Rural bulk-billing incentives to move to Modified Monash Model

17 May 2018

The 2018/19 Federal Budget saw the Government decide to update the geographic eligibility criteria for the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) bulk billing item 10991, adopting the Modified Monash Model (MMM) from 1 July 2019. This will replace the current Rural, Remote and Metropolitan Areas (RRMA) classification system.

From 1 July 2019 eligible areas for MBS item 10991 will be those that fall into MMM remoteness classification 2–7. Any GPs that lose access to 10991 under the change will be able to bill MBS item 10990 instead.

The AMA has strongly supported the MMM as being the most appropriate measure of rurality, with RRMA not having been updated since 1991.

In previous submissions on the adoption of MMM the AMA has consistently argued that implementation arrangements should allow for a reasonable transition period and, in this regard, the Government has agreed to delay this change for over 12 months to give practices time to adjust.