The Commonwealth Government has introduced new Medicare items to cover comprehensive geriatric assessment and management for Australians aged 65 and over.
The new measures are expected to cost $15 million over four years and will be available for patients who have been referred by a GP to a geriatric specialist.
Areas that the assessments address will include cognition, incontinence and falls – all of which often lead to hospital stays or premature admission to aged care facilities.
The Government says the new items will improve the quality and accessibility of appropriate medical care for seniors.
“This new measure will provide comprehensive ongoing care for older Australians. It provides more support to geriatricians who are best placed to manage the health of elderly people with serious health problems,” said the Minister for Ageing, Christopher Pyne.