HBF ARE RIPPING OFF WA CUSTOMERS, AND ITS TIME TO STOP!
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HBF (the largest health fund in WA) is ripping off customers, who are oblivious to what is happening.
HBF are refusing to pay their share if Doctors charge as little as $2 over their "schedule rates." I know its confusing, and this is what HBF relies on, as hundreds of thousands of customers have no idea what is happening.
You attend a private hospital to have your appendix removed. Its a life saving surgery, and the surgeon (who has spent over 20 years studying to get to where he is today) is called in at 4am Saturday morning to perform your operation.
It takes up to 2 hours to remove your appendix.
HBF will tell the surgeon that they will pay them $614.45. HOWEVER, in actual fact medicare is paying $334.05, and HBF pays the remaining $280.40 to the surgeon.
Lets assume the appendix is REALLY nasty, and takes the surgeon 3 hours to complete, GUESS WHAT? HBF will not pay anymore, and because the surgeon was called out at 4am, and it took 3 hours to complete, the surgeon believes that he should charge $620 for the procedure (instead of $614.45). What happens with EVERY SINGLE other health fund (including HBF patients in any state other than WA) is the health fund says "The surgeon can charge up to a $500 "Gap" to the patient, and the health fund will STILL pay the $614.45.... that is every health fund, except HBF WA. They say NOPE. because the surgeon has charged over $614.45, HBF will now only cover $445.40. Leaving the patient out of pocket $169.05 instead of what should actually be only $5.55.
I certainly don't believe surgeons are paid too much, especially after realising they study for 20 years to become surgeons, save peoples lives, and get called out at all hours of the night, in storms, hail and snow.
I recently had a plumbing emergency, and had to call a plumber after hours. I was charged $400 for one hours work. I'm not complaining, but it certainly puts it into perspective when a surgeon wants to charge a little bit over $614.45 for up to 3 hours work in the middle of the night.
HBF MUST change their system, and allow doctors to charge upto a $500 gap, without penalising the patient. They make the patient believe they are doing them a favour, but how is it fair to force the patient to be out of pocket an extra $169.05 simply because the doctor wants to charge an extra $5.55.
HBF WA needs to be in line with EVERY SINGLE health fund in Australia, INCLUDING HBF patients in every other state.
WESTERN AUSTRALIANS ARE SAYING ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! WE DONT WANT TO BE RIPPED OFF ANYMORE!!!
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