Guaranteeing Medicare – Medicare Benefits Schedule – new and amended listings

This measure amends the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) to maintain clinically appropriate and cost-effective subsidised medical services, so that patients can receive best practice care from doctors and other health professionals.

Page last updated: 09 May 2017

PDF version: Guaranteeing Medicare – Medicare Benefits Schedule – new and amended listings (PDF 118 KB)

Why is this important?

This measure implements recommendations from the Medical Services Advisory Committee (MSAC). This helps ensure the viability of the MBS and gives patients access to evidence-based clinically relevant treatment.

The listings include:

  • a new cardiac MBS service to lower the risk of stroke for patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation who are unable to take blood-thinning medications;
  • a new mechanical thrombectomy MBS service for the treatment of acute ischaemic stroke due to a large vessel occlusion, as identified by diagnostic imaging;
  • a new Vagus Nerve Stimulation therapy MBS service to reduce the frequency of epileptic seizures in patients with medication resistant epilepsy who suffer ongoing severe and frequent seizures, and are unsuitable for, don’t want, or have failed, surgery;
  • a new microwave tissue ablation MBS service for thermal ablative treatment of primary liver tumours;
  • amendment to the combined positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) MBS item for lymphoma to include patients suffering from indolent non-Hodgkin lymphoma; and
  • removal of three sacral nerve items from the MBS.

All MBS changes are supported by the MSAC as safe, clinically appropriate and cost-effective amendments which benefit patients.

Who will benefit?

Patients will benefit from these new services being available on the MBS and can be sure the MBS continues to fund quality health care and reflect clinically appropriate practice.

New and amended listings on the MBS help the medical profession to provide best practice care for their patients.

How much will this cost?

This measure will cost $16.4 million from 2017–18 to 2020–21.

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