From 1 November 2019, a new suite of Medicare Benefits Scheme (MBS) items was introduced to support a model of best practice, evidence-based care, for patients with anorexia nervosa and other eligible patients with eating disorders. The new item structure means eligible patients will be able to receive a Medicare rebate when eligible providers undertake the development of an Eating Disorder treatment and management plan or a review which will activate a course of evidence-based eating disorder psychological treatment services (up to a total of 40 psychological services in a 12-month period) and up to 20 dietetic services in a 12-month period, depending on treatment needs. Further information is available at www.mbsonline.gov.au.
In our practice, Clinical Psychologists Janene England and Alex Corcoran have previously undertaken additional training in Motivational Enhancement Therapy and Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy, for eating disorders. Both have many years’ experience in the treatment of eating disorders, and the most common co-morbid conditions (including OCD, GAD, traumatic stress, mood disorders, personality disorders).
In trying to understand the changes, we have found the following 2 websites to be very helpful:
www.insideoutinstitute.org.au/medicare: This website has a step-by-step explainer of the model of care; eligibility criteria; downloadable template letters for developing Eating Disorder Plans, reviews and mandated correspondence; medicare items summary; approved treatments; and FAQs and factsheets.
www.thebutterflyfoundation.org.au: This website has extensive information about the medicare changes; a helpline; information about learning, development and training; a health professional referral database; and information about treatment options.