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Latest news: Masks are and will remain mandatory when you attend our practice in person. We require that you log your attendance via our Victorian Government QR code (location code 3D7RE3 in the Service Victoria App) or by writing your details on the physical register at our reception. 

In accordance with the current COVID peak (black) status consultations are now being preferentially conducted via videoconference, with in person consultations by exception. Hospital elective surgery is limited to Category 1 and urgent 2A surgeries only, at The Avenue only. All individuals undergoing elective surgery are required to obtain a negative COVID test within 72 hours of their scheduled surgery and must self-isolate from the time of their test until their hospital admission.

Videoconsultations are conducted via our dedicated virtual clinic to maximise patient and staff safety. COVIDsafe measures in our rooms include acrylic screens, masks, hand sanitiser, face shields and physical distancing-related changes; long consultations and our See and Treat service remain adjusted under our COVIDsafe plan to include the use of telehealth to reduce face to face time. We require that all patients provide a referral prior to booking an appointment so we can identify and manage urgent and emergency conditions in a timely manner, and so that Dr Tomlinson can assess your suitability for a telehealth appointment and identify any further information or investigations that might be required before your consultation.       If you are eligible to get vaccinated, please do so. 

Fees

Written by Dr Jill Tomlinson on .

How much will the consultation cost?

Our standard consultation fee is $300; this fee is payable on the day. The fee is subject to a Medicare rebate of $76.15 if you have a doctor's referral. Cosmetic consultations are not eligible for a Medicare rebate.

Can you provide me with a quote for surgery?

We will provide you with a detailed fee estimate after your consultation. Unfortunately we are unable to provide you with a fee estimate for any surgical procedures until after your consultation, as our administrative staff are not able to determine what operation you will require.

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Do you 'bulk bill' or 'no gap'?

We do not "bulk bill" or "no gap". There are frequent gaps between the surgeon's fees and the amount you can receive back as a rebate from Medicare and your health fund. This is because these rebates have continued to lag well behind inflation and do not reflect the true cost of providing specialist health care.

We will provide a fee estimate for surgery and we encourage you to check with Medicare and your health fund to determine what level of rebate you will receive. Pensioners, Health Care Card holders and those experiencing financial difficulty are invited to discuss their circumstances with our administrative staff.

What are the costs of hospital operations?

This varies widely depending on the type or surgery. With all surgical procedures that are performed in hospital there are three main costs that need to be considered – the surgical fee, the anaesthetic fee and the hospital fee. Private health funds cover some of these elements which significantly reduces your overall costs. We will prepare a detailed invoice which will explain and itemise the costs associated with your surgery.

There may be an out of pocket expense ($40-200) for a histopathology referral; this is applicable in circumstances where tissue is removed in the operation and sent for specialist examination by a trained specialist histopathology doctor.

After hand and/or wrist surgery you will also require treatment by a hand therapist. A hand therapist is an occupational therapist or physiotherapist who has undergone special training in hand therapy. This treatment may include exercises, dressings and compression therapy and custom splinting. We will discuss these costs with you prior to surgery. Hand therapy costs and consumables (such as off-the-shelf splints) may be claimable back through your private health insurance depending on your level of ancillary cover.

Please contact your health insurer to determine what will be covered to avoid potentially significant unexpected out-of-pocket costs. Some health insurance policies have exclusions for plastic surgery (which would mean that you are not covered for in hospital services), others have exclusions for emergency treatment if you did not seek medical care within a specified time frame after the injury (usually within 24-72 hours) and most individuals have a health insurance that has an "excess" that is payable for a hospital admission.

How do I claim a rebate for my surgery?

Once your surgery has been completed you can take your receipt to Medicare; once Medicare has assessed your claim you can take your documentation to your health fund, or you can complete a two way claim form. Generally health funds will not pay a rebate on items that are not eligible for a Medicare rebate.  

If you have reached the Medicare Safety Net for this calendar year you may receive a much higher rebate than we calculate.

Cosmetic surgery is not eligible for Medicare rebates.

“Let’s Talk About Fees”

Written by Dr Jill Tomlinson on .

Before you go into hospital for any proposed treatment as a private patient, it’s your right to ask your doctor about his or her fees, and to find out about the fees of other doctors who might be involved in your care.

You should also ask your health fund about what you are covered for, and whether you will have any out-of-pocket costs to pay.

8 questions to ask your doctor about costs before you go to hospital

1.    What are your fees?

Your doctor will talk to you about his or her fees for any proposed treatment, and, if they can, about any out-of-pocket costs that you might have to pay when you go to hospital.

 

Website Disclaimer

This website is authored by Dr Jillian Tomlinson, a fully qualified plastic, reconstructive and hand surgeon who practices in Melbourne, Australia. This website aims to inform patients and health professionals about hand surgery, illness prevention and the practice philosophy of Dr Jill Tomlinson. This website's content is designed to complement, not replace, the relationship between a patient and his/her own doctor. The information is not intended to replace the advice of a health professional. This website does not host or receive funding from advertising or from the display of commercial content.