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We will be changing our care plan procedure to the following from Monday 26 November.

Every client wishing to access allied health through the Medicare scheme must attend 2 consultations at our practice. 

What happens in Consult 1?
The care plan is completed and collaborative letters addressed to the intended allied health providers and team members are completed and sent. You will not be able to start accessing your allied health visits until after the follow up appointment. 

Why?
Medicare states that the item number we bill to commence your 5 visits can only be billed once all components of the item have been completed. These components include a two-way communication between the GP/Nurse and intended team members (e.g. physio, podiatry, specialist).
They also notate that the client must be in attendance on the day the item number is billed. Furthermore, the two way communication must occur every time this item number is billed, including the reviews where no further visits are allocated.

This means, we can no longer allocate your visits and then the intended team members communicate with us sometime in the future. No communication = no 5 visits. It also means we can't just ring you to say your visits have now been allocated, you must come in and see us. Therefore, it means your care plan appointment will be two consultations as mentioned above. 

What happens in Consult 2?
This will occur 2 weeks after your first consult and will be with the nurse only. The nurse checks that the communication has been completed and the letters returned correctly. If the letters have not been returned, the nurse will phone the relevant provider and attempt to obtain verbal consent to participate in the plan, and document this. Once all team members have consented and communicated their plan to us, the nurse can provide you with the forms and the item number will be billed.

Why?
The idea behind the two-way communication is that all the allocated healthcare providers have consented to care for you and have a treatment plan in place to help you manage your chronic disease better. A care plan isn't designed to provide free or subsidised allied health, but to assist clients manage their chronic diseases better and we do this by having a specific treatment plan in place. 

Using this method, we are helping to build a healthier and happier community by working together with a comprehensive range of health care services. 

Dr Justin Dooland is a GP and Practice Principal at Windsor Village and Oakden Medical Centres

With thanks to our new partners

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Oakden Medical Centre logo