GP practices around the country are starting to feel the impact of Medicare changes that have been enforced without notice. These apply to any Provider Number Applications submitted after 10 September. All applications that do not comply WILL be rejected and will need to be re-submitted.
“This will cause significant delays to GPs starting work in a new practice as applications are generally only processed after a waiting time of at least 3 weeks”, says Martina Stanley, Director of Alecto Australia.
“The new applications will be rejected and will need to be re-submitted and go back to the end of the queue without any regard for individual circumstances or the needs of the community. In addition, the processing workload is likely to increase significantly in the coming weeks which is likely to cause further delays to all applications”, says Martina Stanley.
“We are extremely concerned about the obvious lack of accountability demonstrated by a government agency as Medicare have implemented these changes without telling anyone in the sector about new requirements for the applications – let alone the new ABN requirement.”
“Our staff talk to Medicare daily on the phone and nobody ever mentioned that there was any change at all or that we should use the new forms in the future. We have also spoken to corporate groups and they also didn’t receive any notifications in spite of the volume of applications they process each week.”
The situation is causing huge turmoil across the sector already, but the real impact will be felt in the next few weeks as large numbers of rejections are processed. Alecto Australia will be talking to journalists today to create awareness of the new requirements and to highlight the impact of poor communication with key stakeholders.
The changes to health legislation were approved by Parliament last June in order to increase Medicare’s powers of debt recovery for doctors who are abusing the system. We were unable to find any reference to the implementation date of 11 September, or any reference to publicity surrounding these changes.
To read the full Health legislation amendment click here
Should you have any questions about the changes or need assistance with anything else, feel free to contact us.
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