Medicare releases electronic claiming usage statistics

Medicare has released its annual report for the 2009-2010 financial year. The document contains an overview of the performance of the various electronic claiming channels available to patients, including Medicare Online, Medicare Easyclaim and Electronic Claim Lodgement Information Processing Service Environment (ECLIPSE).

The report reveals that as of the end of June 2010, 36 of the 37 health funds were facilitating claims using the ECLIPSE system for in-patient hospital claims.

Within practices, Medicare announced combined take-up of both Medicare Online and Medicare Easyclaim had increased by 6.5% throughout the financial year, with over 90% of bulk bill services submitted by either one of these channels.

More than 11,000 practices utilised a Medicare Online service throughout the year, with Medicare Australia now holding over three million sets of bank account details for consumers.

To incentivise uptake of both Medicare Online and Medicare Easyclaim, financial support was provided to medical practices and software vendors, however this support concluded for practices at the end of 2009. Over 1200 practices received a one-off lump sump payment of $750 (metro) or $1000 (rural and remote) for initiating at least one electronic patient claim, however a much larger number (5000 practices) were able to access the 18c per transaction incentive payment paid for both electronic bulk bill transactions and electronic patient claims.

Over six million dollars was allocated to support the development and rollout of integrated Medicare Easyclaim solutions. The report claims the “benefits of the subsidy, which was paid in June 2009, have started to be felt in the past year”, however it is understood that the bulk of this claimed growth can be attributed to HCN customers adopting the Tyro solution, which existed prior to the announcement of the subsidy.

Posted in Australian eHealth

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