Choosing a private hospital for delivery means choosing private care for your newborn. At or after birth, your baby will be referred to a paediatrician. This specialist doctor will check and monitor your baby's health during their stay.
Many families prefer to have (or start) continuity of care with a preferred paediatrician.
You may be hoping to have the same paediatrician who cared for your previous baby or still cares for your children, when organising admission for the birth of a younger sibling.
Or you may be hoping to try a paediatrician who has been recommended to you by friends or family.
Your obstetrician will be happy to organise referral to your preferred paediatrician as long as they are accredited to care for neonates at your chosen hospital and they are able to accept your baby's referral at that time.
- Your private hospital has a number of accredited paediatricians to ensure choice and safe levels of paediatric coverage for their newborns.
- Let your obstetrician or the midwives know your preferences regarding your paediatrician.
- If you are having a Caesarian delivery, you can ask that your obstetrician book your preferred paediatrician for the delivery when possible.
- If your preferred paediatrician is not available for all or part of your neonate's care, the allocated doctor will be happy to refer your baby to your preferred paediatrician, when possible, or for follow-up care.
Paediatrics at Burnside's neonatal paediatricians
Our paediatricians care for newborns at Burnside War Memorial Hospital and Calvary North Adelaide Hospital. They will visit and be on call around the clock to supervise each baby in their care. Newborns are checked, sometimes very briefly, at least most days of their hospital stay. Each paediatrician also stays in touch with the midwives about progress and any issues. Your baby's doctor will talk with you about any issues or your questions or worries, especially when they visit your baby after birth and closer to discharge for more thorough checks and to explain your baby's follow-up care. Your midwives will also be happy to relay any questions or concerns to your paediatrician.
Your paediatrician then provides follow-up care, if needed, and offers an important review of your baby's progress at 6 to 8 weeks of age. Your baby's continuity of care is supported and, if necessary, our neonatal specialists can provide back-up for each other, if needed.
The invoice for your paediatrician's hospital care of your baby is posted after you go home. We include an important package of information about your account as we know neonatal billing is a bit confusing.
We request you pay the whole invoice amount and allow us to lodge a claim with Medicare on your behalf for any applicable Medicare rebates (standard or Safety Net) once we have receipted your payment.
Rebates are claimed and paid in one quick step normally within 24 hours of payment to greatly reduce out-of-pocket costs (your final gap).
account settlement can be managed to avoid any difficulty
Any worries about neonatal accounts can be effectively addressed by ensuring your child is promptly enrolled with Medicare (visiting Medicare is the quickest way to enrol your baby). We can advise on how to reduce the wait for rebates to as little as a few hours. An itemized payment plan can help keep the size of the outlay for account settlement manageable.
the invoice amount relates to the gap and to the amount of care needed in the hospital stay
The gap component of the account: The out-of-pocket cost or 'gap' (after standard Medicare rebates) is capped and relates to the nature of your paediatrician's intial attendance . The highest extra cost is incurred if your baby needs an urgent initial attendance. Planned attendance at a caesarian delivery involves more cost, and a higher gap, than for normal attendance after vaginal delivery.
The care needs of your baby: The amount of the invoice will also relate to the length of your baby's hospital stay and any extra care and supervision baby needed. But your gap will be the same whether baby needed a lot or a little care.
Your obstetrician will have advised you generally about these fees but they will not have been included in the specific quotes provided by the hospital or your obstetrician for mother's care as our billing is separate.
If you are planning for baby's birth, we recommend you contact our rooms to get an understanding of paediatric billing and the out-of-pocket costs of care.
And after your newborns' arrival, we will welcome calls to clarify questions about your invoice.
Neonatal billing can be confusing but we are happy to help.
Our billing policy is structured to ensure that we can continue to offer the quality care so many of our families appreciate, affordably, whilst also ensuring that costs are covered.
To do as soon as possible:
1.Medicare Safety Net Scheme: Make sure your family, including your baby, is registered for this scheme.
Medicare advises if all family members are on the same Medicare card, you still need to register. You only register once. To register your family/child for the Medicare Safety Net: -go to https://www.humanservices.gov.au/individuals/services/medicare/medicare-safety-net to download a Medicare Safety Net couples and families registration and amendment form,
or call the Medicare general enquiries line
2. Medicare for baby: Enrol your newborn as soon as possible, preferably in the first week, after birth by:
- Lodging forms- it can take a number of weeks to process the forms given to you in hospital
- Visiting your nearest Medicare- take the Newborn Declaration or Birth Certificate and obtain a temporary new Medicare card and baby's enrolment at the counter. l
Access to Medicare rebates will make all the difference in managing payment of your neonatal care invoice.
3. Private Health Fund cover for newborn: notify your fund, ideally in baby's first week.
This is especially important if you baby was admitted to the hospital nursery during their stay.
4. Complete our Newborn Registration Form: If your newborn has been referred to one of our paediatricians.