The MyHealthyCommunities website is closing on 30 June 2019

Don’t worry – you can still find the latest information about your local area on the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s (AIHW)External link, opens in a new window.[https://aihw.gov.au] website, along with many more reports and data on a range of health and welfare topics.

Visit the Healthy community indicatorsExternal link, opens in a new window.[https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports-data/indicators/healthy-community-indicators] page to use the new interactive tool to explore health topics including health risk factors, cancer, expenditure, and different population groups in your Primary Health Network (PHN) area.

In some cases, the way you find information has changed. If you need help finding anything, please contactExternal link, opens in a new window.[https://www.aihw.gov.au/contact-us] the AIHW.

Once the MyHealthyCommunities website closes, you will be able to access an archived version through TroveExternal link, opens in a new window.[https://trove.nla.gov.au/], the National Library of Australia’sExternal link, opens in a new window.[https://www.nla.gov.au/] web archive. Please note the interactive content will not work in the archived version.

Healthy Communities: Patients' out-of-pocket spending on Medicare services, 2016–17 - Report - Factors that affect out-of-pocket costs

Healthy Communities: Patients' out-of-pocket spending on Medicare services, 2016–17

Download Report (PDF, 2.9 MB)

Factors that affect out-of-pocket costs

Local area variation in the amount that patients spend out-of-pocket on health services is influenced by a number of factors, including:

  • the type and amount of health services required to meet a patient’s needs
  • income and lifestyle, which can influence a patient’s ability to pay fees
  • the fees charged by health providers in a local area (at the discretion of the health provider and may be influenced by differences in operating costs)
  • the availability of bulk-billed services
  • differences in the availability and use of non-hospital primary and specialist services that are subsidised by Medicare (some people may use services not funded by Medicare, including allied health services or a hospital emergency department, or may be unable to get services due to other factors, such as the availability of nearby health care providers).

Variation in out-of-pocket costs and patients’ experiences of cost barriers can highlight gaps in access to affordable health services. However, if an area has high out-of-pocket costs, it does not necessarily mean that people living there have difficulty obtaining these services, as service use is also influenced by a person’s financial situation and needs. Knowledge of the local area can assist in understanding results for individual areas.

Download Report (PDF, 2.9 MB)