Ensuring Appropriate Use of Pulmonary Embolism and Deep Vein Thrombosis Services

The Australian Government is making changes to Medicare-funded ultrasound scanning for deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and computed tomography and nuclear medicine scans for both DVT and pulmonary embolism (PE). These changes follow recommendations from the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) Review Taskforce.

Page last updated: 15 March 2019

Ensuring Appropriate Use of Pulmonary Embolism and Deep Vein Thrombosis Services (PDF 141 KB)

What are the changes?

From 1 July 2019, changes will be made to introduce claiming restrictions to existing items for ultrasound scanning for DVT and the MBS Explanatory Notes will be amended to reference recommendations about appropriate requesting of computed tomography and nuclear medicine scans for both DVT and PE.

Why are these changes being made?

For DVT, the MBS Review Taskforce found that routine co-claiming of items for acute venous thrombosis and chronic venous disease on the same day should not occur in contemporary clinical practice. The Taskforce also recommended a reference be added to the Explanatory Notes to provide guidance about diagnosing DVT.

For PE, the Taskforce recommended a reference be added to the Explanatory Notes to help practitioners diagnose this condition.

The changes were recommended by the Taskforce following consultation with key stakeholder organisations.

The Taskforce is conducting a clinician-led review, and makes recommendations to the Government on how the MBS can be modernised to improve patient safety, support equity of access and reduce waste.

What does this mean for patients?

These changes will provide patients with more appropriate access to evidence-based, clinically relevant treatment for PE and DVT.

What does this mean for practitioners?

Requesting practitioners will need to ensure their practice aligns with the revised items, which reflect current contemporary best practice.

Practitioners affected by these changes will receive further information closer to the implementation date.

Further detail will be available on www.mbsonline.gov.au

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