What is a telehealth video consultation?

Telehealth refers to a mode of interaction via either virtual video link or voice whereby an accredited health practitioner can provide their service to you. There are numerous ways to complete this such as via Zoom, skype or telephone. One of the platforms that we use is the “Zoom” platform as it adheres to the guidelines that the Australian Federal government lists as it offers encrypted sessions which ensures confidentiality and secure transfer of data.

Advantages of telehealth consultations

Every patient’s situation is different but in general, the benefits of this service include:

  • improved access to care
  • reduction in face to face interaction at a time where we are discouraged from any interaction with others

How can I have a telehealth consultation with my practitioner?

To have a telehealth consultation with your practitioner, your practitioner must consider it safe and suitable for you. Ensure you discuss moving to telehealth with your practitioner prior to booking, or if you haven’t been currently seeing one, call the practice on 9745 4259 to discuss the option.

Do I have to participate?

No. If you are uncomfortable with the conference you do not need to. A telehealth consultation will only happen if your clinicians consider it safe and suitable and you are happy to participate in a telehealth consultation. At the moment we are still providing face to face consults. However, if the time comes that we need to close our doors, we would like to provide an option for continued care is necessary.

Where are they provided?

You can participate in a telehealth consultation from your own home.

Who will arrange it?

If you call the practice and express your interest in continuing your appointments through telehealth, our reception staff will arrange a time that suits both you and your physiotherapist

What if I need to cancel my appointment?

Telehealth consultations require a lot of coordination at our end, so please try to keep your telehealth consultation appointment. If you need to cancel, please let us know immediately, because rescheduling telehealth consultations is more complicated than rescheduling a face-to-face appointment.

How should I prepare?

You can help get the best from a telehealth consultation by following these simple steps:

  • allow 15 minutes for preparation time
  • avoid wearing brightly patterned or reflective clothing as this may not show up well on camera
  • switch your mobile off or to silent mode
  • speak clearly so your voice can be picked up by the microphone
  • if you have a question or need help during the telehealth video consultation, just ask.

Who will be present?

You and your accredited health practitioner.

As with a face-to-face appointment, your spouse, partner, family or friend may accompany you if you wish.

How private is a telehealth video consultation?

The same privacy and confidentiality requirements that apply to face-to-face consultations apply to telehealth video consultations.

What if I have special needs?

If you have special needs such as an interpreter or a wheelchair, please let our telehealth video consultation coordinator know and they will make a note of these when your consultation with the specialist is confirmed.

Will the telehealth video consultation be recorded?

No. Our practice does not record telehealth video consultations and we do not give patients permission to make their own recordings of a telehealth video consultation. If your practitioner or your GP thinks it would be helpful for your treatment to record particular images during your telehealth video consultation, they would first seek your written permission to do so and they would ask you to repeat your consent on camera.

What if I feel I can’t continue?

Most patients feel a little nervous at the beginning of their first telehealth consultation because it’s a new way of being treated. However, most patients soon feel very comfortable with this kind of consultation. It’s very unlikely you’ll feel unable to continue with a telehealth consultation. If this does happen, you can leave although consultation fees may still apply.

How much will it cost?

Our normal billing schedule will apply.

Is telehealth covered by health insurance, workers comp, third party and medicare?

Due to the increased need for telehealth options due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many health funds are covering for telehealth consultations. Unfortunately as direct claiming needs to be done at the clinic, you will need to pay for your appointment in full and claim back once we have provided you with an invoice. You will need to get confirmation from your individual health funds regarding what you can claim back and from when.

Workers compensation and Third-Party patients are also able to attend telehealth consultations with prior approval from your insurance company.

Medicare is also available for Bulk Billing.

The procedure for attending a telehealth session

The Zoom platform can be easily set up on your laptop, tablet or mobile phone. It requires the download of an application or “app” on your device which allows for the session to take place.

Please refer to supporting documents which show you how to download the Zoom application, or if unsure speak with your practitioner. Once you have organised a time and date, a scheduled meeting will be made by the practitioner and they will email you a link that will take you to the meeting directly. If the link does not work, a meeting ID and password will also be provided, in which case you will be able to input these and be taken straight into the meeting. Zoom is our preferred platform for video conference due to it being built in the end to end data encryption which ensures your data and your video and voice recordings are not able to be hacked or accessed by other parties. However, if you prefer a phone call or a different platform please let us know.

What if I have questions?

If you have any questions about whether a telehealth video consultation may be suitable for you, please talk to your Physiotherapist.

If you have any general questions about how telehealth video consultations work, please call and speak with one of our reception staff who can offer you more information.