Education guide - Health assessments and your record keeping responsibilities

Information about health assessments and your record keeping responsibilities for Medicare items 224 to 227, 701 to 707, 228 and 715.

Using health assessments

A health assessment is the evaluation of a patient’s health and wellbeing. Eligible practitioners use it to help decide if a patient needs:

  • preventive health care
  • education to improve their health and wellbeing.

Make sure you read the relevant Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) item descriptions and explanatory notes at MBS Online.

Health assessment items

The table below shows information for claiming health assessment items.

Item numbers Item name Item description Time requirements
224, 701 Brief health assessment A simple health assessment 30 minutes or less
225, 703 Standard health assessment An assessment for when the patient needs more than a brief assessment, but doesn’t have complex health issues More than 30 but less than 45 minutes
226, 705 Long health assessment An extensive assessment for when the patient has complex health issues More than 45 but less than 60 minutes
227, 707 Prolonged health assessment A complex assessment of a patient with significant, long-term health needs managed through a comprehensive preventative healthcare plan 60 or more minutes
228, 715 Health assessment A health assessments for patients of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent No time requirements but must meet MBS criteria

Patient eligibility

The table below shows patient eligibility requirements for health assessment items and how frequently you can claim the items.

Who is eligible for item 224, 225, 226, 227, 701, 703, 705 or 707 How frequently they can access the service
People 40 to 49 years of age with a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes as determined by the Australian Type 2 Diabetes Risk Assessment Tool Once every 3 years
People 45 to 49 years of age who are at risk of developing a chronic disease Once
People 75 years of age and older Annually
Permanent residents of residential aged care facilities Annually
People with an intellectual disability Annually
Refugees and other humanitarian entrants Once
Former serving members of the Australian Defence Force Once
Who is eligible for item 228 or 715 How frequently they can access the service
Patients of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent Once every 9 months

Record keeping obligations

All health professionals must keep up-to-date records when they claim MBS items for services that get a Medicare benefit. They need to complete the records at the time of service, or as soon as possible afterwards. The records should:

  • clearly identify the patient’s name
  • have a separate entry for the health assessment
  • include the date they provided or began the service
  • have information about the health assessment, including outcomes and recommendations
  • be clear so other health professionals can read the health assessment record and continue the patient’s ongoing care
  • be current and up-to-date
  • be in paper or electronic form.

Make sure you:

  • offer the patient a copy of the health assessment, including recommendations
  • retain patient records until there is no risk of litigation arising from the patient’s treatment. This depends on medical record legislation and statutory limitation periods in your state or territory.

The Privacy Act 1988 covers information about medical records.

Your professional peak body can give you more advice about record keeping requirements.

More information

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Contact us for MBS item interpretation.

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Page last updated: 4 November 2019