Rebate rise fails to match inflation

MEDICARE A1 level patient rebates for standard GP consultations are set to rise by approximately 2% from 1 November, more than indicated by media reports earlier this week but still well short of the rate of inflation.

Medicare data today revealed the correct fee increases for each of the Level A, B, C and D consultation items, although an official announcement is yet to be made by Medicare or the health department.

From 1 November this year Level A rebates will rise 30 cents to $16.30, Level B rebates will rise 70 cents to $35.60, Level C rebates are to rise $1.35 to $69, while the Level D rebate will increase $2 to $101.55.

AMA president Dr Steve Hambleton said the government was shifting costs to patients and that “proper and realistic” indexation of Medicare patient rebates was urgently needed.

“Families will have to pay more every time they visit the doctor,” Dr Hambleton said.