Frequently asked questions

What is Psychology?

According to the Australian Psychological Society "The goal of psychology is not just to study human thinking and behaviour, but to put that knowledge into practice to help people, communities and society in general to solve day-to-day problems and improve quality of life". Psychology is therefore also a profession devoted to helping people and the community find solutions to real life problems such as improving mental health, wellbeing, learning, performance, relationships, and societal cohesiveness".

What does a Clinical Psychologist do?

A large number of psychologists fulfil some type of therapeutic role, assessing their clients' concerns and life circumstances, and offering support, advice and treatment to address their clients' issues.

For example, many psychologists work directly with people:

  • To assist with depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and other mental health issues.
  • To evaluate the needs of older adults with declining memory and offer advice to families and carers on how to adjust the living environment to aid independence and safety.
  • To address concerns with burnout.
  • To work with children, parents and teachers to address learning or behaviour problems at school.

How long does each therapy session take?

Standard sessions last approximately 50 min. Longer and shorter sessions are also available on request.

What are my rights as a client?

The Charter for Clients of APS Psychologists outlines the standards that clients of APS psychologists may expect.
The charter covers concepts such as clear explanations of fees, confidentiality and informed consent. View more information here.

Do I need a referral?

No. Anyone can self-refer to our service. However, a referral from your GP, Paediatrician or Psychiatrist might assist you in accessing funding and therefore significantly reducing your out of pocket expense.

Is there any funding available?

Better Access To Mental Health Care; This Medicare initiative is available for individuals with an assessed mental condition that is being managed by a GP, Paediatrician or Psychiatrist under a Mental Health Care Plan. Eligible individuals can receive Medicare rebates for up to 10 individual and/or group sessions per calendar year. Plus an additional 10 sessions in the context of Covid. Chronic Disease Management; This initiative assists people living with a chronic or complex medical illness. Medicare rebates are available for up to five visits (in total) within a calendar year, to certain allied health professionals assisting in the care and management of a chronic disease. Your GP is required to prepare a chronic disease management plan (or Team Care Arrangement). Pregnancy Support Counselling; This scheme is available for women with a current or recent pregnancy (within the last 12 months) who have any concerns, such as decisions about the future, adjustment following the pregnancy, or general issues related to a pregnancy. The partner of the client can also attend the counselling session, if appropriate. Medicare rebates are available for up to 3 visits per pregnancy, following a GP referral. Helping Children with Autism (HCWA); This Medicare program assists in the early diagnosis and treatment of children with autism or any other pervasive developmental disorder. Under this program up to four diagnostic/assessment services and up to 20 treatment services provided by psychologists and other allied health professionals are available, to assist the referring practitioner with diagnosis or to contribute to a child’s treatment and management plan. Better Start for Children with Disability; This Medicare scheme aims to provide early intervention to children with a range of disabilities and developmental delays. Under this program, up to four diagnostic/assessment sessions and up to 20 treatment sessions provided by psychologists and other allied health professionals are available to assist the referring practitioner with diagnosis, or to contribute to a child’s treatment and management plan. People of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Descent; Medicare rebates are available for up to an extra five allied health services in total per calendar year for indigenous people who have had a health assessment from their GP and require follow-up allied health services. National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS); The NDIS aims to provide community linking and individualised support for people with permanent and significant disability, their families and carers. Individuals with an NDIA approved plan can use their funding for psychological therapy when it has been identified as a needed support. We are a registered provider. For more information on NDIS click here www.ndis.gov.au

Workcover and Department of Veteran Affairs; When appropriate, psychology services can be fully funded by organisations such as Workcover or DVA.

Eating Disorders; This scheme is available for individuals with an assessed eating disorder that is being managed by a GP, Paediatrician or Psychiatrist under an Eating Disorder Treatment and Management Plan (EDP). Eligible individuals can receive Medicare rebates for up to 40 sessions in a 12-month period.

Bushfire Recovery Access; This Initiative offers up to 10 Medicare rebatable services available in each calendar year for two years (2020 and 2021), for those affected by the bushfires of 2019-2020. No referral required.

Can I access psychological support via video conference or phone call?

Yes. Telehealth is available on request. Medicare rebates apply.

What is the difference between Psychology and Psychiatry?

There are many similarities between psychology and psychiatry, which is why they can commonly be confused with each other. The main point of difference between psychology and psychiatry is the practitioner’s education and approach to treatment.

A psychiatrist is a person that studied first to become a medical doctor, and then went on to further training to specialise in the treatment of mental health concerns (psychiatry). A psychiatrist has learned to recognise, diagnose and treat mental health disorders. A psychiatrist can prescribe medications and can admit you to hospital if needed, whereas a psychologist cannot.

Both a psychiatrists and psychologists are fully trained to understand how the brain works and are competent in using different types of counselling and psychotherapy.

Many clients benefit from the dual care of a psychiatrist (where medication is indicated) and a psychologist. It is, however, an individualised process and should be discussed with your health care provider.