About our services
Virtual care, also known as telehealth, provides a secure way to connect with health professionals through teleconferences, using a computer, tablet, or mobile phone.
In rural NSW, where specialised care may involve expenses and travel, virtual care uses everyday technology to connect you with healthcare professionals. Virtual care appointments can be held at home, at the GP, or in hospital.
Watch our videos and learn about the benefits of virtual care offered in our district.
Frequently asked questions
Which clinicians offer virtual care?
Every clinician in the Murrumbidgee Local Health District can provide services virtually, as long as it's clinically suitable. Speak to your doctor, nurse, allied health professional, or pharmacist to discover how you can receive your services through virtual care.
What are the advantages of virtual care?
Using Virtual Care can make going to appointments easier and more convenient. This might include:
- Less or no need for travel, saving you time and money and avoiding inconvenience.
- Minimised disruption to your life, including family, work, and daily routine.
- Coordinated care by involving different people in your healthcare.
Many people combine virtual and face-to-face appointments. You could decide to meet your healthcare provider in person first and then follow up with virtual appointments later on.
What are the disadvantages of virtual care?
Virtual visits might not always be the right choice for your health. Your treatment might need physical check-ups, tests, or investigations that you have to do in person.
If your internet is not working well, the video or sound might not work properly.
Medicare has some rules about which medical services can be done through virtual care.
What if I prefer face-to-face consultations?
It's always up to you to decide if virtual care is part of your care plan. You can choose to meet your clinician in person if that's what you prefer.
What equipment do I need?
To get ready for your appointment, make sure you have:
- a reliable internet or mobile data connection
- an email address
- a device with a camera, microphone, and speakers. This could be a Windows or Mac computer, an Apple iPad/iPhone, or an Android smartphone or tablet
- find a private, well-lit area where you won't be disturbed during the consultation.
If you don't have the needed equipment, you can still attend the virtual consultation with participating GPs or at your local community health facility.
Is virtual care secure and private?
Murrumbidgee Local Health District uses software similar to Skype or Facetime, but it's entirely secure, encrypted, and confidential.
Your personal information and the consultation will be kept private and confidential. The consultation won't be recorded. The same privacy rules and laws that apply to traditional face-to-face appointments also apply to all virtual appointments.
What will it cost me to use virtual care?
We won't charge you any fees. You might be requested to give consent for Murrumbidgee Local Health District to bulk bill Medicare, similar to a face-to-face specialist appointment.
Using virtual care will consume some of your internet download capacity. As a reference, a 15-minute video call uses about 80MB, and an audio-only call uses around 10MB. This is similar to the data usage of Skype and Facetime.
If your GP is involved, ask them about any potential costs to you.
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- The NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation has some great resources for getting started with virtual care, including some tips for preparing for a virtual appointment.
- The NSW Virtual Care Strategy promotes a coordinated and sustainable approach to expand virtual care across the region. It builds on the innovative work of health partners. View or download the NSW Virtual Care Strategy 2021-2026 (PDF 4.55MB) for details.
Information for clinicians
All services and staff in the Murrumbidgee Local Health District can use software and technology for virtual care.
By adding virtual care to your services, you save time and money for both you and your patients. It provides better care than using just the phone.