FAQs

Please find a list of our frequently asked questions below. If you require further information, please call 07/3846 3915 or 07/3393 2451.
1. Do I need a referral to see the doctor?

As our Doctors are Specialists it is a requirement of the Health Insurance Commission that you need a referral from a General Practitioner or a Specialist to see the Doctor.  A referral from a GP only remains current for 12 months.  However a referral from a Specialist to a Specialist will only last for 3 months.  The responsibility of a current referral is the patient/parents responsibility.

2.  What is the difference between being a public patient and a private patient?

Should you elect to be admitted as a Public patient in a Public Hospital, you are not guaranteed that the Consultant you saw Privately will perform the surgery.  Depending on availability the surgery could be performed by another Consultant in conjunction with a Surgical Trainee.

If you elect to be treated as a Public patient our Doctor will send a letter to the Public Hospital with a signed consent form requesting a date for surgery. A category will be given for the surgery, dependent on urgency, and your child’s name will be placed on the Public waiting list. Once the booking goes to the Hospital the Private rooms will have no further involvement with the booking.  You are normally notified by mail of the date.  They usually give you a month’s notice or phone contact if there is a cancellation.

The main benefit for being treated as a Private patient is choice. Your child's surgery can be provided in a choice of Private Hospitals. You can also choose the date that is convenient to you, avoid waiting lists and be treated promptly. Also, most importantly, you are guaranteed your Surgeon of choice. Your child's surgery would also not be cancelled a short notice unless on the rare occasion your Surgeon is unwell. Where as In the Public system, if a more urgent case needs to be scheduled, your child's case can be cancelled at very short notice.

3. Do you direct bill my private health fund?

Yes our Doctors Direct Bill all Health Funds with no out of pocket expenses for their fees. You still may have an excess on your Hospital charges.  Also the Anaesthetist will post likely have a ‘Gap’ and they will notify you separately. We also advise that you check with your health fund that you are not serving any waiting periods or have any restrictions on your Health Fund. Our secretaries can supply you with any relevant item numbers to be sure that you are covered. You also have the option if you are uninsured  or your Health Fund is not covering your child's care, of paying the costs of Private care yourselves. Our secretarial staff can provide a quote from the Private Hospital you choose and any GAP payments for the Surgeon and Anaesthetists fees.

4. Do you perform circumcisions?

Our Doctors do perform elective circumcisions, however it is our policy to perform them in a Hospital under a General Anaesthetic after the child is six months of age.  They do not use the Plastibel method.  The circumcision is complete at the time of surgery.  We do not do new born circumcisions.   If you are requesting the circumcision for cultural, religious or personal choice, the circumcision cannot be performed on a Public list.  If you do not have Private Health Insurance we can provide you with a quote to have the circumcised performed in a private hospital.

5. What conditions do Paediatric Surgeons see and treat?

Paediatric Surgeons diagnose, treat and manage children’s surgical needs including

  • Antenatal counselling for congenital anomalies of the skin, head, neck, chest and abdomen

  • Surgery for head and neck pathologies such as thyroglossal and neck cysts, lymph gland enlargement and infections

  • Surgery for thoracic conditions such as chest wall deformities, lung cysts and lung infection

  • Surgery for abnormalities of the groin in childhood and adolescence which includes undescended testes, hernias, hydroceles, varicoceles and foreskin abnormalities

  • Surgery for Urological Conditions which would include Hypospadias and surgical correction of abnormalities of the kidney and bladder

  • Diagnosis and surgical care of Tumours except brain and bone

  • All other general surgical procedures for children from laparoscopic appendicectomy to excision of various lesions and cysts and repair of lacerations and abdominal pain diagnoses.

6.Tongue ties

Yes, Paediatric Surgeons do see and treat tongue-ties. See procedures for more information.

7. I have posted my booking form or contacted the hospital on line but haven’t heard anything?

If you are going to a Private Hospital you will not hear from the Hospital until the week of or the week prior to surgery.  We also notify the Hospital of your booking so rest assured the booking will be sent.  If you are going to a Public Hospital they generally notify you by mail with normally 3-4 weeks notice.  They may ring you if they have a cancellation.

8. What do I do if my child needs urgent surgical review?

Firstly, if it is during office hours our secretarial staff can direct you towards the right course of action. After hours, our office phone service have a recorded message informing you which Consultant is on call and how to contact them. Note: if you are a new patient, you will need to be referred.

If the situation is acute, you should proceed to your local hospital emergency department. If you are in Brisbane, the Lady Cilento Children's Hospital Emergency Department is very helpful, and if you wanted to be private they will contact a consultant for you. Other Private Hospital emergency departments are also available throughout Brisbane.

If the medical emergency is more urgent, please call 000.