I had to grit my teeth and dip into my private insurance - which I have to cover emergencies and ambulance - and get it done privately, thus abandining Medicare.
This has nothing to do with Medicare. It's because the Base Hospital is run by Western Area Health who can't organize a piss-up in a brewery and waste a fortune on admin while doctors and suppliers go unpaid. Medicare, a Federal body, has no say in the running of WAH, which is a State body. The surgeons at the Base Hospital (including my surgeon) wanted to set aside one theatre for emergency operations but WAH decided it would be too much lost revinue and denied their request, adding that if they insisted then the doctor's contracts will not be renewed. So now the Base Hosptial is down to one surgeon and all but essential surgeries are cancelled.
So I have to go private - with increased insurance premiums and excesses and a gap between the doctor's bill and my insurance payment - if I want this to happen this year.