Can I Get Medicare Rebates on IVF Costs?

Blog

8 February 2021

Choosing the right fertility treatments is important when trying to conceive. For many, IVF is their only chance, but with it comes IVF fees, which can place a strain on some families. Thankfully, there is a Medicare rebate available to help with the IVF costs, including the Medicare Safety Net Threshold which provides additional rebates for families who have reached their threshold. In this article, we go through everything you need to know about Medicare rebates associated with IVF, making the financial side of conceiving that longed-for bundle of joy less of a burden.

How Much Does IVF Cost In Australia?

IVF fees in Australia can vary from provider to provider. However, it isn’t just the IVF cost you need to factor in. There are other fees associated with your fertility treatments. These may include:

  • Consultations with your fertility specialist
  • Any additional testing you may require
  • Counselling
  • Hospital and anaesthetic fees
  • Cost of medications
  • Genetic screening
  • IVF cost for each cycle
  • Ongoing storage fees for frozen eggs, sperm or embryos

The cost of one IVF cycle includes a series of procedures. AT Monash IVF, a cycle can cost in the range of $8,567-$8,817. Mature eggs are retrieved from the ovaries and then fertilised by sperm in a laboratory. This fertilised egg is then transferred into the uterus. One IVF cycle takes about three weeks.

At Monash the quoted fee includes everything except medication costs, anaesthetic cost and out of pocket hospital fees and storage fees.

Are You Eligible For The Medicare Rebate?

Medicare provides access to rebates to help cover the cost of a number of different fertility treatments. You can enrol in Medicare if you live in Australia and you’re either:

  • An Australian citizen
  • A New Zealand citizen
  • An Australian permanent resident
  • Applying for permanent residency
  • A temporary resident covered by a ministerial order

To ensure you are eligible for Medicare rebates on IVF costs, you need a referral from your GP or specialist gynaecologist/obstetrician. It is worth noting that a referral from your GP lasts for 12 months, whereas one from your specialist will only last 3 months.

What your referral needs to detail:

  • Your name and your partner’s name (if applicable)
  • Your chosen Fertility Specialist, e.g. Dr. Smith or the name of your chosen ART provider, e.g. Monash IVF

What Does The Rebate Cover?

The Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) provides a rebate for out-of-pocket costs for out-of-pocket services – such as your specialist appointments. If you have private health insurance, you could save even more in the process.

Before you go ahead with IVF, it’s important to work out what the costs involved are. You can talk to your provider and find out:

  • The different costs for appointments and IVF cycles
  • What is covered by Medicare
  • What is covered by insurance (if you have any)
  • Additional costs you are required to pay, including medications, hospital fees and ongoing storage
  • The gap you will have to pay

The gap will be different for everybody, depending on what provider you choose to go through and what type of private cover (if any) you have.

What Is The Medicare Safety Net?

Beyond the rebate, Medicare also offers a Safety Net to help cover IVF fees. The Medicare Safety Net Threshold provides an additional rebate for those with costs that go over the annual threshold.

This scheme is based on a calendar year and is revised annually. For 2021 the threshold was $2,184.30. It applies to all out-of-pocket expenses that you might incur out of the hospital.

This rebate is capped for IVF, which means there is a limit to how much you can receive. It is not means-tested, and there is no restriction on the number of IVF cycles you can go through each year.

If you are wondering whether you have reached your Medicare Safety Net and whether or not you are eligible for further rebate, then give Medicare a call on 132 011.

Starting A Family

Have any questions about IVF costs? Book a free nurse chat for personalised guidance about your fertility treatment options and IVF costs. With Monash IVF, you will be provided with a financial quote prior to the commencement of your cycle. Our specialists will sit with you and explain all costs associated with your treatment so that you don’t get surprised with hidden fees along the way.

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