Production of the Medicare Benefits Schedule

The production of the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) for November 2008 is changing to primarily an online publication rather than a printed book.

Page last updated: 08 October 2008

This will mean that in the future no hard-copy of the November MBS book will be printed or distributed by the Department of Health and Ageing.

Instead, in late October the Department will provide MBS subscribers with a CD of the MBS which is consistent with the previous timeframe used for the book distribution. This new electronic version will enable users to quickly search and view MBS items, or to print the entire MBS or any pages frequently used.

The Department, in cooperation with Medicare Australia, will also distribute an online training module on how to use the MBS. This CD provides detailed information on both the MBS and MBS Online and will assist users in transitioning from the book to the online version.

For those users who would still prefer an MBS book, these may be purchased from a number of publishing vendors as a ‘Print-on-Demand’ order. The Department’s MBS Online website at will provide a list of publishing vendors who offer this service. Alternatively users can approach their preferred publishing vendor who may also be able to offer this service.

MBS Online is currently the primary source of the MBS and the complete MBS will be available to download from this site. New functionality on this site will allow users to create a document based on their most commonly used MBS items which can be viewed directly from the browser, printed, saved to the desktop or to another preferred file location.

The major advantage of this tailored publication will be the ability for users to quickly and easily find the correct information on particular items, instead of searching through an 800 page hard-copy of the MBS, which can quickly be outdated as changes to the MBS occur.

This move to an electronic online publication allows the Department and the wider medical profession more time and flexibility when developing and negotiating changes to the MBS. It will also provide the opportunity to stagger changes to the MBS throughout the year.

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Created on 8 October 2008.