How to access and claim on telehealth appointments
We answer some of the biggest questions about telehealth
COVID-19 changed the way many of us work, live and stay healthy. As part of nib’s member support during the pandemic, we introduced coverage for telehealth appointments for services including physiotherapy, dietetics and psychology.
More than 2,500 members accessed these telehealth services in the first year and because of the positive response, we’ve made telehealth services a permanent fixture to the benefits available for eligible nib members.
Keen to find out more? We’ve answered some of the biggest questions you might have about telehealth and claiming on your nib policy.
What is telehealth?
Telehealth is a virtual consultation that occurs via phone or video conferencing, instead of a traditional in-clinic consultation. In the past, access to telehealth has been limited, but nib has offered the technology as an option to help our members in remote areas access healthcare, as well as to help members recover and rehabilitate after a hospital procedure in their own home using our Clinical Partners program.
Now this telehealth technology is making health even more accessible - you can avoid the struggles that often come with driving to a clinic, like traffic and parking, and simply enjoy the comfort of getting your health needs met while wearing your favourite trackie-dacks.
Some doctors, specialists and allied health professionals are now offering telehealth consultations, so you can still have your regular appointments and receive the support you need for your health concerns without physically attending a clinic.
How do I use telehealth?
One of the best parts of telehealth is that you probably already have all the equipment you need to use it! Depending on your health practitioner, you may be requested to use video calling (through Skype, FaceTime or another program like GPConsults that nib has helped support for our International members1 – some may even offer to do the consult over a standard phone call).
It’s a good idea to check in with your healthcare professional before the appointment to make sure you’re all set up and familiar with the program they recommend.
Australian residents: Can I use my nib private health insurance benefits to claim on telehealth appointments?
Are you an nib member? You can now use telehealth for your next GP appointment. Whether you need a medical certificate, prescription, pathology or radiology request or just general health advice, you can see a GP at a time that suits you – all you need is your phone, tablet or computer.
nib members (including GreenPass) receive exclusive pricing and capped booking fees as well as the comfort knowing you’ll receive the best care and advice with an Australian-based team of doctors specialised in telehealth consults.
nib members who carry a level of Extras cover which pays benefits for psychology, physiotherapy, dietetics, speech pathology, occupational therapy, exercise physiology and podiatry, and hospital cover for rehabilitation care, can use their cover to claim on appropriate treatment via telehealth appointments2.
For more information and a list of FAQs, head to our page telehealth and your cover.
International students: Can I use my nib cover to claim telehealth appointments?
If you’re an international student, you can access telehealth using the nib App and it will be billed to nib directly for the telehealth appointment. So, whether you need a medical certificate, a prescription, or even just a consult, you have everything you need to make an appointment with your GP in the palm of your hand. Alternatively, you can organise a telehealth consultation directly with your GP – and if you receive a bill for your appointment, you can submit a claim through your nib app.
International workers: Can I use my nib cover to claim telehealth appointments?
We want international workers to stay as healthy as possible, so for health services that you’re covered for as part of your policy, you’ll also be able to claim benefits on telehealth appointments3.
Telehealth consultations are offered only when it is clinically appropriate, so not all providers will make it available to all patients. We recommend giving your health professional a call to check before making an appointment. For more information, check out our page, telehealth and your cover.
How do I know whether my practitioner offers telehealth consultations?
You can use nib’s find a provider tool to search for certain practitioners who offer telehealth. Alternatively, contact your doctor, specialist or allied health practitioner directly to ask whether they provide telehealth consultations; they’ll also be able to advise if your condition is appropriate for a telehealth consultation. The important thing to remember is that a telehealth consultation may not be recommended for everyone and there are times when it’s essential you go into a medical clinic to see your healthcare professional for a face-to-face consultation.
How do I claim benefits for my telehealth appointment?
Claiming nib benefits on your eligible telehealth appointment is easy and the quickest way to do it is by using the nib app or member account on your computer, phone or tablet. Your health practitioner should send you a receipt for your consultation (likely via email). Simply upload this receipt and submit it. For more on claiming, check out our page: How to make a claim.
1Members with international student or international worker cover may access and claim on GP consultations by telehealth (provided your cover includes GP visits) via GP Consults in the nib App.
2Services include psychology, physiotherapy, dietetics, speech pathology, occupational therapy, exercise physiology and podiatry, and hospital cover for rehabilitation care. This is subject to your chosen level of cover, policy exclusions, waiting periods and limits. Only individual telehealth consultations are covered, groups and classes are currently not funded for telehealth.
3nib will cover appropriate treatment using telehealth for eligible members. This is subject to your chosen level of cover, policy exclusions, waiting periods and limits. Only individual telehealth consultations are covered, groups and classes are currently not funded for telehealth.