Radiation Oncology Health Program Grants (ROHPG)

The ROHPG Scheme offers funding to approved providers for eligible high-cost equipment used in the delivery of radiation therapy.

Page last updated: 19 December 2019

This section includes information about the:
ROHPG Scheme
2017-18 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook – ROHPG Scheme
ROHPG Scheme administrative arrangements effective 1 July 2017
ROHPG Transitional Arrangements
ROHPG Administrative Guidelines (effective 1 January 2020
Application Process
Assessment of Priority Areas (Areas of Need)
2016-17 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook – ROHPG Scheme
Review of ROHPG Scheme

ROHPG Scheme

The Scheme was introduced in 1988 as an alternative mechanism for the Commonwealth Government to fund radiotherapy services outside the Medicare arrangements. The Scheme provides a contribution towards the capital cost of eligible radiation therapy equipment. Payments are in addition to Medicare rebates that patients receive for radiotherapy services. Medicare benefits are for the professional and operating costs of services and do not include funding for the cost of equipment used in providing these services.

Radiation Treatment Facility Locations

The ROHPG Scheme is established and administered under Part IV of the Health Insurance Act 1973 (the Act) and is open to public and private providers who are recognised as an ‘approved health service’ (at a specific location) under the Act.

2017-18 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook – ROHPG Scheme

The Government announced in the 2017-18 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook that it will realign funding provided by the ROHPG Scheme for private sector linear accelerators. The measure is estimated to cost $4.5 million over four years.

Private radiotherapy providers will receive the $3 million capital contribution for linear accelerators over an eight year period. This funding arrangement will apply for all private sector linear accelerators approved under the post 1 July 2017 ROHPG arrangements until 30 June 2021, when the Scheme’s funding arrangements will be reviewed.

ROHPG Scheme administrative arrangements effective 1 July 2017

Following a review of the ROHPG Scheme in 2016, the Australian Government made changes to the ROPHG Scheme as part of its 2016-17 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook. The new arrangements link funding towards high-cost linear accelerators and direct these funds to priority areas as agreed to by states and territories. The new Scheme arrangements will keep the Commonwealth capital contribution for radiation oncology sustainable into the future.

The key elements of the ROHPG Scheme for equipment approved under the new arrangements are:

  • The Commonwealth will provide a set capital contribution value of $3 million for linear accelerators.
  • The new capital contribution amount of $300,000 per year (for up to 10 years or $375,000 per year for up to 8 years for private providers, as announced in the 2017-18 MYEFO), will apply to linear accelerators for which applications were submitted and approved after 1 July 2017.
  • Capital payments will be made annually for a 10 year period (or an 8 year period for private providers, as announced in the 2017-18 MYEFO). This compares to the previous arrangement where monthly capital payments were made based on the volume of Medicare services up to a capital balance amount. ROHPG funding is no longer linked to MBS items.
  • Providers with capital equipment that was approved prior to 1 July 2017 will continue to receive capital contribution payments based on the equipment’s remaining capital balance. Further information is provided under the ROHPG Transitional Arrangements section below.
Further information on the ROHPG Scheme arrangements and applications is available by emailing the Radiation Oncology Section.

ROHPG Transitional Arrangements

Radiotherapy capital equipment, approved under the pre 1 July 2017 arrangements, excluding networked information systems, will continue to be funded under the old ROHPG arrangements post 1 July 2017. This means:
  • Payments for existing capital equipment will continue up to each equipment’s remaining capital balance.
  • The new post 1 July 2017 ROHPG arrangements only apply to new or replacement equipment for which ROHPG funding is sought after 1 July 2017.

ROHPG Administrative Guidelines (effective 1 January 2020)

The ROHPG Administrative Guidelines have been updated to reflect the new arrangements. The revised ROHPG Guidelines (effective 1 January 2020) are below:

PDF Version: ROHPG Administrative Guidelines (PDF 207 KB)
Word Version: ROHPG Administrative Guidelines (Word 437 KB)

Application Process

Applications are assessed on an individual basis against the ROHPG Guidelines.

Applications must be made using the appropriate ROHPG prescribed application form.

To apply for approval of an organisation under section 40 of the Health Insurance Act 1973 please use the following form:

Application Form Section 40 ROHPG SCHEME effective 1 January 2020 (Word 118 KB)

To apply for approval of a new health service under section 41 of the Health Insurance Act 1973 or for a variation to an approved health service (i.e. an additional linear accelerator, replacement of a linear accelerator relocation of a health service), please use this form:

ROHPG Scheme application form (new, expansion, relocation and replacement) effective 1 January 2020 (Word 131 KB)

To apply for approval of an organisation under section 40 of the Health Insurance Act 1973 due to a transfer of ownership or control of an existing facility, please use this form:

Transfer of Ownership application form effective 1 January 2020 (Word 118 KB)

All ROHPG applications can be mailed to:
    Director
    Radiation Therapy and Medical Indemnity Section
    MBS Policy and Specialist Services Branch
    Medical Benefits Division
    Department of Health
    MDP 861, GPO Box 9848
    CANBERRA ACT 2601

Alternatively, applications can be emailed to radiation.oncology@health.gov.au.

Assessment of Priority Areas

All applications for new facilities and linear accelerators submitted from 1 July 2017 will need to demonstrate that the respective state or territory has been consulted prior to submission to the Commonwealth for approval. The Department of Health may also seek further advice from the relevant state or territory as part of its assessment. Applications received for areas considered to be a priority will be given preference.

It is noted that under the Health Insurance Act 1973, the Commonwealth is obliged to consider the merits of all applications received for ROHPG funding and all applications received will be considered by the Department of Health.

As agreed with states and territories, priority areas are published on the Australian Government Department of Health website to assist radiotherapy providers to target areas of need when applying for ROHPG funding.

Assessment of Priority Areas within Australia until 2020-21

2016-17 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook – ROHPG Scheme

Further information about the MYEFO announcement regarding the changes to the ROHPG Scheme can be obtained on the 2016-17 MYEFO – Radiation Oncology Health Program Grants (ROHPG) Scheme webpage.

Review of the ROHPG Scheme

A copy of the review report is available on the 2016 Review of the Radiation Oncology Health Program Grants (ROHPG) Scheme web page.