Medicare items have been available since 1 November 2008 for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who have had a health assessment from their GP and require follow-up allied health services. Medicare rebates are available for up to five allied health services in total per calendar year. The annual limit of five allied health services is in addition to allied health services for chronic disease management.

Allied health services – psychology Medicare item

Psychologists planning to deliver this item must read the full description of the item, together with explanatory notes, in the Medicare Benefits Schedule - Allied Health Services - 1 November 2009 - Acrobat icon - small 

Referral requirements

A referral must be made by a GP who has undertaken a health check of the client consistent with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Medicare health checks (GP items 704, 706, 708, 710).

The client must be referred using the Referral form for follow-up allied health services under Medicare for people of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent who have had a health check - Acrobat icon - small

The psychologist must be in receipt of the referral at the initial consultation and must retain the referral for 24 months from the date a service was rendered for Medicare Australia auditing purposes.

Eligible clients

A person is of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent if they self-identify. The client must not be an admitted patient of a hospital.

Services to be provided

The individual psychological service must be of at least 20 minutes in duration.

Number of services

Medicare rebates are available for up to five allied health services in total per client in a calendar year. The five services may consist of any combination of services from eligible allied health professionals. The annual limit of five services per client is in addition to the five allied health services allowed under the chronic disease management initiative.

If all services are not used during the calendar year, the unused services can be used in the following year and will be counted towards the services allowable in that year.

Eligibility to provide item

A number of different allied health professionals are able to provide services under this initiative.

Psychologists must be fully registered with the Psychologists Registration Board in the State or Territory in which they are practising. Provisionally registered psychologists are not eligible to provide services.

This item can only be claimed by psychologists who are in private practice and registered with Medicare Australia. It is not necessary to register again to provide this item.

Reporting requirements

A written report must be provided to the referring GP after the first and last service, or more often if clinically necessary. Written reports should include:

  • Any assessments carried out
  • Any treatment provided
  • Proposed future management, as necessary.

Schedule fee and rebate

Schedule fee (session of at least 20 minutes duration) = $58.85

Rebate = $50.05

 

Further information