Contact Enable on 1800362253 or email enable@health.nsw.gov.au

Frequently Asked Questions

Am I eligible to claim IPTAAS?

To claim, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a resident of NSW or Lord Howe Island and hold a Medicare card
  • Live more than 100km from the nearest treating specialist or your combined trips to and from the specialist exceed 200kms/week
  • Not be eligible for any other government travel assistance schemes
  • Not be claiming expenses under Workers Compensation
  • Not hold a gold Department of Veterans' Affairs (DVA) card – please refer to DVA for assistance.

What can I claim through IPTAAS?

You can claim a subsidy towards the following if you are eligible:

  • Private vehicle travel
  • Public transport (trains, buses, ferries and taxis)
  • Air travel (in special circumstances)
  • Accommodation
  • In some circumstances we provide financial assistance towards the cost of having an escort/ carer support you during your treatment.

When can I claim assistance with the cost of an escort/carer accompanying me for my visits?

When a referring medical practitioner or treating specialist certifies that it is medically necessary for you to have someone with you during your trip and fills out the section on your IPTAAS claim form. Your medical practitioner can advise you if you meet the criteria for escort/carer.

Can I get a subsidy towards air travel to see my specialist?

Before you fly, you are required to obtain a prior approval number from your local IPTAAS office. Your specialist or referring doctor can obtain this number on your behalf by contacting the local IPTAAS office.

Failure to obtain pre approval may result in reimbursements at a lower rate.

How do I know if I am eligible for reimbursements for air travel?

To be considered for reimbursements for air travel through IPTAAS, your doctor must certify that there is medical need for you to fly. Please refer to the clinical criteria below:

  • Patient requires active clinical management, for example, ambulatory oxygen, regular catheterisation by self/carer, frequent nebuliser therapy
  • Patient has severe pain that is likely to be worsened by prolonged sitting
  • Patient needs urgent medical treatment or has a life-threatening condition that may worsen during a long road journey
  • Patient has restricted mobility such as quadriplegia, paraplegia, hemiplegia and those requiring significant assistance which precludes other forms of transport
  • Patient has a musculoskeletal instability where other modes of transport may compromise their treatment outcome

What is a prior approval number for Air Travel?

If you meet the criteria for air travel subsidy, before you travel, the referring doctor, specialist, or their authorised representative, must contact the relevant IPTAAS office for a Prior Approval Number for air travel and enter this number on the Claim Form.

Who can get an air approval number?

Your referring doctor, specialist or their authorised representative can call, fax or email your IPTAAS office to obtain a prior approval number.

Can I get air approval for an extended time?

If it is identified that air travel is medically required for the length of your treatment, your doctors can request an extended air approval for 6 months. This means that you will not be required to call the IPTAAS office for approval for each appointment to that specialist treatment for 6 months.

What is a co-payment?

IPTAAS is a subsidy, not a full reimbursement scheme. Patients and their escorts (if applicable) who are not pensioners or health care card holders are required to make a contribution towards the cost of their travel. This contribution is known as co-payment.

How much is the co-payment and who has to pay it?

If you (or your escort) are not a pension or HealthCare card holder, you will be required to pay a co-payment. Co-payments are $30 per return journey and are capped at 4 co-payments for appointment dates within a financial year period. This means that the highest co-payment anyone will pay within a financial year is $120 regardless of how many return journeys they have taken.

If you anticipate that this contribution would result in financial hardship, please contact EnableNSW or an IPTAAS office to discuss your individual circumstances.

When does the co-payment period start again?

Co-payments are now aligned to the financial year and capped at a maximum of 4 per year.

How many co-payments do I have to pay if I am on a Pension of have a Heath Care Card?

If you hold a pension or healthcare card, you are not required to pay co-payment.

What are the IPTAAS subsides?

* Travel for private vehicle is 22 cents per kilometre
* Public transport full cost reimbursed less the GST and bookings fees
* Private stay $20 per night per person. Airbnb bookings are also reimbursed at this rate.

Not-For-Profit Accommodation
* Accommodation for patient is $43 per night for the first 7 nights per financial year
* Accommodation for patient and escort is $60 per night shared for the first 7 nights per financial year
* Accommodation for patient is $65 per night for 8 nights plus per financial year
* Accommodation for patient and escort is $85 per night shared for 8 nights plus per financial year

For-Profit Accommodation
* Accommodation for patient is $43 per night for the first 7 nights per financial year
* Accommodation for patient and escort $60 per night for the first 7 nights per financial year.
* Accommodation for patient is $80 for 8 to 14 nights per financial year
* Accommodation for patient and escort $105 for 8 to 14 nights per financial year.
* Accommodation for patient is $105 for 15 nights plus per financial year
* Accommodation for patient and escort is $120 for 15 nights plus per financial year

What's the difference between profit/not for profit accommodation?

For-profit accommodation providers do not have charitable status. (Please note that the providers will all know which type of accommodation they are)

Not-for-profit accommodation is provided by organisations that are registered as a charity in the Australian Business Register, which can be searched using either the accommodation provider's name or ABN.

Are there any facilities that Bulk Bill accommodation costs?

Yes. You can apply for bulk billing of your accommodation subsidy if you stay more than 3 consecutive nights. You will need to apply for bulk billing on page 2 of your claim application. A list of bulk billers can be found on the IPTAAS website. You can also check with your accommodation provider to confirm if they offer bulk billing.

How do I apply for bulk billing?

Upon arrival at the accommodation facility, ask them to help you complete Part 1 of the claim form including their details on page 2 and send this to your local IPTAAS office for approval.

How do I claim?

There are several ways to claim:

  1. Claim online – this is the fastest way to claim
  2. Complete the claim forms manually and post, email or fax your forms to your local IPTAAS office.

Will you still accept old forms?

We are happy to accept old forms; however, these forms are eventually being phased out.

Should you require a new form, feel free to download it or we will be happy to post some to you.

What forms do I need?

To submit a claim you will need the IPTAAS claim form. For easy use our claim forms have separate sections know as parts. There are three parts within the claim the form.

The IPTAAS forms Include:

  • Claim Form
  • Travel Diary
  • Doctor Referral Form
  • Advance Payment Form
  • Practitioner Application – Prosthetic and Orthotic

For your Initial or first Visit to your Specialist complete a claim form with the following section:

  • Part 1 – Patient and Escort Details
  • Part 2 – Travel and Accommodation details
  • Part 3 - Specialist and Treatments

For multiple trips within the same month to the same specialist complete a Travel Diary Form

For Bulk Billing complete the Claim Form with the following section:

  • Part 1 – Patient and Escort Details
  • 1.7 Bulk Bill Accommodation Details.
  • Doctor Referral Form (if it is the first visit to your specialist)

At the end of your stay, you will need to complete and submit:

  • Part 2 – Travel and Accommodation details
  • Part 3 - Specialist and Treatments

For Advanced Payments:

  • Complete the Advanced Payment Form and submit to your local IPTAAS office

When you return home:

Complete the Claim Form with the following sections

  • Part 2 – Travel and Accommodation details
  • Part 3 - Specialist and Treatments.

How long will it take to process my claim?

The time it takes to process a claim varies but payment should be made within 30 days from the date we receive your claim, subject to the correct information and necessary documentation being received by IPTAAS.

However, if we need to do a follow up with yourself or your referring medical specialist this may delay your claim.

When do I need a Doctors Referral form?

If it is the first visit to a specialist or if your circumstances change, you are required to complete a Doctors Referral form.

How long is my Doctors referral form valid?

Your referral is valid for 24 months. If you visit a new specialist a new referral is required. If your circumstances change and you now require an escort a new Doctors Referral Form will need to be submitted if you did not previously request one.

This isn't the first visit to my specialist, when do I need to complete a new Doctor Referral Form?

No, as long as it within the 24 month period from your initial appointment date.

You will be required to submit a new Doctor’s referral form with the first claim you lodge 24 months after your first appointment with that specialist.

What is a travel diary and when can I use one?

A travel diary is used to record multiple return trips (within the same month) to the same specialist on a single form to eliminate the need to complete a claim form for each trip.

You can use a travel diary once you have submitted your first claim on an IPTAAS claim form.

Can I access IPTAAS for all prosthetic services? Is everything covered?

You may be covered for some visits to prosthetic / orthotic services that are eligible for IPTAAS subsidies provided the standard IPTAAS eligibility criteria are met.

Please note that the standard IPTAAS travel and accommodation subsidies apply.

Is IPTAAS available for Allied Health Services?

From 1 February 2016, rural and isolated patients travelling to highly specialised Allied Health clinics can claim for travel and accommodation for the first time.

What Allied Health services are included?

Eligible services have been defined using the clinic name and address, rather than the clinician’s name.

The criteria are that the clinic provides:

  • A highly specialised allied health service, that is, including advanced scope of practice by the allied health clinician;
  • It is NOT available outside a few major centres/locations
  • of a type generally provided in a public hospital in a tertiary setting
  • the service is endorsed by a doctor to be provided at a clinic (or a specified clinic location)
  • part of a regime of care supervised by a doctor
  • delivered face-to-face

Any Allied Health service at these clinics will be eligible for IPTAAS subsidy, including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology, audiology, dietetics and counseling.

What if my Allied Health clinic is not included?

IPTAAS for Allied Health is for services that are so specialised that they are only in a few locations and therefore people generally travel from across the State to these centres.

Allied Health services which are offered in all, or most LHDs are not eligible for IPTAAS. Many people see an Allied Health clinician during the same trip as a specialist medical appointment. These claims are still eligible as the patient saw a medical specialist during that visit.

What if I think I go to an Allied Health clinic that meets the criteria but isn’t on the list?

Implementation will be monitored and the list reviewed on a regular basis by the Ministry and the network of LHD Allied Health Directors to consider any other clinics put forward. Recommendations arising will be made to the Minister for Health for consideration.

Clinics will still need to meet the criteria of being highly specialised and involving advanced practice skills. There are likely to be only one or two centres in the State providing the service.

What if my Allied Health clinic is interstate because it is closer to my home than the equivalent Sydney clinic?

When an equivalent service in another State is closer to your home than a NSW clinic, the interstate clinic will, in principle, be eligible for IPTAAS.

Before travelling, you should contact EnableNSW and provide the name and address of your interstate clinic. The staff will check with the Allied Health Advisory Committee that your clinic is an equivalent to the NSW clinic and you will be contacted to advise your eligibility.

I have to travel a long way, or wait a long time to see my Allied Health clinician. Why is my service not eligible?

There are other ways to address local access issues to Allied Health services and IPTAAS subsidies are not seen as the best solution to local waiting lists. LHD Chief Executives can be contacted to look into issues about access to local and regional services.

Clinics which have equivalents in many LHDs were not included, as services that can be made available in most regions do not meet the criteria as being a ‘highly specialised allied health service’.

Further, IPTAAS is a scheme to help people access for specialist health services. It doesn’t apply to the type of generalist services that should be available locally or regionally, eg GP visits, or general allied health services.

I have the old IPTAAS phone number? Can I still call the number and will it work?

We encourage you to use the 1800 number as you can select your closest IPTAAS office. The previous IPTAAS number is still available; please note the previous number is being phased out.

How do I contact my local office?

If you call the toll free 1800-IPTAAS number you will be given an option of calling your local office.

  • Select Option 1 for the Hunter New England office
  • Select Option 2 for the Port Macquarie office
  • Select Option 3 for the Broken Hill office
  • Select Option 4 for all other areas

If you are unsure which option to select, choose option 5 and one of our friendly customer service officers will assist you.

Alternatively you can contact your local office on:

Hunter New England – Tamworth
Fax: (02) 6766 4576
Email: HNELHD-IPTAAS@hnehealth.nsw.gov.au
Post: IPTAAS Coordinator
Locked Bag 9783, Tamworth NEMSC NSW 2348

Northern NSW, Mid North Coast – Port Macquarie
Fax: (02) 5524 2996
Email: TFH-IPTAAS@ncahs.health.nsw.gov.au
Post: IPTAAS Coordinator - PO Box 126, Port Macquarie NSW 2444

Far West – Broken Hill
Fax: (08) 8080 1695
Email: FWLHD-IPTAAS@health.nsw.gov.au
Post: IPTAAS Coordinator

Broken Hill Health Service - PO Box 457, Broken Hill NSW 2880

For all other areas
Fax: (02) 8797 6543
Email:  IPTAAS@health.nsw.gov.au
Post: IPTAAS Coordinator - Locked Bag 5270 Parramatta NSW 2124

How do I apply online?

Claiming for the first time – online

  • Register your details at IPTAAS
  • An IPTAAS registration number will be allocated to you. Use this number to lodge your claim online.
  • Have your doctor complete a Doctor Referral form
  • Print Part 3 of the claim form (PDF) and have your specialist or their authorised representative complete it at your appointment
  • Scan or photograph your travel and accommodation receipts and Part 3 of the claim form and attach this to your online claim
  • Submit your claim

Subsequent claims – online

  • Log on to the OneGov website with your username and password
  • Use your allocated IPTAAS registration number to complete your claim online
  • Scan or photograph your travel and accommodation receipts and submit your claim
  • An email is sent to the treating specialist who will confirm your treatment dates

Note: If your specialist is not registered with IPTAAS you will need to scan and submit Part 3 with your online claim.

If I want to provide feedback, how do I do this?

Send feedback using our feedback form or alternatively, you can call our office to see if our customer service team can assist with your concerns.