For more in depth information about concessions and subsidies offered by the Queensland Government, head to the Queensland Government Smart Savings page.
Centrelink essential medical equipment payment
An electricity concession exists for the use of essential medical equipment for people with a Health Care Card or for parents of children with cystic fibrosis who have a Health Care Card. Check the eligible items list to see what you can claim, claim through Centrelink Online Services or in person at a Centrelink office. You will need your GP or specialist to complete the medical form.
Queensland Government medical cooling and heating concession
An electricity concession for people with a Health Care Card or for parents of children with cystic fibrosis who have a Health Care Card who need cooling or heating for medical reasons and have an air conditioner. Your name doesn’t need to be on the energy bill but you must be able to demonstrate that you contribute. Make sure you fill in the application in your name and then include your child Health Care Card details, and include your child in the section B - details of dependent child. Your specialist needs to then fill in the section F - other qualifying medical condition. For more information, click here.
Queensland Government gas rebates
For people with a Pensioner Concession Card there is also a gas rebate available. For more information click here.
Queensland Government electricity life support concession
If you have a Health Care Card, you can receive a rebate towards the cost of operating a home oxygen concentrator. When your oxygen concentrator is supplied by the Medical Aids Subsidy Scheme, the forms to claim the concession are provided. Click here for more information.
Queensland Government Home Energy Assistance Scheme
Assistance with your energy bill if you have had an unforeseen crisis and have a concession card or low income. For more information click here.
Access to continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) through the National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS)
To access CGM products through the NDSS, the person will need to be assessed by an authorised health professional to determine whether they meet specific eligibility criteria and to ensure that the use of CGM will help as part of their diabetes management.
The authorised health professionals who can perform these assessments include endocrinologists, credentialed diabetes educators, and other health professionals specialising in diabetes (medical doctors, paediatricians or nurse practitioners). To be eligible to participate in the CGM initiative, the person must be assessed by an authorised health professional and meet the criteria for one of the following groups (see links below):
If a person does not meet the specific clinical criteria but their health professional believes that the person does have an equivalent level of high risk/high clinical need, consideration may be given on a case-by-case basis.
In these exceptional circumstances, consideration may be given on a case-by-case basis, noting these will be:
considered by an appropriately constituted expert panel established by Diabetes Australia that will provide a recommendation to the Department of Health; and
the Department of Health will be the deciding body for all of these cases.
For more information click here.
To learn more about submitting a special consideration application, please contact the NDSS Helpline, 1300 136 588.
PBS Safety Net
The PBS Safety Net threshold is currently $1,494.90 per calendar year for general patients and $378 for concession card holders. Once you reach the safety net threshold, ask your pharmacist for a Safety Net card which will reduce the cost of medications to $6.30 per item for general patients and no cost for concession card holders. Couples and families with dependent children can combine their expenditure to meet the threshold sooner. If you go to more than one pharmacy, you can ask them for a record of your expenditure so you can combine the amounts. For more information click here.
Continence Aids Payment Scheme (CAPS)
CAPS is an Australian Government scheme that provides a payment to eligible people to assist with some of the costs of their continence products. If you have permanent and severe incontinence and you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident five years of age or older you may be eligible for CAPS. For more information click here.
Queensland Government Medical Aids Subsidy Scheme Continence Aids Assistance Scheme
Further assistance with continence aids. For more information click here.
Mental health care
Medicare can help with the cost of some mental health treatments. For more information visit this link.
Gold Coast Community Fund
People wishing to apply for a Gold Coast Community Fund Grant can do so, please visit: http://www.gccommunityfund.org/apply-for-assistance/ for further information
Queensland Government Get Started Vouchers
Vouchers are available for children aged 5 to 17 with a Health Care Card. For more information visit: https://www.qld.gov.au/recreation/sports/funding/fairplay.
Chronic Disease Management Plan for Allied Health Services
A Medicare rebate is available for a maximum of five services per patient each calendar year. It includes physiotherapy and psychology services. There will be a gap to pay depending on how much the provider charges. Ask your GP if you would like to access this program. For more information click here.
Better Access to Mental Health Care Program
A Medicare rebate for psychology services - six sessions per calendar year plus another four if you need them. You access these through your GP - book a long consultation so they can complete the assessment and referral forms. There will probably be a gap to pay depending on how much the psychologist charges. This program is available to anyone with mental health concerns including children, parents of children with cystic fibrosis, and adults with cystic fibrosis. For more information click here.
Child Dental Benefits Schedule
The Child Dental Benefits Schedule provides a capped rebate for basic dental services to children aged between 2 and 17 years for families receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A or some other Centrelink payments. For more information click here.
Centrelink Child Disability Assistance Payment
A payment is made each July if you receive Carer Allowance to care for a child with cystic fibrosis. For more information click here.
Centrelink Carer Allowance and Ex Carer Allowance Health Care Card
As cystic fibrosis is on Centrelink’s List of Recognised Disabilities, parents of all children with cystic fibrosis should be receiving Carer Allowance. This payment is not income tested. The criteria for Carer Allowance (caring for an adult) are very different and it is unlikely you will continue to receive Carer Allowance after your child turns 16. However, your child will be able to continue to have a Health Care Card as long as they are a full time student up to the age of 25.
Centrelink Carer Payment
Carer Payment is a subsistence payment similar to the Age Pension and Disability Support Pension. If your child needs a lot of care and your family income is low, you may be eligible for full or part Carer Payment.
For more information click here.
Centrelink Carer Supplement
A bonus payment is paid each July for people receiving Carer Allowance. If you also receive Carer Payment, you receive a second bonus. For more information click here.
Centrelink Carer Adjustment Payment
This is a one off payment which families newly diagnosed with cystic fibrosis can apply for if their child is under seven and they apply within two years of the diagnosis. To be eligible your income needs to have been affected by the diagnosis. Families receiving full income support payments from Centrelink such as Carer Payment are not eligible. Click here for more information.
In Home Care
In Home Care may be available to families unable to access existing child care services. Provided by registered care providers, In Home Care attracts a capped child care rebate. Contact providers directly if you are interested in accessing In Home Care for your child with cystic fibrosis or for their siblings when you have medical appointments for your child with cystic fibrosis. For more information click here.
Disability payments and services
Centrelink Disability Support Pension
The Disability Support Pension is a subsistence payment for people unable to work more than 15 hours per week. Ask for your doctor’s advice before applying. For more information on the Centrelink Disability Support Pension click here.
Centrelink Mobility Allowance
For people with a significant mobility impairment, Mobility Allowance provides a small payment and a Health Care Card and is not means tested. You need to be working or studying for at least 32 hours every four weeks. Talk to your doctor before applying. For more information on Mobility Allowance click here.
Queensland Government Companion Card
You may be eligible for a Companion Card if you need significant assistance to participate in community activities. When the person with a disability pays for entry, the card may provide free entry for the carer if the venue participates in the program. Click here for more information.
Australian Disability Parking Permit
Disability Parking Permits are for people whose ability to walk is severely is restricted by a medical condition and can't safely walk from a car park to the entrance of a shopping centre. You would need to be on portable oxygen or approaching transplant listing to qualify for this. For more information on Australia Disability Parking Permits click here.
Queensland Government Taxi Subsidy Scheme
To be eligible for half price taxi vouchers, you need to have a severe mobility impairment and be unable to walk 50 metres without stopping. You can apply for this when you are approaching listing for transplant. For more information on the Taxi Subsidy Scheme click here.
Government travel assistance
Queensland Health Patient Travel Subsidy Scheme (PTSS)
If you are a Queensland resident and need to travel more than 50 km to access a specialist health service, your local hospital will subsidise your travel. Patients who live in Mackay and further north can have their flights booked for them by their local hospital. For patients living closer to Brisbane than Mackay, ground transport will be subsidised. Application must be made before travelling so approval can be obtained. If claiming for the first time, we recommend visiting your local hospital Patient Travel Office to discuss how to claim. Explain that you, or your child, has cystic fibrosis, it is a lifelong condition and let them know how often you will be travelling. This will make it easier for them to correctly advise you how to claim. If you have difficulties, contact your hospital social worker or Cystic Fibrosis Queensland. For more information and forms click here.
New South Wales Health Transport for Health (IPTAAS)
If you are a New South Wales resident and live more than 100 km from your specialist service, New South Wales Health will subsidise your travel. Ask your local doctor to complete a referral form when claiming the first time. For more information and forms click here.
Northern Territory Government Patient Assistance Travel Scheme (PATS)
The Patient Assistance Travel Scheme (PATS) is a subsidy program that provides financial help for travel and accommodation expenses if you need to travel a long distance to see an approved medical specialist. You must be referred by a medical professional to the nearest approved specialist. For more information click here.