Episode 25

The Shift in Bulk Billing: Healthcare Data Analysis With Robert Dickson

In this episode of Medicubes, hosts Chris, Riwka, and Kim are joined by guest Robert Dickson to delve into the latest findings from the Touchstone report, a comprehensive analysis of primary care billing trends and practices in Australia.

Robert, the Chief Operating Officer at Cubiko, brings both his passion for healthcare technology and personal interests into the conversation.

The ebook is available at: https://www.cubiko.com.au/resources/general-practice-benchmarks-2024/

Key Talking Points:

  • Private fees range from $81.14 to $137 on average but have not escalated at the pace of inflation or Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) rebate amounts. The moderation in fees reflects practices' cautious approach to adjusting prices amidst their patients' financial strains.
  • Despite economic pressures, the report demonstrates a commitment by practices to chronic disease management with an uptick in the percentage of billings dedicated to this crucial area over the past two years.
  • Discussing the financial repercussions and sustainability concerns faced by healthcare providers. As the bulk billing rate dipped from 81% to 65% in early 2022, and practices primarily bulk billing reducing from 60% to a mere 25% by the end of 2023.
  • Examining the varied landscapes of regional and metropolitan primary care, noting the disparities in telehealth services, online appointments, and nurse-led interventions.
  • The effectiveness of recent incentives, such as the government’s triple bulk bill incentive for concession patients and children under 16, which has witnessed a small yet positive shift in billing rates for these groups.

Medicubes is a proud member of the Talking HealthTech Podcast Network - the premier audio destination for cutting-edge insights and thought leadership in healthcare delivery, innovation, digital health, healthcare ICT, and commercialisation. Learn more at www.talkinghealthtech.com/podcast/network

About the Podcast

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The Medicubes team bring you a monthly panel conversation of exciting and challenging topics in primary health care, answering listener questions and invited guests to the discussions.

About your hosts

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Kim Poyner

Accredited Health Coach and executive coach, with over 20 years of experience in General Practice and Intensive Care Units. Mentor to health professionals and organisations to achieve their best, specialising in chronic disease management, coaching, and change management programs.
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Riwka Hagen

An experienced general practice manager, with a passion for leadership development, coaching, and business management in the health sector. As the Director of Medical Business Services and Medical Business Coaching, she provides consulting, advisory, coaching, training, and mentoring services to health organisations Australia-wide, and is also the founder of the highly active Facebook group 'Practice Managers Network'.
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Chris Smeed

A lover of all things Practice Management and Data. Always thinking of ways to make life easier and to help with patient outcomes.