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The Healthy Kids Check may be completed under MBS Items 701 (brief), 703 (standard), 705 (long) or 707 (prolonged), depending on the length of the consultation as determined by the complexity of the patient’s presentation.
This fact sheet applies to a Healthy Kids Check provided by a medical practitioner. If a practice nurse or registered Aboriginal health worker undertakes the Healthy Kids Check on behalf of a medical practitioner, MBS item 10986 may be claimed (refer to the Fact Sheet for Item 10986).
The aim of the Healthy Kids Check is to improve the health and well-being of Australian children. The Healthy Kids Check promotes early detection of lifestyle risk factors, delayed development and illness, and provides the opportunity to introduce guidance for healthy lifestyles and early intervention strategies.
The Healthy Kids Check is to be delivered in conjunction with the four year old immunisation. In some states and territories, the four year old immunisation may be provided at an earlier or later age. Children receiving this earlier or later immunisation will be eligible for the Healthy Kids Check if they are over the age of three years and under the age of five years.
Components of the Healthy Kids Check
The Healthy Kids Check is an assessment of a child’s physical health, general well-being and development, with the purpose of initiating medical interventions as appropriate. It must include:
- information collection, including taking a patient history and undertaking or arranging examinations and investigations as required;
- making an overall assessment of the child;
- recommending appropriate interventions;
- providing advice and information to the child’s parent(s) or carer;
- keeping a record of the health assessment, and offering the child’s parent(s) or carer a written report about the health assessment, with recommendations about matters covered by the health assessment; and
- updating any relevant records, such as a parent-held child health record.
Examinations and assessments must include:
- height and weight (plot and interpret growth curve and calculate BMI);
- oral health (teeth and gums);
- toileting; and
A registered Aboriginal health worker or practice nurse can assist the medical practitioner in the information collection stage of the Healthy Kids Check and by providing the child’s parent(s) or carer with information about any recommended interventions, at the direction of the medical practitioner.
The medical practitioner, practice nurse or registered Aboriginal health worker must note if a copy of the Get Set 4 Life – habits for healthy kids guide has been provided to the child’s parent(s) or carer, and record evidence that the immunisation for a 4 year old child has been provided.
Restrictions on providing the Healthy Kids Check
The Healthy Kids Check may only be claimed by a medical practitioner (including a general practitioner but not including a specialist or consultant physician).
The Healthy Kids Check may only be provided once to an eligible child, and only if he or she has not already received MBS Item 10986 (Healthy Kids Check provided by a practice nurse or registered Aboriginal health worker). A Medicare rebate is payable only after both the assessment has been undertaken and four year old immunisation delivered.
Medical practitioners should not conduct a separate consultation in conjunction with a Healthy Kids Check unless it is a consultation associated with the four year old immunisation or it is clinically necessary (ie. the patient has an acute problem that needs to be managed separately from the assessment).
In circumstances where a parent/guardian chooses not to immunise their child, the Healthy Kids Check cannot be provided as a service for which an MBS rebate may be claimed. A medical practitioner may choose to provide a service that mirrors the Healthy Kids Check, but that service would not be regarded as a Healthy Kids Check for the purpose of Medicare billing.
MBS Items 10993 (immunisation by practice nurse) and 10988 (immunisation by registered Aboriginal health worker) can be claimed in conjunction with the Healthy Kids Check, provided the conditions of item 10993 and 10988 are satisfied.
MBS Items 10990 or 10991 (bulk billing incentives) can be claimed in conjunction with the Healthy Kids Check.
Guidelines and Resources
For more detailed information about item descriptors and explanatory notes visit the Department of Health and Ageing website at MBS Online
For more general information about the MBS items visit the Department of Health and Ageing website at the MBS Primary Care Items page
or phone the Medicare Australia provider enquiry line on 132 150.
Medical practitioners are encouraged to utilise relevant guidelines and resources, such as: