Seeing a Psychologist can be more affordable than you think
Depending on your individual circumstances there are several ways that you can access psychology services, including through:
Medicare “Better Access to Mental Health Care Initiative”
MindTree Psychologists are registered with Medicare and provide psychological services under the Better Access to Mental Health Care Initiative. This scheme provides greater access to Psychologists and more affordable mental healthcare. Eligible clients receive a rebate of $129.55 for up to ten individual sessions per calendar year. This reduces your out-of-pocket costs to $94.45 per session. Medicare rebates are available for number of mental health issues, including persisting feelings of anxiety and depression, difficulty adjusting to life changes (e.g., relationship breakups, job loss, passing of a loved one, etc.), post-traumatic stress, substance use and addiction, sleep problems, and sexual dysfunction.
Steps for Accessing Psychological Services Under Medicare
- See your GP. If you believe you would benefit from seeing a Psychologist, the first step is to make an appointment with your GP. We recommend requesting an extended appointment, as it can take some time to get all the information needed to prepare the referral. Your GP will assess whether you are eligible for a referral to see a Psychologist given your healthcare needs and circumstances. This will involve talking about your mental health and any concerns or challenges you might be facing. Additionally, you will most likely be asked to complete a questionnaire about how you have been feeling recently. If your GP determines that seeing a Psychologist can assist you, he or she will provide you with a document known as a Mental Health Treatment Plan. This will enable you to claim $129.55 for each session with your Psychologist. All referral documents should be made out to either “MindTree Psychology” or the specific Psychologist you would like to see.
- Get in touch. The next step is to get in touch with our practice and make an appointment. Your GP may fax us your Mental Health Treatment Plan prior to your appointment or give it to you to bring along. It is important to be aware that in order to claim the Medicare rebate for your sessions, we require a copy of your referral at the time of your appointment. Unfortunately, we are unable to process your rebate without this paperwork. You will also need to bring your Medicare and EFTPOS cards. We use an electronic claiming service, so you can claim your rebate and have it deposited into your bank account immediately. This means that you only pay the gap fee at the time of your appointment.
- Check back in with your GP. Your Mental Health Treatment Plan entitles you to claim up to six sessions with a Psychologist through Medicare. After your sixth appointment, your Psychologist will provide a report to your GP regarding the progress therapy and whether additional sessions are needed. A person may claim up to 10 sessions with Psychologist per calendar year (January 1 to December 31). This means that you can return to your GP and request a new referral for an additional four sessions, if necessary.
Clients who are referred to MindTree Psychology by their Psychiatrist or Paediatrician are also eligible to receive the Medicare rebate and do not require a GP Mental Health Treatment Plan. For further information regarding Medicare rebates, click here for a fact sheet prepared by the Australian Psychological Society. Alternatively, you are welcome to get in touch with our practice. We would be only too happy to step you through the process and answer any questions you might have.
Private Health Funds
MindTree Psychology is registered with most private health funds. If you have private health insurance that includes psychological counselling as extras cover you may be eligible for a partial rebate. Rebates from private health funds will vary, depending on the health fund and the level of insurance cover. We recommend contacting your insurance provider for further information about your personal coverage and the rebates you are entitled to.
MindTree Psychology is committed to making psychological services available to all people, irrespective of their financial situation. We offer a limited number of reduced-fee appointments, which reduces out-of-pocket costs to clients who undergoing financial hardship.
Our reduced-fee services are reserved for Concession and Health Care Card holders, including clients who receive an age or disability pension, are unemployed, or a full-time tertiary student. We have limited reduced-fee appointments available, but do our best to accommodate people’s needs. Please note, we are not a bulk-billing practice.