Health Reform Patients

Informed Financial Consent Guide launched

The Federal Government and the Australian Medical Association (AMA) this week jointly launched a new guide to better aid Australians when faced with making decisions around medical treatments.

The AMA’s Informed Financial Consent Guide, a collaboration between doctors and patients, is aimed at helping patients better understand medical treatment fees and out of pocket costs.

The Guide will be made available from doctors, medical practices and organisations, and the AMA website.

Providing an estimate of fees and the costs payable by a patient after any government and health insurer rebates is the foundation for informed financial consent. Most doctors do it well already.

The new Guide will complement the Federal Government’s activities to provide improved medical specialists’ costs transparency, to make our system more effective and sustainable.

The Government announced that the improved transparency will help people choose the right specialist, taking cost into account without waiting for an appointment when they may feel locked in regardless of cost.

The Government’s out-of-pocket costs transparency website is being developed in consultation with consumers, medical professionals and insurers to make sure it includes appropriate information and features to assist and support consumers about decisions on their health care.

The website is expected to incorporate MBS benefits and information about insurer gap payment arrangements, in addition to the doctor’s maximum fee and the most common out-of-pocket costs for a treatment.

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