No matter how popular bulk billing is with patients, more and more GPs strive to work in a mixed billing practice. However, we believe it is not easy to make a clear case either for or against mixed billing.
So, what are the pros and cons of mixed billing?
|Pros for Mixed Billing||Cons for Mixed Billing|
|GPs sometimes feel more appreciated for their work||Patients are more likely to visit you 2 or 3 times per year rather than regular comprehensive visits and are Patients are less likely to come back for further investigation of symptoms due to costs|
|Higher fee per consultation||Building a patient base usually takes around 6-12 months|
|Financial freedom to spend longer with patients||Patients are likely to come with a list of multiple items per consultation|
|GPs can see less patients per hour||Patients are less likely to come back for further investigation of symptoms|
|Increased ability to get to know patients on a personal level||Less likely to get “walk-in” patients|
Apart from the above pros and cons that come straight to your mind. There are some other points you should consider before moving to a mixed billing clinic:
- There is an urban myth that mixed billing GPs earn more than those in bulk billing however this is contrary to the information the industry has received and also what we find in our annual GP salary survey.
- In mixed billing practices, a percentage of the patient base will be bulk billing – children, the elderly, and patients on some form of government support. In some clinics, the percentage of privately paying patients can be very small and the differences to a bulk billing practice marginal.
- There is an ongoing demand for patients across the demographic spectrum to use bulk billing doctors, even in the most affluent suburbs. Bulk billing practices are thriving and will continue to offer good opportunities for new GPs to develop a sound patient base.
Are you unsure whether a bulk billing or mixed billing will be the right fit for you? Contact Alecto for a confidential discussion on 1800 604 332 or firstname.lastname@example.org