MyMedicare is here and as patient registration begins in October, there are a few benefits – aka opportunities – for both patients and practices.
There are also a few to-dos.
Important questions answered
- What do I need to do?
- How can it benefit my patients?
- How can it benefit my practice?
With the help of health clinic data collator and analyser, Cubiko, we investigate.
“MyMedicare is something to get excited about”. Says Cubiko Chief Operating Officer, Rob Dickson.
“You’re most certainly better off knowing about it, and likely better off getting set up and registered”.
Firstly and briefly, what it is
MyMedicare aims to enhance the relationship between healthcare professionals and patients.
To do this, the program encourages patients to voluntarily ‘register’ to their practice and/or GP, which in turn offers the ability for greater continuity of care, among other things.
An example per the MyMedicare website is practices having “more information about regular patients, making it easier to tailor services to fit the patient’s needs”.
You can find more specifics here.
But back to our important questions.
What do I need to do?
To utilise MyMedicare, you need to link your PRODA account to Organisation Register in Health Professional Online Services (HPOS), and then access the Organisation Register.
You’re eligible IF you
- Provide Medicare-funded services
- Are registered in the following Services Australia systems:
- Provider Digital Access (PRODA)
- Health Professional Online Services (HPOS)
- the Organisation Register
- Have at least one eligible provider linked to the practice in the Organisation Register
- Meet additional various requirements
Once you’re registered, you’re all set until the MyMedicare program commences on 1 October, 2023.
Eligible patients must have a Medicare or Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) Veteran card to register in MyMedicare.
You’ll be able to register those patients online or in-person.
How can it benefit my patients?
Continuity of care
Developing a relationship with a provider or team of them improves patient outcomes.
Patients who visit multiple providers in different geographic locations may see these improved outcomes when MyMedicare encourages them to stick with the same provider.
Many patients who already see the same GP or visit the same practice, like those with chronic conditions, are unlikely to see this benefit.
MyMedicare patients will have access to:
- Longer MBS-funded Level C and D telephone calls with their usual general practice
- Triple bulk billing incentive for longer Level C, D and E MBS telehealth consultations for patients under 16 years of age, pensioners, and concession card holders
Reducing hospital admissions
Avoiding hospitals can be a big driver for some patients. With minimal home comforts, they can be inconvenient for support from loved ones, have little privacy, and can be costly.
Hospitals can also be pretty intimidating, albeit plain scary, for many people.
Better access to a regular GP could prevent patients visiting, or needing to visit the emergency department or reduce overnight hospital admissions.
How can it benefit my practice?
Possible financial benefits
Adding up the current announcements only, and not factoring in any possible future ones, there are potential dollars in extra revenue available.
Though not yet confirmed, GPs are likely to receive $2,000 per patient per year, plus a $500 bonus for keeping patients out of hospital.
Patient registration can potentially strengthen relationships between patients and GPs as it can lead to more patients sticking with a regular practice.
Although as mentioned above, this likely won’t affect current regulars like those with chronic illnesses, it does have potential to strengthen ties between less-than-active patients and their GPs.
Someone else might register your patients
If you don’t register your patients, another practice will likely be keen to.
The general consensus from our research and networks is that it’s better to register patients than not.
If you don’t register your patients and another practice does, it could cost you that connection, other benefits listed above and even business.
Possible commitment and loyalty
In general, when people sign up to businesses, they often feel committed or at least connected.
This is regardless of paying.
It’s well known that encouraging registration has marketing benefits; think registering for a webinar, event or even logins to something online.
Often, people feel much more connected to an organisation and can turn into loyal customers.
👉 ON THAT NOTE
If registrations or signups are something that piques your interest outside MyMedicare, consider this:
Data collection and segmentation
Registration processes provide customer data, including contact information, demographics, and even preferences, which can be used to personalise and tailor campaigns and communications.
Registrations often serve as a source of new leads. Registrants have expressed interest in your offering and can be nurtured through the sales funnel.
With a database of registered customers, you can engage with them over the long term, increasing customer retention rates.
There’s also analytics and insights, feedback collection, email marketing and other benefits, so get in touch with us if you’d like to explore.
“At the end of the day, MyMedicare is about cementing the practitioner-patient relationship that already exists among so many practices.
“It’s about helping with patient care.” Says Mr Dickson.