Being safe at work is the most important thing. It is a responsibility shared by both the employee and the employer. This article offers information about the WorkCover physio program and which conditions are required to become a part of it, information about bulk billing physio and how to apply for the program, and how to make a Medicare claim to get your benefits from non-bulk billing physio services.
Get informed about these useful health service tools and make your visit to the physiotherapist less stressful.
What is WorkCover physio?
WorkCover physio ensures workers who get an injury or illness at the workplace are compensated for medical expenses, lost earnings, and other costs. It helps injured workers achieve a quick and safe return to the working process. Both employer and employee share the responsibility for doing the job safely.
WorkCover physio is the primary regulator for health and safety at work when it comes to all kinds of physiotherapy issues. This insurance is mandatory for most of Australia’s employers. It covers your business for financial costs that you would incur if your worker sustains illness or a work-related injury.
WorkCover physio covers workers in Australia. Its mission is to provide support and assistance to any workers who sustained a work-related injury or accident during the work (burns, stretches, fractures, sprains, lacerations, or industrial deafness). WorkCover physio packages cover only work-related injuries. For all types of injuries incurred at work, the WorkCover physio policy is applicable. Otherwise, any issue outside of it is not covered.
To achieve a successful WorkCover physio rehab, the process must be collaborative and transparent between all parties including the employer, worker, and WorkCover physio clinic. They have to exchange all necessary information related to the injury and be very transparent with each other.
WorkCover physio treatment usually includes five sessions. Most of the services will be covered by the WorkCover physio program at no cost. Passing the first ones, the worker’s health condition will be subject to re-evaluation and if necessary, the physio specialist will recommend additional ones, until the worker returns to work. WorkCover physio usually covers the full rehabilitation treatment process. Some additional aspects of the process might not be covered by the WorkCover physio framework. It depends on the case.
Realizing the importance of WorkCover physio to the business, the number of employers who apply has begun to grow in recent years. In the following paragraph, learn about how to apply for Workcover physio.
Guide To Applying For WorkCover Physio?
Follow these simple rules in a situation where you need to apply for the WorkCover physio service:
- Your physiotherapist is the first stop. The injured worker must visit a physio specialist who works with WorkCover physio. He examines the patient and issues a medical certificate.
- After applying, the employer lodges a report and a recovery plan. The injured worker submits a claim and waits for an answer (approximately 3 weeks). The employer should communicate with the WorkCover physio specialist to get a successful implementation of the rehabilitation process as soon as possible.
- When the claim has been finalized and the recovery plan ended successfully, the worker returns to work.
What is Bulk Billing Physio?
Bulk billing is a payment option under Australia’s Medicare system of universal health insurance. Its primary purpose is to economically limit medical fees when you visit a physiotherapist. It may cover a prescribed set of health services listed in the Medicare Schedule of Services, at the discretion of the health care provider. The healthcare provider – usually a doctor – receives the fee for outpatient services and scheduled inpatient fees by billing the government to the patient’s Medicare card. The service provider receives a fixed share of the planned fee but avoids the costs and risks of billing and collection. It could be described as a form of factoring.
Bulk billing physio is a part of the general bulk billing insurance that covers only physiotherapy health services, provided by licensed physiotherapists. But, you should know that not all physiotherapists across Australia choose bulk billing. Therefore, it is recommended to check the list of bulk billing physio specialists before making an appointment.
Medicare does not allow billing the patient for a bulk billing co-payment (although it was previously allowed). The bulk billing physio specialist may not charge the patient additional for that service.
Generally, physiotherapists in Australia can choose whether to use bulk billing physio or not. Most often, physiotherapy services in major cities are bulk billed, but less so in rural, regional, and remote areas of Australia where there is a greater shortage of physiotherapists and health services.
Guide To Applying For Bulk Billing Physio
The first step you have to do is to review the list of bulk billing physio specialists to ensure that you will be able to use the benefit. Do your research on the Health Direct Australia official page.
Here is a quick search guide to find bulk billing physio specialists:
- The first step, from the field of SERVICES, select ‘Physiotherapy’
- In the second step, from the field of PREFERENCES, select either ‘Bulk billing (no fees)’ or ‘Bulk billing available. Some additional preferences (accessible parking, toilet, telehealth capable, wheelchair access, free parking) are available to be selected.
- The third step, From the field of LOCATION, write your location. You can also use your current location while you research through mobile.
- In the fourth step, click SEARCH.
A full list of bulk billing physio specialists, according to your search preferences will open. There you can find all the necessary information for them (official website, phone number, location, email, operating hours, etc.).
After you find your bulk billing physio specialist you can get in touch with them through phone or email. It’s better to call to check for availability and schedule an appointment in person. In that way, you will be sure about the day and hour of your booking.
How To Make A Medicare Claim For Non-Bulk Billing Physio Service
If your physiotherapist doesn’t choose bulk bills, you will have to pay for the provided service, but you will still be able to refund the paid funds. It’s called a Mеdicare claim. There are several different ways of making a Medicare claim, so find out how to make it after you have paid your physiotherapist.
- Make your Medicare claim at the physiotherapist’s office. First, you need to show your Medicare card to the doctor. Аfter you have finished with the payment, ask the physiotherapist if he could make an electronic claim for you. If he can, he will do it immediately. Then, the process will go into processing and the payment of your Medicare benefit will go into either: the account for the EFTPOS card or the bank account you have registered with the clinic. If the payment goes through a bank account you have to give the correct personal information and your bank account. For any changes to your details or your bank account, you must update your Medicare account.
- Make your Medicare claim online. If your physiotherapist doesn’t claim at his office, you will be able to do it online by either: your Medicare online account or the Express Plus Medicare mobile application. Be aware that only claims newer than 2 years are acceptable.
First, you need to register a Medicare online account to be able to make an online claim. During your registration, you will have to register your bank details. You can finish your claim from your PC or mobile phone through Express Plus Medicare. Keep in mind that you have your receipt and invoice when you start the Medicare claim because you will be asked to fill in some details from it. You can expect the funds in your account to be paid to you within 7 days.
- Make your Medicare claim through the mail. Another option to make your Medicare claim is by downloading and completing a Medicare claim form with the required information and sending it to the following address – Services Australia, Medicare, GPO Box 9822 in your capital city.
When you submit this type of claim, you will get your refund within 28 days. The payment is performed electronically into the bank account you have registered with the clinic.
- Make your Medicare claim at the service center. You can also make your claim at one of the service points, all across Australia. You can find the nearest Medicare service center to you at the following link. Visit it and complete your Medicare claim at the service center. The refund will be paid into your bank account within 28 days.
After finishing your claim in any of the above ways, check your bank account occasionally. If you don’t get the benefit into your bank account after the expiry of the stipulated days, it might be possible that your claim is rejected. In that case, you will be timely informed of the reasons for the rejection. Here are some possible ones:
- There is already a previous request for the same case
- Мore details are needed for your claim to be properly assessed
- There is a technical issue or mistake with your claim
- The maximum allowable benefits for the service are already paid
Keep in mind that you will have to prove your payment to support the claim. Without this, you will likely be rejected.
We hope that we managed to help you to understand how Medicare and Bulk Billing physio work, and some conditions to apply for these services. This article will serve as a guide about how to reduce your cost, whenever you need a physiotherapist’s help.
If you find yourself in the situation of using the services of Workover physio or bulk billing physio, follow the instructions given above and realize your rights.