Important update regarding COVID operations for the next 2 months
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you! All the staff at Alevia, wish you good health and happiness in the coming year.
We are off to a difficult start (again) in 2022 with another COVID outbreak – this time Omicron – which thankfully, is a milder form of the disease, but unfortunately, much more infectious. Case numbers are certainly skyrocketing at the moment, and cases expected to peak in late Jan, early Feb and then subside by late Feb, early March.
As always, at Alevia, your safety is our number one priority. And we know that Medical centres are places of higher risk – patients are often more vulnerable due to other health conditions, and so we will do things differently from shops and restaurants, which of course are remaining open. So now, as with every other step of the pandemic, we will flex and respond to the changing environment that we are facing to keep you safe, with a return to consulting predominantly via telehealth, which is likely to persist for the next 2 months whilst this wave passes.
We are also working to bring you care within the confines of the ever changing Medicare rules and exemptions.
During the lockdowns of 2020 and 2021, there were some sensible exemptions to the Medicare 12 month rule – which is that you are able to do telehealth with your GP, if you have seen someone at the practice in the last 12 months. Unfortunately, though now we have much higher case numbers than in either 2020 or 2021, there are no active hotspots as defined by the commonwealth government at present.
What does this mean for you?
For the next 2 months or so, we will be reverting to telehealth appointments for the majority of your care.
The only exemptions will be for new patients and those needing to fulfil the 12 month criteria – in which case we will arrange for you to see one of our doctors for a brief 5 mins bulk billed face to face appointment, at any one of our Alevia site across Melbourne. This will allow you to be eligible for a Medicare rebate for your consultation.
If you currently have a face to face appointment booked with us then you can expect to receive a text message in the coming days
- All body composition or short appointments will automatically be changed to phone appointments (please call us if you’d like to do that as a video appointment or reschedule your appointment)
- All long appointments will be converted to a video appointment (as Medicare only provides rebates for long video appointments, not long phone appts). Again please call us if you’d like to reschedule that appointment.
The good news is, we are well set up to provide you care via telehealth with our Alevia app, e-scripts and email pathology requests, so you can still continue your weight loss journey with the support of your Alevia doctor. We know it is not the same as face to face and we look forward to that time that you can return (again) to our rooms.
Until then, stay safe, stay well, get your COVID 3rd dose and please reach out to us if you have any questions or need any support.
Dr Catherine Bacus