This discount is just what the doctor ordered

This discount is just what the doctor ordered: Do you qualify?

doctor discount

As the weather warms up, some Australians will be dreading their summer power bills more than others because of their reliance on air conditioning to stay healthy, not just cool.

Fortunately, there are electricity discounts offered to those who suffer from illnesses that interfere with the body’s ‘thermostat’.

In Victoria, subsidies of 17.5 per cent are available … and that is on top of the 17.5 per cent discount that holders of Seniors Health Cards receive. A person whose use of air conditioning spikes during hot spells can expect to receive as much as 35 per cent off their electricity bills.

Many diseases can interfere with the body’s ability to regulate temperature, so there are probably thousands of Australians who need to ensure their ambient temperature does not rise above a certain level. Searing hot weather will likely see them being hospitalised as complications set in from their inability to cool down naturally.

Conditions that impair a person’s ability to regulate their own temperature include:

  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Lymphoedema
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Post-polio syndrome/poliomyelitis
  • Motor neurone disease
  • Scleroderma
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus.

To find out if you qualify for this rebate, contact the Concessions Information Line on 1800 658 521 (toll-free) or phone your power provider for an application form.

A doctor will need to sign your completed forms before you return them to your electricity retailer. Your electricity retailer will check your concession card details with Centrelink and apply the discount to your bill.

Do you have a medical condition that requires you to use equipment at home? Are your utility bills affected by your medical condition?

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    COMMENTS

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    Kathleen
    18th Oct 2017
    11:43am
    In Victoria, we need consideration in the cold weather to help with heating. My husband feels the cold now like he has never done before. Arthritis is probably the main reason elderly people need consideration with heating in the colder parts of Australia. Gas used to be cheap but recently it has skyrocketed so it must be hard for many elderly people who cannot get warm.
    debs
    18th Oct 2017
    11:58am
    Hi Kathleen,
    the article didn't really explain very well. It only covers a list of medical conditions like MS (multiple sclerosis), autonomic system dysfunction, significant burns or a severe inflammatory skin condition, which is aggravated by changes in temperature.
    I get my rebate for having a brain injury which destroyed my internal thermostat. But worth a try for hubby ;-)
    Kathleen
    19th Oct 2017
    12:53am
    Debs, there is nothing for the gas in Victoria. I have lymphoemema so get it for that. That is for electricity for six months of the year. I did not know it was capped but did not seem to get a lot last time. Hopefully, they will get it right this time for the 1/11.
    debs
    20th Oct 2017
    12:28pm
    Kathleen, sadly, where i live I can only get bottled gas!
    debs
    18th Oct 2017
    11:54am
    ** Info line is not available on a mobile phone (which I now have to use because no landline with NBN)
    **It is not a discount. It is a rebate -The actual NAME of the concession is - Medical Cooling and Heating Electricity Concession Scheme and is paid yearly by Centrelink = maximum amount is $340.85. NOT the energy provider.
    The link in QLD to find the form (to be completed by doctor):-
    https://www.qld.gov.au/community/cost-of-living-support/medical-cooling-heating-electricity-concession-scheme
    I imagine you just substitute your state for qld...
    It would have been useful to have these details included in the article!!
    Star Trekker
    18th Oct 2017
    4:31pm
    It is not 35% off the bill. It is 17.5% of the bill after the Centrelink energy supplement is subtracted and another 17.5% off the usage for medical cooling. I claim this for my daughter who has Fibromyalgia and other various syndromes
    Suzie
    19th Oct 2017
    3:11pm
    The 1800 658 521 is not connected...I tried from my landline. I have been advised to contact my power provider.If they don't offer a discount other than for Seniors, try i-select at 03-9452-9090, and ask for Roshni.

    Suzanne
    debs
    20th Oct 2017
    12:32pm
    Could Olga please explain exactly which "discount" she is talking about. This seems to be a very confusing and misleading article