Breaking News: Health Fund Rebates announced for online Physiotherapy consultations

March 26, 2020

Private health funds are fast tracking access for members to tele-physiotherapy consultations while Australians’ movements are restricted by the COVID 19 pandemic.

Several private health funds have agreed to provide benefits for individual (one on one) physiotherapy tele-consultations/video consultations where:

  • The customer is undergoing an existing course of treatment and the customer has seen the physiotherapist over the past six months, or
  • For new patients, the tele-physiotherapy service has been recommended by their general practitioner or relevant medical specialist, and
  • The primary condition being treated is one of:
    • Post orthopaedic surgery rehabilitation (e.g. Total hip or knee replacement)
    • Chronic musculoskeletal condition (e.g. osteoarthritis)
    • Cardiac rehabilitation
    • Pulmonary rehabilitation, or
    • pelvic floor muscle training,
  • The service is delivered before 30 September 2020, and
  • The service is undertaken in accordance with Australian Physiotherapy Association guidelines.

Health funds will provide coverage for tele-consultations provided by physiotherapists from Tuesday 14 April 2020 subject to the conditions listed above.

We encourage patients who are health fund members to check with their health fund to see if they will cover tele-physiotherapy consultations. Some funds may impose additional conditions.

Initially benefit payments will be on production of a receipt from the provider.  Patients will have to pay the provider for the consultation and then claim the benefit through their health fund.

Claiming systems and health funds’ processes are not set up to deliver benefits for tele-health services automatically as is possible with face to face services. Claiming systems, PHA, professional associations and individual funds are working address the system issues as quickly as possible.

The government, WorkCover and now our Private Health Insurers are all supporting the provision of this online video consultation or Telehealth service to you. Again we remind you that our service continues within our clinic as normal and also via our new online digital video consultations. Click here to see how easy it is to connect to us via an online video consultation.

So our advice would be to continue your treatment currently either in clinic or via our online video consultations. We are continuing in clinic as normal. Our video consultations are markedly reduced in charge to enable you to continue your care from home if you wish. There is so much we can help you with from the comfort of your home so please contact our reception staff to organise this. I will share on our website a video displaying how easy this is later today so please don’t feel you cant do it if you are technologically challenged. I am that way myself and this was easy so be reassured. The appointments are open to booking now.

So to summarise, if you have no Health Insurance you can come and see us at anytime in-clinic or via video consultation.

For those with Private Health Insurance: In order for you to claim through your health fund what we think is the case is:

  • that unless you see us as a new patient before the 14th April, you will not be able to see us via video consultation as a new patient without seeing the Dr. and only for the conditions listed above.
  • If you have seen us in the 6 months prior to the 14th April, you will be able to continue to be treated without seeing the Dr. and for whatever injury you have as opposed to the listed criteria I will now post.

We will seek clarification on this matter.

So move well stay well everyone. We are here to help you. Give us a call and arrange if we can. In the meantime keep up to date by following us here or via Facebook.