All medical practitioners are, of course, and should at all times regard themselves as being free, and indeed duty bound, to make their own judgement as to what fees they will charge for any service. Medical practitioners should satisfy themselves in each individual case as to a fair and reasonable fee having regard to their own practice cost experience and the particular circumstances of the case and the patient.
The AMA encourages medical practitioners to determine their fees based on their own practice costs. The cost of running medical practices which varies across the country, includes employing practice staff and operating expenses such as computers, rent, electricity, general insurance and professional insurance.
AMA Fees List
The AMA publishes the List of Medical Services and Fees. It is provided to members for costing assistance and guidance only.
The AMA Fees List is available in PDF and CSV (comma separated variable) file for importing into practice management software. Members can purchase additional copies by completing an order form. The Summary of Changes detailing new, amended or deleted items for 1 July 2016 is available here.
AMA items for video consultations contain indicative fees. It is acknowledged that fees will vary considerably based on the type of video facilities used and how frequently they are used. The AMA Consultation Fees Calculator assists members to set their own fees for video consultations based on their own practice costs and expected utilisation. To calculate your fee for providing video consultations, please click here.
The Fees Gap Chart highlights the disparity in increases between the MBS fees and the AMA MFI, CPI and AWE indices.
The AMA has long campaigned for better indexation of Medicare schedule fees so that patients receive appropriate rebates for their medical care. The AMA Gaps Poster shows the effect of the difference between the indexation of Medicare Schedule fees and the indices for Consumer Price Index and average weekly earnings. The poster is produced to assist doctors to explain to their patients why they might have to pay a gap for their medical care. This page includes a downloadable A4 size poster that you may print and display in your practice.
In recent years, Governments have made arbitrary cuts to Medicare rebates by either poor or no Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) indexation, cutting the amount of existing Medicare rebates, withdrawing MBS funding of certain medical services and capping some Extended Medicare Safety Net benefits. At the same time, the costs of running a medical practice are increasing. Many practices are having to increase their fees to meet these costs. A template letter has been prepared for medical practitioners to provide to patients to inform them about why the medical practice has had to increase its fee and why out-of-pocket costs for patients are increasing. To download the template letter to patients about increased medical fees please click here.
The AMA has compiled a list of specific tasks to aid medical practitioners in preparing for and implementing a smooth transition to patient billing for their services. For a copy of the checklist please click here.
The decision to move from bulk billing to patient billing can be difficult and challenging for medical practitioners. Increasingly, medical practices are finding they must make this move to ensure their viability and enable the continued delivery of quality medical care to their patients. The attached testimonials reflect the positive outcome experienced by doctors who have made the transition and may provide encouragement for those who are considering making the change.
The following information has been compiled to explain, in the simplest terms, the Medicare benefits rules for referrals and the implications of not adhering to them.
The Medicare Safety Net provides a higher Medicare rebate to patients when their out-of-pocket costs exceed the threshold of $447.40 for all Medicare cardholders.
The Extended Medicare Safety Net (EMSN) covers 80% of the patient's out-of-pocket costs once they reach a certain threshold. For more information, please click here.
Non-members can purchase the AMA Fees List on completion of an order form. Please complete and return via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax on (02) 6270 5499.
This link provides access to the AMA Fees List Online database. This allows AMA members to search the database for individual items or groups of items.
The AMA has developed a fees indexation calculator for the benefit of members to calculate your own personal fee increase based on your individual cost profile.
This paper provides information on how the AMA fees is calculated using the AMA Medical Fees Index.
Due to the type of work involved in preparing medico-legal, third party or other reports, e.g. for employers or insurance companies, varies so much and is influenced by a range of factors, such as the State or Territory in which the work is undertaken, the AMA does not recommend a level or range of fees for these services. Individual practitioners set their fees for this type of work based on the time and extent of the work involved.
This resource, with links to the ATO, provides information about the GST and how it applies to medical practice.
Questions regularly asked of the AMA regarding doctors' fees and related issues.
History of the AMA List of Medical Services and Fee.