Questions about accounts and medication costs

How do I pay my bill?

Paying your bill is simple through our online portal.

Pay your account here.

I have private health insurance, so why did I receive an invoice?

The pharmacy provides medicines during your hospital stay as determined by your prescribing doctor, while payment responsibility is determined by your private health fund. Please contact your doctor if you have questions about an item prescribed to you and contact your health fund about why you are personally being charged. Discharge medicines are commonly not covered by health funds but there may be other medicines that aren’t covered.

Why am I being charged for pharmaceutical items?

In line with hospital and health fund policies, you are responsible for the cost of medications you were taking prior to your stay in hospital, and not related to the reason for your admission, and/or medications prescribed for you on discharge. Please contact your health fund for further detail around your policy cover.

I have a concession or Safety Net card. Why am I being charged the full price?

Some prescriptions for medicines are not eligible for Safety Net benefits, including private prescriptions (see below) and premium brands, or medications not covered by the PBS. Our pharmacists can confirm the PBS eligibility of your prescriptions.

If a prescription is presented to a pharmacy within 20 days of a previous prescription for the same medication, you will not receive the Safety Net Benefit even if you have reached the threshold.

What are private scripts?

A private prescription is one that is not subsidised by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). This means the full cost is the responsibility of the patient. Concession, certain DVA and Safety Net entitlements do not apply to private prescriptions. Private prescriptions are noted on your invoice with a ‘no’ under the PBS column.

Why do some PBS prescriptions have an additional cost?

Sometimes the government adds a special charge to certain brands of medicines, the most common being ‘Brand Price Premium.’ For more information about these charges, please contact your doctor who may be able to give you a different brand which does not attract the charge.

Why are there two or more charges for the same medicines?

When the quantity of tablets from a single prescription is less than you’ll use in a month, you may need more than one prescription dispensed to provide the sufficient amount. Some common medicines where this occurs include paracetamol, prochlorperazine and tramadol.

Why is the name of the medicine different to the name I know?

Each medicine has two names, the generic and brand name. The generic is the actual name of the medicine while the brand name is given by the company who produces it. For example, paracetamol is a generic name while Panadol, Panamax and Herron are all brand names for paracetamol. The generic name is always used on your pharmacy account because it doesn’t change.

Why do some medicines cost more than others?

The cost of some medications may not be subsidised by the government through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), so the full cost will appear on your invoice. You can easily tell which medications these are by looking at the PBS column.

Why have I been charged the same amount for different quantities of the same medicines?

In some situations your doctor is able to request a special prescription from the government, which is known as an Authority Prescription, so we can provide increased quantities of medicines for the same cost.

What is hospital discharge medicine?

Your doctor may have prescribed medication for your continued treatment after you leave hospital. Most discharge medicines are not covered by private health funds.

Depending on your health fund, you may receive an account for medicines provided in hospital or on discharge.

What if I am a Hospital DVA Patient?

Your medication costs during your hospital stay are determined by the type of DVA card you hold.

  • Gold Card: All inpatient and discharge drugs are covered, providing the item is on the PBS and is prescribed in the correct manner for it to be covered. Personal items such as toiletries are not included
  • White Card: DVA covers you for only certain medical conditions so you may receive a separate pharmacy account for other items
  • Orange Card: DVA subsidises the cost of your medicines, therefore you will receive an account for the co-payment portion of any medication used during admission or supplied on discharge

Please note that discharge medicines may not be covered.

Why didn’t I receive a receipt for my medicines?

Receipts are not issued automatically but if you would like one, please contact us.

Can I bring my own medications to hospital?

If your medications are in their original packs you can bring these into hospital for use during your admission. Due to hospital safety protocol, medications supplied in blister packs or other dose administration aids cannot be used during your hospital stay. Please discuss this with your Epic pharmacist or care team during your admission.

Can a medication be returned and refunded as credit?

Once a medication leaves the pharmacy it cannot be returned or re-used. This is because the safety of the medication cannot be guaranteed. As such, Epic are unable to provide a refund or credit for any medications that have left the pharmacy. At Epic we work with hospital staff to coordinate patient discharge prescriptions to ensure that the right medications and the correct amount are supplied. Please ensure that you check your medication prior to leaving the pharmacy. Please note this also applies to any medication that has resulted in an allergic reaction.


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