Private medical practitioners and their practice staff can access the Free Interpreting Service to provide Medicare rebatable services to anyone in Australia who is eligible for Medicare.Private medical practitioners are defined as general practitioners, nurse practitioners, and approved medical specialists.
From 24 October 2022, some privately employed allied health professionals will have access to the Australian Government’s Free Interpreting Services (FIS). The FIS aims to provide equitable access to key services for people with limited or no English language proficiency. The service is delivered by the Department of Home Affairs’ Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) on behalf of the Australian Government. The expansion of the FIS to include allied health professionals is a pilot program limited to 32 Local Government Areas (LGAs).
For Victoria, this includes Allied Health Services in the following LGAs: Casey, Greater Dandenong, Hume, Wyndham, Brimbank, Melton, Greater Geelong, Greater Shepparton, Mildura, Wodonga.
Interpreters are not generally funded for allied health services, however hospitals and community health centres receive funding to purchase language services.
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This information sheet is one of a series produced by the Centre for Culture Ethnicity & Health covering aspects of language services.