Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

beginning of content

Bulk billing for medical services

2-minute read

When you access medical services, you can be bulk billed or given a patient account for those services. Bulk billing is when your doctor bills Medicare directly and accepts the Medicare benefit as full payment for their service. This means you do not have any out-of-pocket expenses.

A patient account is when your doctor charges you a fee and you claim the appropriate portion of the schedule fee back through Medicare. The difference between the total account and your Medicare refund is called a 'gap payment' . If you need to see a doctor, you can ask if they bulk bill, and if they don't you can ask about the expected gap payment.

More information on bulk billing and patient accounts can be found at the Department of Human Services bulk billing page.

The benefits are paid straight into your bank account. You can claim your Medicare benefit in a number of ways such as:

  • at your doctor's office
  • through your Medicare Online account
  • via the Express Plus mobile app
  • by mail

These options are explained at the Department of Human Services website.

There are other services that are related to Medicare, such as the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register and the Australian Organ Donor Register. A list of all Medicare services can be viewed at the: Department of Human Services Medicare Services page.

For all Medicare general enquiries phone 132 011 (24hrs a day, 7 days a week). For further contact information go to the Department of Human Services website.

Last reviewed: January 2018

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Top results

Medicare Bulk Billing - Australian Government Department of Human Services

Where the doctor bills Medicare directly for a medical or allied health service that you get.

Read more on Medicare website

The medical system : Bulk billing and medicare: Dr Joe Kosterich | myVMC

The medical system can be a little bit of a mystery to people, especially if, like most of us, they are not involved with it all the time.

Read more on myVMC – Virtual Medical Centre website

Medicare claiming - Australian Government Department of Human Services

If youve paid or been billed for medical costs, there are ways to claim your Medicare benefit.

Read more on Medicare website

Medicare services - Australian Government Department of Human Services

Our payments and services can help you, or someone you care for, use health care services or buy prescription medicines.

Read more on Centrelink website

Fees in your Health Care

Information on the various fees and costs associated with Health Care

Read more on NSW Health Care Complaints Commission website

Australian health system: how it works -

Australia's healthcare system - find out how it works, which health services are funded by the governments and which services are privately funded.

Read more on myDr website

Getting help from a general practitioner (GP)

Read more on headspace website

Seeing a doctor or general practitioner (GP) - Better Health Channel

Your local doctor or general practitioner (GP) is your first point of call for non-emergency and preventative medical care during clinic hours.

Read more on Better Health Channel website

Dental benefits for kids (CDBS)

The Australian Government's Child Dental Benefits Schedule (CDBS) helps cover the cost of your child's visiting the dentist. Learn more here.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Support for non parent carers - Australian Government Department of Human Services

We provide support to grandparents, legal guardians and other family members who provide full time care for a child.

Read more on Centrelink website

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice and information you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo