On September 24th 2018, the Federal Government announced plans to allow Medical Imaging Providers to apply for an MRI licence for their scanners. MRI licences are agreements between Medical Imaging Providers and the Federal Government that enable access to Medicare rebates for many MRI examinations performed on a specific individual machine. As a provider of Medical Imaging services to some of Queensland’s largest Private Hospitals, Uniting Care Medical Imaging is pursuing this opportunity to petition the Federal Government to provide full licences for our MRI scanners.
Accessing Medicare rebates for MRI is a complicated process which requires the Federal Government to provide a licence for a specific MRI scanner to access Medicare. Without easy access to an MRI licence, many medical imaging providers cannot obtain Medicare rebates for routine scans.
UCMI currently lacks full Medicare licences for our scanners at St Andrew’s War Memorial Hospital, Buderim Private Hospital and St Stephen’s Hospital. These hospitals provide extensive emergency, surgical and oncological care to patients without the benefit of a Federal Government full MRI licence. Patients in these hospitals often require MRI scans as part of their admission. Currently, without a full MRI licence, these sites cannot access Medicare funding for the scan. UCMI hopes that this new Federal Government initiative on MRI Licencing will allow us to correct this and make admissions to these hospitals less stressful for our patients.
The provision of an MRI licence to each of these sites represents a fantastic opportunity for the Federal Government to improve access to diagnostic imaging and reduce costs to the patient.