clinic will send it directly to the psychology clinic that John has decided to work with. If John’s GP bulk-bills, the mental health care plan and referral letter created for John are covered under Medicare Australia’s services, meaning John does not have to pay any out-of-pocket costs in for the services obtained from the GP clinic.
Kindly note that before John visited his GP, he sought the services of a bulk billing psychologist, ensured his psychological services were covered by Medicare rebate before any therapy sessions began and confirmed that the cost of psychological services did not involve a ‘gap’ fee.
If you need further guidance, we can assist you in scheduling a therapy session, especially if you require a bulk billing psychologist.
At Chat Corner Psychologists, we make the process of obtaining a bulk billing psychologist referral easy. Simply visit a bulk billing general practitioner to discuss your mental health issues and develop a mental health care plan. Your GP forwards the mental health care plan and referral letter to our clinic and, and we ensure that the mental health care plan and referral letter are valid. Rest assured, we have specific timings where you won’t have to pay any out-of-pocket costs in addition to the basic Medicare rebate for psychological services.
Still got questions? Our team of registered psychologists is ready to help. Reach out to us through:
1. Leaving your details in the contact form below
2. By leaving a message in the chatbox on the right side of the page
3. Giving us a call at any of the numbers provided below
We do our best to try and make seeking therapy less of a daunting process by providing guidance every step of the way, be it a query related to scheduling, questions about our therapy services, or obtaining a clarification about our processes. We are here to assist while maintaining your privacy and confidentiality at the forefront.
At Chat Corner Psychologists , we believe that everyone should have access to quality mental health care services. Let’s begin your first step on this journey.
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02 8091 1288 - NSW or QLD
03 9013 6388 - VIC or TAS
08 7200 6688 - WA, NT or SA
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