Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some answers to some common questions. If you can not find the answers you are looking for below, please don't hesitate to contact us.

What is a counsellor?

All counsellors do not have the same standard of training or accreditation. Our counsellors are tertiary educated, experienced practitioners. They are fully accredited members of their industry Associations. They are also fully accredited Work Cover providers. They have extensive experience in both mental health and relationship counselling.

What is a registered psychologist?

All psychologists are legally required to register with the Psychologist Registration Board of Australia, in the same way medical practitioners must be registered. This means they must be competent and follow a strict Code of Conduct. Not all counsellors or therapists are registered psychologists.

Fees?

Fees apply to our services, these are available on request

Our psychologists are all registered with Medicare’s BETTER ACCESS Program We are able to offer a Medicare rebate with a Mental Health Treatment Plan and referral from a GP. Bulk billing may be available in cases of financial hardship.

Most of our psychologists are also registered providers with Medicare’s ATAPS Program (Access to Allied Psychological Services). There are no additional charges with an ATAPS referral.

Your doctor will advise which Medicare program is appropriate

Private health insurance rebates apply with our psychologists and counsellors for clients with the appropriate cover.

Our psychologists and counsellors are registered to provide counselling under the WorkCover scheme.

Fees are negotiable for low income earners and those experiencing financial hardship.

Psychologists and Medicare

Better Access to Psychologists  

In November 2006, new Medicare items were introduced for psychological treatment by registered psychologists. The service will provide considerable assistance to people who require these services allowing them greater access to counselling and other psychological services.

Can I claim a Medicare rebate for my appointments with a psychologist?
To claim a Medicare rebate for psychological services, you must have a special kind of referral from your GP, a psychiatrist or a paediatrician, which is called a Mental Health Treatment Plan

How many sessions with a psychologist am I entitled to?
Eligible patients can generally receive:
– Up to 10 individual services in a calendar year. Your doctor will assess your progress after the first six sessions.

What will it cost me?
Rebates vary slightly depending upon a number of factors. Please discuss with our staff. Further information on the Better Access initiative is available at:

http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/mental-ba-fact-pat

Access to Allied Psychological Services (ATAPS)

Through ATAPS, patients are eligible for a maximum of 12 sessions per calendar year – six time-limited sessions with an option for a further six sessions following a mental health review by the referring GP. In addition, the referring practitioner may consider that in exceptional circumstances the patient may require an additional six individual focussed psychological strategies services above those already provided (a maximum total of 18 individual services per patient per calendar year). It is up to the referring practitioner to determine that the patient meets these requirements.

What will it cost me?

There are no out-of –pocket expenses for clients with an ATAPS referral

Further information on the ATAPS initiative is available at:

http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/mental-boimhc-ataps

Can I use Private Health Insurance?

You cannot use both private health insurance ancillary cover, and the Medicare rebate for psychology services. You need to decide whether you will use Medicare, or your private health insurance ancillary cover to pay for psychological services you receive. You can either access rebates from Medicare by following the claiming process, or claim where available on your insurer’s ancillary benefits.

What Payment Options do you have?

You may pay by cash, credit card (Visa or Mastercard), cheque or debit card.

With our HiCaps facility, all Medicare rebates are processed at the time of your visit (so you don’t have to queue up at a Medicare office!)

Do you accept referals from specific programs?

Yes. You may be eligible for referral to psychological services through other specific programs. Such as:

  • Department of Veterans Affairs (if you are a returned Service Person),
  • Victim’s Services (if you have been the victim of a violent crime)
  • WorkCover (if it is a workplace compensation matter)