Telehealth Policy

Premier Cardiology is committed to delivering excellence in cardiac care for its patients.

When you see our Cardiologists mostly your presenting complaint(s) and plan of care will be delivered in our medical rooms with a face-to-face consultation. More recently Telemedicine services have become a key component to the delivery of health care services. Cardiologists generally prefer to see their patients face-to-face as often a thorough examination of your heart and general health is necessary before a treatment plan can be undertaken. However there are times when a telehealth consultation is acceptable – especially when you are returning to your Cardiologist to follow up tests results and a simple future plan for managing your cardiac health.

Starting 1 February 2024, Premier Cardiology will be introducing a Gap fee for Telehealth consultations. This will include both Phone and Video Telehealth consults.

With Telehealth now a permanent offering, there has been an increased shift towards electronic consultations with these often requiring the same time as in-person consults and thus occupying quite a large slice of a doctor’s appointment book. Many private practices currently charge a gap for Telehealth consultations. Such consultations currently attract a Medicare rebate for Medicare eligible patients.

Our Cardiologists accommodated online consults during the height of the pandemic by only accepting the Telehealth Medicare rebate (bulk-billing). The main focus was on patient access and service delivery for the community. We continued this service for almost 4 years, which has been a significant strain on doctors and practice resources. In order to continue to focus on quality, a desire to allocate appropriate time and significant cost inflation makes universal bulk billing no longer possible.

Please be assured that staff and doctors working at Premier Cardiology understand that patients face the same inflationary pressures and have spent a long time working out ways on streamlining this process and trying to keep gap costs to a minimum. Please contact our reception team to discuss the fees for a Telehealth (video call or phone call) and the Medicare rebate associated with this type
of consultation.

Dr Andrew Small and Dr Kelly Stanton have always focused on quality of care and providing patients with the time they need to properly address their cardiac health concerns. It is impossible to provide a quality service with a focus on medical excellence without charging a gap.

A Telehealth is a little different than a face-to-face consult. Please read the following to gain an understanding of how a Telehealth will work.

    1. Consent

When you complete your initial registration form within the practice your details are securely stored in our practice software. At the time of registering you should tick the box to say you agree to a Telehealth consultation, this means you give us consent for the doctor to contact you by phone/zoom/Facetime if you ever require a Telehealth consultation in the future.

    2. Before your Telehealth

You will receive communication verbally via a phone call and in the form of a text for your appointment date and time. Make a note of it in a safe place.

If you are having a telehealth video call you will receive a link via a text/email.

Click on this link just prior to the start time of your appointment.

Be prepared:

  • Find a quiet area that is well lit with limited distractions
  • Have a list of questions that you may wish to ask the doctor
    3. During your Telehealth

Your Cardiologist may ask for verification of identity and ask for verbal consent for the telehealth consultation to commence.

If someone else is in the room with you for the telehealth consultation you must inform the Cardiologist.

Speak clearly and try to keep to the point with your discussion.

Your discussion is NOT recorded.

    4. After your Telehealth

If you require any tests following the consult they will be emailed to you.

If you require a prescription this will be sent via an ‘escript’ to your mobile phone. The prescription can also be sent to your local pharmacy with your consent or you can collect the prescription from the medical rooms. Prescriptions will not be posted.

    5. Privacy during a Telehealth

Your Cardiologist will be in a private room with the door closed and your discussion will only be between you and your cardiologist.

As with a face-to-face consultation your doctor will write a letter to your GP following your consult.

    6. Updates to this Policy

This Policy will be reviewed from time to time to take account of new Medicare expectations, laws and technology, changes to our operations and other necessary developments. Updates will be publicised on the practice’s website.

    7. Contact details for Telehealth queries

Please direct all concerns or questions in relation to Telehealth related matters to our friendly reception team:

Phone: 07 3311 1633