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Can Physio Be Bulk Billed in Australia? 

If you’re considering visiting a physiotherapist, there may be a lot of things on your mind. What is physiotherapyCan Physio Be Bulk Billed in Australia like? Are you even a candidate for physiotherapy? And, last but not least, how might you pay for it?

Whether you’re on a concession, a member of a health fund, both, or neither, there are options regarding paying for physiotherapy. But is bulk billing one of them? 

This article delves into whether physiotherapy can be bulk billed, and when and why this option may be possible. For personalised advice, contact our team at Northern Districts Physiotherapy today.


What is Physiotherapy?

Physiotherapy is a term that encompasses many different ways of addressing physical aspects such as pain and mobility issues. Through modalities such as exercise programs, manual therapy, electrotherapy, functional training, and education and advice, they aim to assist people enhance their overall quality of life.

As each person’s body is different, physiotherapy will look different for everybody. For some, it may involve soft tissue massage and joint manipulation, while for others it may focus on a combination of exercise prescription and shockwave therapy. Regardless of the road taken, physiotherapists are concerned with offering people the greatest opportunity to live their lives as well as possible.


What is Bulk Billing? 

Bulk billing is a payment option that some healthcare providers offer, but not all. It means that the healthcare provider bills Medicare, Australia’s universal healthcare scheme, rather than the client themselves. As a result, the client pays nothing out of pocket. 

Bulk billing is intended to make healthcare more accessible to more people. This is especially important for those who may be deterred from seeking healthcare because of financial barriers.

Bulk billing is typically associated with general practitioner appointments and some services such as diagnostic tests like ultrasounds, X-rays, and MRIs. However, many healthcare providers have the option to bulk bill some, none, or all of their clients. As such, bulk billing isn’t a black-and-white system that is valid 100% of the time for some types of healthcare providers and not others.


Why Might Physiotherapy be Bulk Billed/Covered by Medicare?

Whether or not a service is bulk billed in your specific scenario will be influenced by many factors. These include the type of service (a GP appointment, physiotherapy, another allied health service, and so on), the provider’s accreditation in their field, and your medical and/or financial circumstances. 

Medicare recognises physiotherapy’s significance in people’s lives and therefore does typically cover many physiotherapy services— to an extent. Whether your physiotherapy sessions may be covered by Medicare/bulk billed depends on a certain set of criteria and will vary based on individual cases.

Eligibility for Bulk Billing

It’s important to speak to your physiotherapist and/or their administration team to discuss your specific circumstances regarding payment. As whether you may be bulk billed or not depends on a variety of factors, there’s no clear-cut answer that covers one and all.

Factors that go into determining whether physiotherapy may be bulk billed include:

  • Whether it’s classed as ‘essential’ in the management of any chronic condition/s you may have
  • If and how you’ve been referred to their services by a GP or other healthcare professional
  • If you have a Chronic Disease Management Plan
  • The service is recommended as part of your Team Care Arrangements
  • The length of the session/s
  • Whether you’ve reached the Extended Medicare Safety Net Cap

And any others that may be relevant.


Alternative Ways to Pay for Physiotherapy

Some people in Australia have private health insurance. Depending on your provider and level of coverage, private health insurance aims to provide more comprehensive coverage and faster access to certain healthcare services.

People have the option to choose the coverage that may suit them best, whether that’s a basic level of coverage or a more comprehensive level of coverage. Some policies may include physiotherapy and others may not. For ones that do, the price cap and/or number of sessions will differ between providers and levels of coverage. Check with your insurer if you’re unsure whether or not your insurance covers physiotherapy.


Try Physiotherapy By NDPE 

The landscape of Australian healthcare has seen many changes over the years, and bulk billing is an essential component. Whether you’re interested in physiotherapy through your private health insurer or another way of funding, our team at NDPE is here for your physiotherapy needs. With knowledge and experience in addressing issues such as sciatica, foot and ankle pain, neck pain, headaches, running injuries, and more, we’re dedicated to assisting you to get back to your best. If you’re in West Ryde or a surrounding area like Eastwood, Denistone, or Marsfield, book your physiotherapy appointment with us today.




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Northern Districts Physiotherapy

Northern Districts Physiotherapy & Sports Clinic was established in 1995 and consists of an energetic team of highly qualified and experienced professionals who take the time to understand ...


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