MRI Scans and DVA approval

The following I received this morning from a former 3RAR member.

Ever been to your GP to get an MRI test only to be told that you need to see a specialist. There is a way to eliminate this time-wasting and DVA Health approvals will approve this.

GP’s can issue a referral for Xrays CT scans but not MRI’s. So, the system at the moment is your GP refers you to a specialist simply to get a document signed for an MRI.

Specialist appointments, on average, are months in advance. This document is booked to an imagining service – often 3 weeks wait. Then there is DVA approval which is also about 3 weeks wait to be processed. The time taken to get an imaging service can take up to 3 months, especially with Christmas approaching.

I rang DVA Health approvals and explained this to them … there is a way to cut out the waiting time being …

On the imaging service request form your GP simply request MRI AND THE NAME OF THE REFERRING SPECIALIST ON THE FORM – then take to imaging service for processing. DVA Health Approvals WILL accept this.

The benefits are- No waiting time for the veteran… mental peace of mind … DVA have saved money by not having to pay for a specialist simply to write an MRI form and when it is time to see the specialist… All information is ready for that consultation.


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  • Bruce Cameron November 29, 2021  

    Well done ‘former 3RAR member’!
    It’s by such initiative and sharing that continual improvement comes about.

  • Colin Butterworth November 29, 2021  

    I also have been asking my Dr for MRI mainly because I have been sent for X-rays and Ultrasounds by my Dr. His excuse is that MRI’s are much more expensive and in maximum demand. All bloody BS.
    Thanks for this info as I will show it to my Dr on this Wednesday, be interesting to hear his statement.

  • James Still November 30, 2021  

    I recently had to have knee surgery that required an MRI. I was sent by my doctor for the MRI and found out when attending that I would have to pay for it then claim it back from DVA as a specialist had not requested the MRI. I paid for it as to wait for an appointment for the specialist would have been protracted and I was unable to walk properly at the time due to the pain etc.
    This is good news , I have been waiting for reimbursement for three months now.

  • Ross Bills (DVA LMO) November 30, 2021  

    As a DVA GP LMO i find it frustrating when I know an MRI is needed or is the best option, but you face delays (especially in the country). This will help me. I assume that the referring specialist will be the specialist the serviceperson or ex-serviceperson is being referred to. The GP would also need to confirm with the specialist that he agrees to the referral I thought. Not quite as simple, but certainly much more achievable. The easy option for the GP to clarify all this is for the GP to ring DVA to seek advanced approval. Then it can proceed at no cost to the patient. My other workaround has been to ring the specialist and ask him to write the request for the patient and forward it. For new patients this has been difficult of course. Bureaucracy is ALWAYS with us.

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