How much will my examination cost?

For medical imaging services at University Hospital Geelong, Geelong Private Hospital, Torquay Community Health Centre and McKellar Centre  our billing policy means that there is currently no out-of-pocket costs for the majority of Medicare reimbursable imaging (excludes Nuchal Translucency ultrasound and some Nuclear Medicine items - which attract an out-of-pocket cost).  This applies to all patients as well pensioners and health care card holders.

Patients with queries regarding cost of imaging should contact BMI Bookings and Enquiries line (03) 4215 0300

Tell me more about radiation safety

Barwon Medical Imaging is committed to providing the very best in radiological services to its patients. Part of this commitment includes ongoing testing and servicing of all diagnostic radiographic equipment at all sites, and continual review of the protocols used and quality assurance testing.

Our new Philips Digital Radiography (DR) systems use 50% less radiation dose compared with other x-ray systems.

In addition, the equipment manufacturers carry out regular scheduled servicing on behalf of Barwon Medical Imaging.  We have also adopted the recommendation of the International Commission on Radiological Protection regarding minimizing exposure of patients to ionising radiation.  Barwon Health complies with all the requirements of the Radiation Act 2005 which includes Compliance Testing of equipment, Management Licensing and individual User Licenses.

Each of our highly trained radiographic staff is licensed to use our modern equipment; they are also continually training in new techniques to ensure that a high standard of radiographic service is maintained.

Children and Medical Imaging

In addition to the information provided on the BMI website, it is recommended that children having a medical imaging examination have a look at the Royal Children’s Hospital website and if possible to download a free award-winning application called ‘Okee’  onto either a phone, tablet, or computer. 'Okee' provides a number of video clips which explain medical imaging examinations through the eyes of a child.

As a parent or carer of a child, it may wish to view the following videos that explain the different types of medical imaging examinations so that when you arrive for your examination there are no ‘in room surprises’. This is particularly important for children with learning or behavioural difficulties.

The following videos have been produced by the Royal Children’s Hospital and are recommended for viewing by your child prior to attendance. These videos are also available through the Okee App.

Having an X-Ray - Video and Fact Sheet from Royal Children’s Hospital



Having an Ultrasound – Fact Sheet with Video from Royal Children’s Hospital



Having a CT – Video and Fact Sheet from Royal Children’s Hospital



Having an MRI – Fact Sheet with Video from Royal Children’s Hospital



Having a Nuclear Medicine Scan  – Fact Sheet and Video from Royal Children’s Hospital




Is CT safe for Children?

My request form is made out to a different imaging provider; can I have my imaging undertaken at BMI?

Yes, Barwon Medical Imaging is able to carry out imaging procedures on any Provider’s Request Form. Patients have the choice to choose an imaging provider best suited to their needs.  Our bookings and enquiries line (4215 0300) will be able to assist you with any queries you may have.

What is a safe dose of medical x-rays?

The doses of radiation used in medical diagnosis are relatively low and the risks associated with them are very small in comparison with the direct benefit to the patient from the improved diagnosis. The 'correct' dose for a particular x-ray examination is essentially the minimum that is required to make an accurate diagnosis. This will vary from patient to patient depending on their particular medical problem, on their physique and on the type of examination that is required. It is therefore not possible to specify 'correct' or 'safe' doses for examinations of different parts of the body which are generally applicable to all patients. Rather, an x-ray examination should first be justified by ensuring that there is a clear medical benefit to the patient and then the dose should be kept as low as reasonably practicable without compromising the diagnostic value.

If patients are concerned about the possible risks from having an x-ray examination they should seek reassurance from their doctor that the examination is indeed necessary and that it is likely to yield useful diagnostic information. All reasonable steps should be taken to minimise these risks and to be sure that the x-ray examination is justified in terms of an overriding health benefit to the patient. In most cases the risk to the patient's health from not obtaining an accurate diagnosis by foregoing or restricting the use of x-rays, will be much greater than the very small risks from the radiation.  Further information may be obtained from arpansa.gov.au.

What are the radiation risks associated with medical x-ray examinations?

The risks from medical x-ray examinations are generally extremely low, being in the nature of a very slight increase in the probability of cancer occurring many years or decades after the radiation exposure. Unfortunately, we all have a one in four chance of dying from cancer whatever the cause may be, so an x-ray examination will merely serve to increase this relatively large underlying risk by a very small amount. For the most common x-ray examinations, such as those of the arms, legs, chest or teeth, the radiation doses are very low and the increased risk is insignificant at less than the one in a million level.

Even for high-dose examinations involving many x-ray films and fluoroscopy (for example, barium enemas) or computed tomography scans (CT scans) of a substantial part of the body, the risk is no more than about one in a few thousand. Typical lifetime additional risks for a number of common x-ray examinations are shown at hpa.org.uk.

Are x-rays harmful?

X-rays are a type of ionising radiation and as such they have the potential to alter chemical structure in cells. In general the radiation dose in the vast majority of x-ray examinations is very small- much less than the background radiation dose. For an excellent explanation of the safety of x-rays go to hpa.org.uk and download the publication on x-ray safety.

Where can I find out information regarding my procedure?

Under the section entitled 'Procedures' there is some information regarding the most commonly performed x-ray procedures. If you are interested in obtaining further information you can visit one of the internationally recognised websites such as the one sponsored by ACR and RSNA www.radiologyinfo.org. However, please be aware that procedures are not always performed the same way in every practice.