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Medicare Benefits

Australia's Medicare system has three parts:

Hospital

If you choose to be a Medicare (public) patient, you can be treated, at no charge, in a public (Government owned) hospital by a doctor appointed by the hospital. You cannot choose your own doctor and treatment may not be immediately available for non-emergency conditions.

Medical

In hospital - under Medicare, you can be treated in a public hospital, at no charge, by a doctor appointed by the hospital. If you elect to be a private patient Medicare will cover you for 75% of the Government Scheduled (MBS) Fee for medical costs associated with being a private patient in a hospital.

Out of hospital - Medicare will reimburse 85% of the MBS Fee for your treatment. If your doctor bulk bills Medicare, you will not have to pay anything.

Pharmaceutical

Under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) you pay only part of the cost of most prescription medicines purchased at pharmacies. The rest of the cost is covered by the PBS. The Government decides how much you pay towards the cost of PBS medicines. From 1 January 2011, you pay up to $34.20 for most PBS medicine or $5.60 if you have a concession card. The Australian Government pays the remaining cost.