Medicare Basics & FAQ
You do not need a GP referral to see a psychologist....BUT.... if you want to receive a Medicare Rebate ($92.90) after paying for your session, then you do need to be referred by a GP before your first session.
The referral type used by all GPs is called a Mental Health Treatment Plan (MHTP).
All Medicare rebates are processed through our online agreement with Medicare.
This is done at the end of your appointment after first paying the agreed fee.
No need for your to find time in your busy schedule to visit Medicare to claim your rebate.
What is counselling?Counselling is a journey, not a race, where you invite your psychologist into your life. You tell them as much about yourself as you feel comfortable with. As you get to know them you will probably feel like you can tell them more, or even everything about you. Obviously the more they know about you the better they can assist you on this journey. Your privacy and confidentiality about what you share is ethically guaranteed. As your psychologist gets to know you better, they will decide on an approach (evidence-based) which will suit your individual needs. This will help you achieve your counselling goals. Your psychologist will sometimes give you a questionnaire or some form of assessment for you to complete, so that they can objectively learn more about you. These are just some of the tools of their profession. Through the counselling process you will get to better understand your feelings, thoughts and behaviours. You will learn new skills or improve on old ones, so that you can better manage life's challenges. Over time you will start to notice how your brain is making changes as it builds new pathways for these new skills. Like anything else in life, using opportunities to practice these new skills will improve your ability to keep doing them in the future. Counselling is for anyone and everyone.
Counselling for everyone and anyoneScience is opening up the world of psychology, not just for psychologists, but also for the general public. New research is helping the image of psychology move away from 'psycho-babble' to 'psych-science'. The brain has the ability to change and develop throughout our lives, so there is no need to feel 'destined and doomed' or 'trapped' in your thoughts, feelings and behaviours. We can change almost anything, if we put our mind/brain to it. Psychologists are more excited than ever about their ability to help you. Counselling is not just about finding out how to manage things when life goes 'wrong', but to also replicate what works well when life goes 'right'. There is now a global psychology network to learn from, not just our parents or our local community.
Individual counselling goalsCounselling is never about changing the 'essence' of you. It is about helping you discover the skills and strategies that let the 'real' you shine through. Anna's aim in counselling is: to help you reach your counselling goals not just what she thinks you need (evidence-based), but what you know you would like to achieve.
Completing counsellingThere is no magic number of sessions at which counselling is completed. It is something you and Anna will discuss and agree upon. If you are in counselling for a 'speed-bump' that upset your life's journey, then counselling may be short (4-6 sessions). If you are in counselling because there has been a 'volcano eruption', possibly over many years and now a huge 'mountain' is blocking your life's journey, then counselling may be more intense and last from a few months to a few years. Counselling is not a race, it is a journey which often has you supported with occasional 'maintenance' counselling, long after the initial sessions have passed. Once counselling is completed Anna will send a 'Counselling Completed' letter to your GP, to mark the end of the process. Counselling completion is not a shut door. You are always welcome to contact Anna at any time after 'Counselling Completion' if you need continued support. Just ike at the gym, you may need a personal trainer at the start, but eventually you will just need them now an then - when you forget how, or need more support when you are stuck. Counselling is just the same.
Re-entering counsellingReturning to counselling does not mean that you, your psychologist, or counselling has previously failed. It is like going back to the gym after a long absence and needing a personal trainer to get you back on track. You know what you could be doing, but you might just need to be motivated again. At other times you might not have had a good fit with your psychologist, just like you might not click with every GP you have ever had. So get a new one. Psychologists are professionals and know and accept that they can't be everything to everyone. If it's not working out...change your psychologist or come and speak to Anna.