FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Many people in Australia worry about skin cancer with good reason. We have the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, with 2 out of every 3 Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer within their lifetime.

Anyone with a risk factor for skin cancer should consider getting a whole body skin examination. Skin cancers can appear even on areas of the body that are not exposed to the sun.

Our patients are people from all walks of life. Here are some of the risk factors that increase the risk of having a skin cancer:

  • A family member has had a skin cancer treated
  • You have been sunburnt in the past, particularly as a child
  • You have used a solarium in the past, particularly under the age of 30
  • You have a large number of moles on your body
  • You work outdoors or have done so in the past
  • You regularly pursue an outdoor sport such as cricket, golf, surfing, running, or swimming
  • You have had a skin cancer before
  • You have a very fair skin which burns easily

Prior to your initial skin check please look at your skin, scalp and private areas and note anything of particular concern that you may wish to mention to your doctor. Please do not wear any makeup, artificial tanner or hand or toe nail polish to your appointment. This is so your doctor has a clear and unobstructed view of your skin.

During a skin check Dr Norval will ask you to undress down to your undergarments. You will be asked to lie on the examination couch and all female patients will have a chaperone in the room (generally a Nurse or Medical Administration Assistant). You will be covered with a sheet and during the skin check will be checked using a variety of instruments such as a Dermlite or Molemate which magnifies and illuminates the skin. Any lesions needing further detailed examination will be checked with a dermatoscope, which allows Dr Norval to see the patterns within the spot with a remarkable amount of detail. If you know there is a mole that Dr Norval has not seen (perhaps under the underwear) you should let him know so they can examine this also.

Any lesion which appears to be suspicious will be noted. Dr Norval will also obtain your request for for a biopsy (where a small part of the lesion is removed and sent for pathological examination), once Pathology indicates that Skin Cancer has been detected we will contact you for a recall appointment for an excision (where the lesion is completely removed).

  1. Please come in with easy to remove clothing and little to no jewellery.
  2. Please make sure you point out any areas of concern. If you have any moles that have changed in appearance or moles that have become painful please make sure to mention these. Dr Norval will do a full skin check but often patients have a good idea if something seems a little unsual so if you are feeling something is wrong it is always best to point it out at the time of your appointment – there are no such things as embarrassing questions.
  3. Please do not wear strong perfumes or deodorants or body lotion.
  4. Please do not shave your legs for at least 5 days prior to your appointment. Often shaving can cause chaffing or cuts which can make your skin look abnormal.
  5. Please do not wear foundation or heavy make up as Dr Norval needs to see your skin clearly without making up masking your appearance.

FEES & BILLING INFORMATION

As an opening special to all new patients that book and have all proceedures attended to before the 31st of December 2022 we will bulk bill your full Skin Cancer Consultation and all biopsies and excisions that are required (including Skin Flaps and Grafts). You will need a valid and working Medicare Card on the day of your appoitnments.

From 1 January 2023 fees will will be:

FEE $150.00
MEDICARE REBATE $75.75
OUT OF POCKET $74.25

Concession Card Holders:

FEE $100.00
MEDICARE REBATE $75.75
OUT OF POCKET $24.25

Procedures such as biopsies and excisions can vary in cost depending upon the type and location on the body. If a procedure or biopsy is recommended by Dr Norval we will be able to give you a full quote and/or discuss alternative options prior to proceeding.

ALL EXCISIONS AND BIOPSIES done in 2022 only will be fully Bulk Billed. Fees apply from January 2023.

The actual amount will depend on the complexity of the work being done and a quote will be given to you on the day of your appointment. Pricing generally starts from $65.00 to remove a small skin flap during a 15 minute consult but fees can increase if there are multiple skin flaps and will depend on the area of the body.

Service will commence in 2023 and fees will be posted prior to the roll out of this service.

For patients who do not hold a Medicare Card, we endeavour to keep our fees as low as possible. Payment is expected at the time of consultation and can be made by cash, EFTPOS, MasterCard/Visa and payment will be required at the time of your appointment.

Please be advised that our Non Attendance Fee of $75 will be payable if we receive less than 4 hours notice on the day of your appointment. There is no Medicare Rebate for this expense. If you miss repeated appointments and do not pay the non attendance fee we will not be able to offer you any further appointments. Please note that for multiple non attendences in the same family the $75.00 non attendance fee will be charged per person.

TELEHEALTH SERVICES

If Dr Norval needs to follow up with you after your initial Skin Check appointment and you are unable to come in for an appointment we offer bulk-billed telephone consultations for your convenience. The process of booking a telephone consultation is simple and operates in the same manner as making a standard face to face appointment.

When making an appointment online (please go to Hotdoc) simply select the appointment type ‘phone consultation’ rather than the reason for the appointment. Alternatively, you can call reception on 07 3132 8960 for bookings. Please note Dr Norval can not diagnose Skin Cancers or offer follow up treatment by phone and email. Phone appointments are in the event you have questions pertaining to after care or medication use following your face to face consultation.

Please note Dr Norval will do his best to contact you at the scheduled time however unexpected delays may occur.

Please be advised that we DO NOT PRRESCRIBE S8 medications either in person or by phone.

PATIENT INFORMATION

GRACEVILLE SKIN runs an appointment system. You can make an appointment by contacting the practice by phone or booking online by HOTDOC. We do NOT offer Walk-in appointments. Dr Norval is frequently booked out weeks in advance and as a results will require a booking by phone or in person to discuss any needs, questions or concerns. He does not return patients phone calls without an appointment due to being heavily booked out with existing patients. Please understand that if he has multiple Interuptions without a valid appointment time this takes away time from his existing patient and leaves that patient without receiving the appropriate level of care they deserve.

Each appointment is for one person. If you have other family members who require medical attention, please make a separate booking for them aims to adhere to appointment schedules; however, the unpredictable nature of a medical practice means that doctors sometimes run behind time. This is mostly due to a patient requiring urgent medical attention. We sincerely regret any inconvenience caused to patients when we fall behind with our appointment schedule.
If you are a new patient please arrive at least 10 minutes prior to your appointment time to ensure Medicare card details and all relevant patient details are up to date. For all existing patients please be on time for your appointment. If you are late for your appointment Dr Norval will have to cut your appointment time short as he cannot keep his other patients waiting.

We would really appreciate it if you no longer need your appointment to please call and cancel so another patient can book the appointment.

In order to monitor your health and fulfil our ethical and legal responsibilities, we require that you attend your doctor in order to receive all results, scripts or referrals. Our receptionists are unable to provide you with your results over the phone however they will be able to contact you to ask that you return for a recall appointment.

It is our practice policy that Dr Norval does not take phone calls from patients or return patient’s phone calls. If a patient needs to speak to Dr Norval they must make a face to face or telephone appointment.

Reception staff are happy to put forward requests; however, it is at the doctor’s discretion in how they choose to proceed.

This practice is designed for wheelchair access.

For your convenience car parking is available in the carpark located near the clinic as well as in the surrounding streets.

Your medical records are private and confidential and only available to authorised members of staff. All information at GRACEVILLE SKIN is managed in accordance with the National Privacy Principles of the Privacy Act available at www.privacy.gov.au/health.

If you have any concerns, complaints or suggestions about any aspect of our service we would appreciate hearing about them and will take them seriously.

Please use one of the following:

Phone: 07 3132 8960
Email: mail@gracevilleskincancerclinic.com.au
Use the suggestion box.

Matters which are unable to be resolved within the practice may be referred to:

Office of the Health Ombudsman
133646 (133OHO)
complaints@oho.qld.gov.au
PO BOX 13281,
George Street
Brisbane 4003