Meet the speaker: Professor Julie Quinlivan

6 Oct 2021

Starting a Private Practive


Doctors planning a move into private practice will be able to learn the intricacies of dealing with the Medicare system at the Starting or Enhancing a Private Practice Seminar on 13 November.

Director of the Professional Services Review Professor Julie Quinlivan will be a keynote speaker at the event. The Professional Services Review (PSR) is an Independent Statutory Agency responsible for regulation of Medicare and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

Prof Quinlivan, an obstetrician and gynaecologist, who currently works in private practice said the webinar would be particularly useful to doctors starting out in private practice.

“I am going to focus on Medicare and also prescribing practices,” Prof Quinlivan said.

“I’ll be giving advice including what sort of records you need to keep and the regular updates you should do.”

Prof Quinlivan hopes to also answer questions from participants during the seminar and will offer advice on how to find useful online resources.

“There are plenty of online courses that doctors can do, some only take about ten minutes and you can pick ones which are relevant to your specialty,” she said.

Prof Quinlivan said the webinar would appeal to a wide audience of doctors, and in particular those who have been working in the public hospital system and were now moving into private practice.

“Those doctors have not had to bill Medicare in the past or prescribe under the PBS before,” she said.

“It’s not something that is really taught in Medical School, and it will benefit doctors who did not do their training in Australia and are not familiar with the system.”

She said on the whole doctors wanted to do the right thing and wanted to know how to avoid making errors and staying out of trouble.

“Most people throughout their career are unlikely to get in trouble with Medicare,” she said.

“I want to reassure doctors about what is normal in the system and that if they receive a letter or are audited it doesn’t necessarily mean they have done something wrong, it is just all part of the normal checks and balances.

“Realistically only one in 2,000 doctors ends up before the Professional Service Review. There can be genuine errors and people need to know the process of how to deal with those.

“I want to reassure doctors and give them the tools that help them comfortably deal with the system and give them some simple strategies for that.

“If you have worked your whole career in the public hospital sector, you have not had to think about what an item number is for a particular medication and whether it is prescribed through the PBS or privately.

“Realistically there are probably only 20 item numbers that doctors deal with for 90 per cent of their work.”

The Starting or Enhancing a Private Practice Seminar is designed for members wanting to start their own private practice, or existing practice owners who wish to receive the latest information on how to make their practice even better.

Register now

Published: 6 Oct 2021