Previously we discussed the Australian government announcing a cut to funding for hip arthroscopy in the management of Femoroacetabular Impingement Syndrome.

This took affect on the 1st November 2016. Specifically it incorporated the removal of FAI from three billing codes.

48424: Femur or Pelvis Osteotomy/Osteectomy

49303: Hip Arthrotomy

49366: Hip Arthroscopic Surgery

Billing rates for these item codes are now available from the introduction of the new policy till 30th June 2017. For full breakdown of the billing statistics click here.

Below is a graphical representation of the billing rates since March 2016. (Disclaimer: this billing code incorporates surgeries performed on conditions such as Slipped Upper Femoral Epiphysis (SUFE), Dysplasia or Perthes Disease, not solely FAI)

There is a trend for 2 of the 3 billing codes to head in the downward direction. However, this change in funding is in its infancy and it is unclear what will occur over the coming year.

This raises some important questions:

Will these numbers continue to fall, stay stable or increase again?

Will Australia see a change in the rates of FAI diagnosis and intervention compared to other countries?

Which states have higher rates of surgery compared to others? Below is a graphical representation of the billing rates since November 2016 per 100,000 people. (Disclaimer: this billing code incorporates osteotomies/osteectomies performed on conditions such as SUFE, Dysplasia or Perthes Disease, not solely FAI)

Why do the rates of surgery vary between states?…