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You and your General Practitioner

What do GPs do for young adults?

Your General Practitioner (GP) may also be known as a local or family doctor. You can see your GP for any health concern, including physical and mental health. Your GP can help you with simple things like skin conditions or a head cold, but will also be able to manage serious and chronic health conditions. You can also seek assistance for other concerns such as study pressure, stress or mental illness.

You could choose to visit your GP with your parents / caregiver or you can go alone. 

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Primary care

Your GP will become an important member of your health care team. They will be your primary healthcare provider.

  • Your GP will be the first person you contact when you’re unwell
  • You usually see your GP before going to an emergency department
  • You can call the 1300 health (13 43 25 84) hotline for health advice 
  • Keep your GP in the loop
  • We will write to your GP after your appointments and if you are admitted to our young adult ward

Information sharing

If you have transitioned from a children’s hospital, your GP will get a summary of care when you leave.

If your GP didn’t get a copy you can:

  • Ask your children’s hospital to send one to your GP
  • Ask your parents/carer to help with this if you need
  • Ask your team at the Mater to help with this if you need

My health record

My health record is a secure online summary of your health information. You can control what goes into it, and who is allowed to access it.

You can choose to share your health information with your doctors, hospitals and other healthcare providers.

Have an account already

If you have a my health record account, it would be beneficial for your GP to have access to see your medical history, so they can view your health history and best look after you in the future.

Don’t have an account yet

If you don’t have a my health record account, you can sign up online here.

Here are some tips:

  • Information online is kept confidential
  • You are in charge of who has access to your information online
  • Your privacy is secure, please see FAQs on privacy
  • Remember to register your GP

Referrals

Every year you will need a new referral from your GP to your adult hospital specialist.you-and-your-GP-2-(2).jpg

Please tell us if you change

  • your name and address
  • your GP

Let us know your GP’s details

  • Save your GP’s name and phone number to your phone or
  • Get your GP’s business card next time you’re there

Medicare card

You can get your own Medicare card or a copy of your family card when you are 15.

With a Medicare card you can receive free or cheaper health services from doctors, specialists, optometrists and even some prescription medications.

Please discuss this with your parents/care givers.

For information visit
https://www.humanservices.gov.au/customer/subjects/young-people-becoming-independent

You can:

  • Call Medicare on 13 20 11
  • Call Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Access Line 1800 556 955
  • Visit your local Medicare Office

For an application form visit
https://www.humanservices.gov.au/customer/forms/ms011

Health Care Card

A health care card can give you access to cheaper prescription medications and usually your doctor will bulk bill your visit.

To check you eligibility for a health care card visit: https://www.humanservices.gov.au/customer/services/centrelink/health-care-card

Bulk billing

Bulk billing is when your doctor accepts the Medicare benefit as full payment for service. This means you don’t pay money towards your doctor visit.  If you do pay more money, this is called a ‘gap’. 

Usually a doctor will offer bulk billing to young people under 16, those on a health care card.

Try to remember to ask your doctor:

  • If you can be bulk billed and
  • Tell them you if you have a health care card

Confidentiality

If you are over 14 years, you are able to see a doctor or health worker confidentially and make decisions about your own health if your doctors think you are mature enough.

If you have your own Medicare card (not a duplicate), then your parents will not have access to any of your Medicare records

Often the doctor will:

  • encourage a young person to keep your parent/carer in the loop
  • notify your parents/carer if you are risk of significant harm

Chronic Disease Management  (CDM)

If you have a chronic health condition/disability, you may be eligible for a GP Management Plan (GPMP) and Team Care Arrangements (TCAs). This provides you with a maximum of 5 allied health visits for your chronic condition each calendar year to a Medicare registered provider. 

Some providers charge more than the Medicare benefit fee.

  • Please check with the allied health provider if they charge any ‘out of pocket’ expenses (also called a gap), so you can be prepared

Mental health plan

Your GP can work with you to develop a Mental Health Plan so you can access support from Medicare registered allied health professionals, such as psychologists, occupational therapists and social workers.

  • Book a long appointment with your GP for a Mental Health Plan
  • Check if there will be any ‘out of pocket’ (also called a gap) expenses
Mater acknowledges consumer consultation in the development of this patient information.
Mater Doc Num: PI-CLN-420097
Last modified 06/7/2017.
Consumers were consulted in the development of this patient information.
Last consumer engagement date: 22/6/2017
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