The below is an excerpt from an article I wrote for med-tech platform, Clinic To Cloud.
Starting a medical practice? Turn our 2017 learnings into our 2018 success
Thinking about setting up your own medical practice? Without doubt, 2018 is bursting with potential for all medical practice owners to be. We’ve exploring the latest legislation, industry trends and insights so you can turn our 2017 learnings into your 2018 success. Here’s what we’ve learnt:
From 2017 learnings to 2018 success
The industry is changing
Various legislation and national budget changes throughout 2017 will have an impact on how Australia’s healthcare industry will operate in the future. These include the following:
The government will gradually lift the four year freeze on Medicare rebates
At present, the Medicare rebate of $37 only covers about 50% of the recommended consulting fee. According to Associate Professor Helen Dickinson from the University of Melbourne, this means medical practitioners either cover the remainder of the costs themselves or pass this on to patients. However, from next year the indexation of Medicare (resulting in increased rebates) will be reintroduced — starting with GP and specialist consultations from July 2018 and procedures from July 2019. This means there will be less out-of-pocket cost involved for all parties, which may encourage patients to book a consultation where they would normally be dissuaded by the cost.
Small businesses will be able to immediately deduct assets less than $20,000, if purchased by 30 June 2018.
If you’re considering starting your own medical practice, this may incentivise you to start sooner rather than later as this tax incentive is set to expire on June 30, 2018. More information on the $20,000 instant asset write-off can be found here.
Some pharmaceutical prices will be reduced.
Through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Government’s deal with Medicines Australia, the cost of certain medications will be reduced. This will result in less out-of-pocket costs for medical clinics and patients alike.
Many of these changes are likely to result in further budget cuts and legislation updates over the next year. It’s crucial to be aware of any upcoming changes which may affect your private practice; to stay informed or to subscribe to news updates, visit the PBS website.
You can read the rest of the article here.