What's new?

August 2013

The Department of Human Services Compliance Program for 2013-15 has been released.

For health professionals

Our Medicare Public Key Infrastructure certificate is expiring on 12 March 2014. It’s used to encrypt the transmissions you send to us electronically from your software, and is used to digitally sign the responses we send back. The certificate is used for Medicare Online, PBS Online, Aged Care Online Claiming, ECLIPSE and the Healthcare Identifiers Service.

Make sure you make at least one transmission from your software between 17 February and 9 March 2014 so that you can automatically receive our new certificate.

To find out more information go to Public Key Infrastructure.

Health Professional News

Changes to the Medicare Teen Dental Plan

The Medicare Teen Dental Plan will be replaced with the Child Dental Benefits Schedule from 1 January 2014.

Eligible teens will be able to access the Medicare Teen Dental Plan until 31 December 2013. Benefits will continue to be paid for services provided to eligible teenagers before the date of closure.

Child Dental Benefits Schedule

The Child Dental Benefits Schedule provides capped benefit entitlement for basic dental services for children aged 2-17 in families who meet a means test. The means test will be the same as the existing Medicare Teen Dental Plan, which requires receipt of Family Tax Benefit Part A or other certain government payments.

Services for basic essential dental treatment, such as check-ups, x-rays, fillings and extractions will be included, and patients will have access to dental benefit entitlements capped (indexed annually) over a two calendar year period.  For 2014, the benefit is capped at $1000 per child.

Medicare Billing Assurance Toolkit Trial

We are inviting large practices (those with four or more practitioners) to participate in a voluntary trial of a new Medicare toolkit.

With support from peak health bodies, we have developed a new practical resource—the Medicare Billing Assurance Toolkit—to help large practices manage Medicare billing risks and errors.

The toolkit has checklists, strategies and other information for improving risk assurance processes.

Participating practices will trial the toolkit over eight weeks to test whether it is easy to use and whether it can help reduce the risk of billing Medicare incorrectly.

For more information go to the Medicare Billing Assurance Toolkit Trial webpage.

If you have renewed your Medicare PKI certificate make sure you install the software

If you have renewed your Medicare PKI certificate, you must install the software on the CD that was sent with your certificate for it to work.

Find out how to install a PKI individual certificate.

Ordering PBS stationery

The Camerons Group is the contracted supplier of PBS stationery.

If you order stationery through us, continue to do so using the same PBS stationery ordering contact details.

If you're an approved community pharmacy, private hospital pharmacy or participating public hospital and order directly through the stationery supplier, you can order or make enquiries through The Camerons Group. Their contact details are on the PBS page.

If you’re a stoma association or paraquad association, you can fax your order to The Camerons Group.

For more information about ordering PBS stationery go to the PBS page.

The eHealth record system can help deliver more efficient health care

The personally controlled electronic health record system (eHealth) gives you an electronic summary of your patient’s key health information, taken from their existing records.

The eHealth record system will give you better access to patient information like medications, test results and allergies or treatments—meaning better, safer and more efficient care.

MBS items are available for use in the creation of shared health and event summaries. Health professionals will be able to bill the MBS for preparing both shared health summaries and event summaries as part of a consultation. In deciding which item to bill, health professionals will only have to consider the reasonable time it would take—not the complexity of the consultation.

To register your practice for the eHealth record system, go to the eHealthExternal link website.

Access through HPOS

If your practice is registered for the Healthcare Identifiers (HI) Service and has an active Healthcare Provider Identifier—Organisation (HPI-O) number, you can use HPOSExternal link to access the eHealth record system organisation registration services.

Note: HI Service Responsible Officers (ROs) and Seed Organisation Maintenance Officers (OMOs) must have either performed an Evidence of Identity check with the HI Service or be recorded as a known customer to perform these functions.

As a HI RO or Seed OMO, you can:

  • apply to register your organisation for the eHealth record system
  • set access flags against registered organisations for the eHealth record system, and
  • accept the eHealth record system organisation participation agreement

As a HI Service RO or OMO, you can give health professionals, with a Healthcare Provider Identifier-Individual number, access to the eHealth Record Provider Portal by recording an authorisation link.

Note: OMOs must have authorisation rights over an organisation to perform this function.

For more information about the eHealth Record System go to the eHealthExternal link website or read the HPOS user guides.

Check System Status

The system status pages that are accessible via the links below will assist you to identify whether the relevant systems are currently available at Medicare Australia. Each of the status pages contain a Service Announcements section for important messages and a section on how to interpret the details of the status page.

Provider percentile charts

Provider percentile charts show the number of services billed by peer groups for selected MBS items. You can use these charts to compare your billing data with your peers.

Last updated: 18 February, 2014