New one-stop shop for Toowoomba

Toowoomba residents will be able to do more government business in the one place when Clifford Gardens Medicare moves into the Toowoomba Service Centre at 12 Bell Street on Monday 9 February.

Department of Human Services General Manager Hank Jongen said Toowoomba will join over 165 communities around the country that are already benefitting from one-stop shops.

“The move to bring our services together is reflective of community expectation for more convenience when dealing with government services,” Mr Jongen said.

“Since 2009, we’ve established more than 165 one-stop shops around the country – meaning customers are able to obtain access to more services from a single entry point.”

Mr Jongen said customers are also taking advantage of online services and digital claiming options, meaning for many customers there is no need to visit a service centre on a regular basis.

“Through myGov customers can access a range of government services with a single log on and password. This, together with the increase in electronic Medicare claiming, means the demand for face-to-face services has decreased,” Mr Jongen said.

“In Toowoomba for example, the number of customers using electronic claiming has increased from 70 per cent in December 2013 to over 80 per cent in December 2014.

“Nationally, in the last financial year, more than 93 per cent of all Medicare services were claimed electronically.

“The decrease in customers coming into our service centres, combined with the end of our lease at the Clifford Gardens Shopping Centre, has contributed to the decision to consolidate our services into the Toowoomba Service Centre in Bell Street.”

Mr Jongen encouraged residents to familiarise themselves with the range of service options available.

“While the best way to claim your Medicare rebate is at your doctor’s, I also encourage locals to check out the range of digital services available through myGov and the Department of Human Services Express Plus apps,” Mr Jongen said.

“While these alternative service options are available, staff at the Toowoomba Service Centre continue to provide face-to-face services to those who require more personalised or intensive support.”

The Toowoomba Service Centre will be open Monday to Friday, from 8.30am to 4.30pm.