I just had an MRI done in Canberra at John James. After a referral from Dr Still - $285. Receipt says no medicare or health fund refunds available for the item.
I'm not exactly strapped for cash but hardly swimming in it either. From what I gather, had my GP sent me along I could have rebated on Medicare? That's ridiculous.
Does anyone know why there is such a large variation in charges for MRI's?
I also had an MRI of my knee done at John James in Canberra earlier this year (also with a referral from Rob Still - no Medicare rebate) for $285. 'Am having another one tommorrow at Crows Nest in Sydney - cost $532.75 (to be precise) minus the Medicare rebate because I had a referral from an OS this time (following a post-op review). Do they just tack the Medicare rebate on top of the "cash price"?
Does anyone know where the cheapest MRI scans in Sydney are?
Can anyone please help me and tell me is there any place in Melbourne where one can have an MRI without a referral? Iam truly most grateful if you could please help me. I have been having abnormal bleeding in the past two months that lasts up to 14 weeks. 3D ultrasound has reveald certain abnormalities but is inconclusive. Most GPs did not order relevant blood tests or other tests other than refer me to a gyneacologist who was keen on invasive methods of diagnosing such as laparoscopy and hysteroscopy. Most doctors agree that MRI is a superior diagnostic tool, more specific and better than invasive methods especially in soft tissues diagnostics but all look almost afraid to give a referral because they say it's expensive and the govt gave them certain instructions. Gyno specialists prefer to take care of own pockets by booking hysteroscopies and laparoscopies. They do not mind advising that a hysteroscopy would cost me up to $400 and a laparoscopy additional couple of hundreds yet at the mention of MRI they say "oh, it's too expensive" and I am happy to pay the cost. When I explained that I accept to pay the full price/cost of MRI and would wish to have an MRI done before any surgical procedure, especially when MRI is better for diagnosing soft tissue problems, gyneacologists again stayed reluctant. They say they have to exploit other procedures first. "Have to"? Why do they have to when they can exploit the MRI first and at my own expense? To have a hysteroscopy, a colposcopy and laparoscopy done, my cost is three times the cost of MRI, my body is subjected to three invasive procedures and with far more risk,but I am against the bureaucratic wall. I called the Health Services Comissioner and Health Insurance Commissioner, both said I should be able to have an MRI done if I pay in full even without a referral and that I should just explain the situation to a radiologist. When I tried, those that I spoke to were evasive saying they need some cover so they would need a referral and others would not even come to the phone saying they do not talk to patients - only doctors. I contacted my local MP and she passes the buck back to doctors. If you have been in a similar situation or have an advice, please help. Many Thanks!
Here is a list of some Melbourne MRI scanners:
Mercy Private Hospital or Royal Melbourne Hospital (At the royal parade) or Central Melbourne Medical Imaging @ Fitzroy.
Hope that helps.
City X-ray 139 Macquarie St Sydney ph 92315133 now have an MRI scan (non-Medicare rebate) for $225, which is pretty competitive price. Sydney non-Medicare scanners are generally charging $200 (at best)-$300 or higher. I hear that in Melbourne it is pretty flat $250 at most places.
Many thanks for your help Nicholas. I really appreciate it. Thanks again.
I had a MRI scan done at the National diagnositic and imaging centre at the Deakin Specialist centre and after a referral from my sports doctor, Dr May it still cost me $300. Because she was not a specialist, I was not covered under Medicare.
I'm only aware that if an orthopaedic surgeon refers you to have a MRI then you can claim it through medicare but the costs of getting a referral to see an ortho and the referring doctor add up to the equivalent cost of just going to get it done.
I think that it is ridiculous that it is so expensive especially with MRI scans that the accuracy depends a great deal on the experience of the technician who is doing the scan.
If you are concerned about the pricing of MRI scans and how Sports physicians can not be covered under Medicare, why not write to the College of Sports physicians?
The ACSP have been applying to the Australian government for 15 years to get specialty recognition, including for the last 8 years when MRI scans have been funded under Medicare. The health department's view is that the specialty status for sports medicine is still "under review". The latest update on the specialty status is at:
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