Medicare move going ahead

DESPITE community concerns, Morwell’s Medicare office will begin offering its services from a shared site with Centrelink from 28 May.

The Department of Human Services’ one-stop-shop offering Centrelink and Medicare services together in Morwell would provide “a more seamless service” to the public, according to a federal minister.

In a media release, Human Services Minister Kim Carr said the services provided under one roof would “make lives easier”.

“All staff who provide Medicare services at 246 Commercial Road will relocate and offer the same services alongside Centrelink on the corner of Chapel and Elgin streets, and a new electronic payment method has been introduced to deliver Medicare rebates payments safely and securely,” Senator Carr said.

Advance Morwell chair John Guy said despite being disappointed at the lack of community consultation prior to the relocation, when the committee met with the managers of the Centrelink and Medicare offices last month, it was “quite clear they were going ahead with it (regardless).”

“We’ll have to wait and see how things go; the community won’t react until it happens,” Mr Guy said.

Among some of the concerns raised by Advance Morwell previously about the relocation included a lack of parking space, an electronic rebate system which meant customers would have to visit banks to withdraw their refunds, and ease of access to public transport facilities and for persons with a disability.