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2 August, 2021

Payments to change at medical practice

The Clifton Community Health Services has had to make the difficult decision to introduce a contribution payment for some patients when they visit their doctor at the Clifton Medical Practice.

Clifton Medical Practice. Photo, Droneview Solutions

The revised payments for patients are as follows:

  • Pensioner concession card holders, people over 70 years and children under 16 years will continue to receive free, fully bulk billed services.
  • Health care card holders will contribute $10.90 per standard consultation and $14.25 per long consultation.
  • All other patients will contribute $20.90 per standard consultation and $24.25 per long consultation.

The change will take effect from 1 September 2021.

Clifton Community Health Services General Manager Brad Jones said years of rising costs and insufficient government funding has meant the Service can no longer maintain its fully bulk billed service for all patients.

“We have tried to delay this moment for as long as possible but the cost of providing high quality health care services in a regional location has been increasing every year and is expected to continue,” Mr Jones said.

“We need some patients to make a modest financial contribution at each visit.

“This will help us retain experienced medical staff and keep our doors open into the future.

Mr Jones said medical practices everywhere are facing the same challenges and the vast majority charge for consultations, some in excess of $75 per visit.

“We have kept our contribution payment to an absolute minimum.”

“Without this change, the sustainability of our medical practice is at risk and losing this local service would be devastating for the local community, particularly the vulnerable and elderly,” Mr Jones said.

“We trust our patients and local community will support this change and understand why it is necessary to guarantee the ongoing viability of our local medical services.”

Mr Jones said that for 70 years, Clifton Community Health Services has been caring for the people of Clifton and surrounds.

“Our commitment has, and always will be, to providing the best standard of health care we can,” he said.

“That will never change.”

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