Changes to Telehealth Fees

This service is not for emergency care.  For urgent medical care call emergency 000 (Triple Zero) or go to an emergency department at a hospital.

Telehealth phone appointments with our GPs are still available. We do not currently offer Telehealth video appointments.

You can book a Telehealth phone consultation online or by calling our reception team on (03) 9629 1414.

Telehealth was introduced in response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.  Restricted Telehealth phone services will become a permanent feature of the healthcare system from 13th December 2021.  Telehealth consultations will continue to help our regular patients access non-urgent but essential healthcare from their home. This will support public health policies to help reduce the risk of COVID-19 exposure and spread.

Telehealth at Victoria Harbour Medical Centre:

  • 15-minute phone consultations with your GP by appointment
  • Phone calls from your GP may come from a Private Number (No Caller ID)
  • Your GP will call you as close as possible to your Telehealth appointment time
  • Your consent and identity will be confirmed by your GP before your consultation begins
  • Ensure your phone is charged and that you’re available to take the call in a quiet and private place
  • Your GP will discuss with you the most appropriate course of care and if a clinical in-person face-to-face appointment at the medical centre is needed

Common conditions appropriate for a Telehealth consultation:

  • COVID-19 related health questions
  • COVID-19 vaccine suitability assessments
  • Non-life threatening respiratory illness
  • Referral letters
  • Medical certificates
  • Discussing test results
  • Repeat prescription medication*
  • Repeat pathology investigation requests
  • Minor illness which can be managed at home
  • Nicotine and smoking cessation consultations
  • Routine PrEP and asymptomatic STI screening
  • Blood borne viruses, sexual or reproductive health consultations
  • Pregnancy Support Counselling
  • Mental health consultations and review of Mental Health Care Plans**
  • Management of chronic conditions like diabetes, asthma, COPD, blood pressure and heart disease

* This does not include restricted Schedule 4 and Schedule 8 (Controlled Drug) prescription medications and other Drugs of Dependence.  If you are a Medicare card holder Electronic Prescriptions are now available.

** Mental Health Care Plans (new) require a face-to-face appointment with your GP.

Fees:

Our medical centre charges a co-payment (out of pocket) fee for all Telehealth services. Refer to our Patient Information section on our website for a list of our Telehealth fee schedule.  Telehealth attracts a Medicare rebate only if you’ve had a face-to-face consultation with any of our GPs at our medical centre within the last 12-months.  If you don’t fit this Medicare criteria, a private non-refundable fee will apply.  This means there is no Medicare rebate.  This Medicare rule currently does not apply to:

  • Infants < 12 months old
  • People who are homeless
  • People who are living in a COVID-19 impacted area
  • Blood borne viruses, sexual or reproductive health consultations
  • Pregnancy support counselling consultations

From the 1st January 2022 the Medicare rule will also not apply to:

  • People isolating or in quarantine due to COVID-19 public health orders
  • Blood borne viruses, sexual or reproductive health consultations (ends 30th June 2023)
  • Pregnancy support counselling consultations (ends 30th June 2023)
  • People accessing nicotine and smoking cessation services (ends 31st December 2023)

For more information:

Refer to this Department of Health Telehealth Fact Sheet or the RACGP Fact Sheet about Telehealth.

For 24/7 telephone support about COVID-19 call the Victorian Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398.

For translating or interpreting call 131 450 first and tell them your language.  Click here for translated resources.  SBS Radio is also broadcasting COVID-19 news and information in your language.