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Changes to knee imaging services

Last updated 29 May 2019

Changes from 1 November 2018

The Government has accepted recommendations put forward by the Medicare Benefit Schedule (MBS) Review Taskforce’s Diagnostic Imaging Clinical Committee – Knee Imaging. From 1 November 2018, the following changes to Medicare-funded knee imaging services are in effect:

  • Patients aged 50 years and over are no longer eligible for an MBS rebate for knee magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans if they are referred for one by their GP. These patients are only eligible for the knee MRI rebate if referred by a relevant non-GP specialist. For patients aged 16-49, GPs are able to request up to three knee MRI rebates per year.
  • It is no longer necessary for patients under the age of 16 to have an X-ray before an MRI scan.
  • New and amended items have been introduced for the ongoing monitoring and appropriate use of computed tomography (CT) and X-ray of the knee.

MBS Online have published an overview of new item descriptors and a Q&A relevant to these changes on their website.