FAQ

What is a clinical psychologist?

Clinical psychologists have completed a minimum of 6 years of university training, and has been supervised for a further two years while working in a mental health setting. Clinical psychologists have training in the assessment and diagnosis of major mental illnesses and psychological problems. They are trained in the delivery of a range of techniques and therapies with demonstrated effectiveness in treating mental health disorders. They hold particular skills for applying psychological theory and scientific research to solve complex clinical psychology problems requiring individually tailored intervention.

How long does each session go for?

A standard session goes for 50 minutes. We then allow another 10 minutes to schedule further sessions (if needed) and to complete billing.

What will happen at the first appointment?

The psychologist will focus on getting to know you/you and your child and helping you to feel at ease talking to us. During the first appointment, your psychologist will ask about the reason that you have come along, as well as asking about other areas of your life such as family, school, work, interests, health and and relationships. Asking about these things helps the psychologist to better understand how your problem or concern fits with the rest of your life and how they can best help you. By the end of the session they will try to give you an idea of what they think will be helpful and how you can work on any problems together.

What will happen in follow-up sessions?

Following your initial session, your psychologist will share with you their ideas about the problem or concern that you have come about and outline their suggestions for things that will help. These might include different therapeutic approaches or strategies. Together you can then agree on a plan to work on these things together. Your sessions might involve talking, doing some exercises together, or for younger children, play or drawing. Your psychologist will check in regularly to see how you are finding the sessions, and it is important that you give feedback so that the treatment can be adjusted to best suit you.

Are sessions confidential?

All information gathered by a psychologist during the provision of psychological services will remain confidential and securely stored. Exceptions to confidentiality arise when:

  • Information obtained by the psychologist is subpoenaed by a court or required by law
  • Failure to disclose the information would place the client or another person at serious and imminent risk to life, health or safety
  • The client (or guardian’s) consent has been obtained to
    • Provide a written report to you or to another professional or agency (e.g., lawyer, school, doctor)
    • Discuss information with another person (e.g., school, other professional, health services etc)
  • Disclosure is otherwise required or authorised by law.

 

For clients who are under the age of 18 years of age, exceptions to confidentiality also arise when:

  • A client under the age of 18 discloses engaging in deliberate self-harm or having suicidal thoughts or plans. In this instance their parents or guardians will be informed by the psychologist
  • A client under the age of 18 discloses any form of child abuse. In this instance the psychologist is obliged to notify the Child Abuse Report Line in their role as a mandatory notifier of child abuse.

Please note that if a medical practitioner, paediatrician or psychiatrist has referred you under a Mental Health Care Plan, then it is a Medicare requirement that that the psychologist provide a written report to the referrer after the 6th and 10th sessions.

Although sessions with children and young people are confidential, we endeavour to involve parents and caregivers as much as possible with the consent of the young person.

Will you see my child alone, or will I be a part of the session?

This is usually decided on a case-by-case basis. Younger children are usually seen with their parents for the first session unless there is a reason why they do not want this to occur. Following this, sessions may be a combination of you being seen alone and together and this will be negotiated with you and your child.

Teenagers are able to decide for themselves if they want their parents to be involved in the first session. We will discuss the options with you upon your arrival and help you to make your decision. We always try to involve parents and caregivers as much as possible, and to provide parents with some feedback. Where a teenager does not want to have their parent involved in sessions, we endeavour to provide some general feedback to parents about the therapy process and their child’s progress while still respecting the teenager’s right to confidentiality.

How many sessions will I or my child need?

This varies between individuals and the type of concern being addressed. Your psychologist may be able to give you a better idea of this following your initial session.

How do I make an appointment?

You can make an appointment by calling us on 83542229 or emailing us at info@umbrellapsychology.com.au. If you are emailing about making your first appointment, we will use email to make a time to call you back to discuss your concerns before booking the appointment.

Do I need a referral to see a psychologist?

No, you do not need a referral to see a psychologist. However, you are not entitled to claim Medicare rebates without the appropriate referral from a medical practitioner. You may still be able to claim rebates from your Private Health Fund.

How much does a psychology session cost?

Please call us to discuss our fees. You may be entitled to a Medicare rebate or can claim part of the cost from your Private Health Provider. Umbrella Psychology does not provide bulk billing or concessions for Health Care Card holders.

What is the Medicare rebate?

The Medicare rebate makes accessing psychology sessions more affordable by offering rebates for up to 10 sessions in a calendar year (January to December). The Medicare rebate for a standard (50 minute) clinical psychology consult is currently $124.50 but this may increase if you have reached the Medicare Safety Net Threshold for the calendar year. Visit www.psychology.org.au/public/cost for further information.

How do I access the Medicare rebate?

To access the Medicare rebate, you need a type of referral from a your General Practitioner (GP) called a Mental Health Care Plan. Some paediatricians and psychiatrists can also write Mental Health Care Plans. This plan involves your doctor providing a mental health diagnosis. It is recommended that you advise that you are seeking a Mental Health Care Plan at the time that you book an appointment with your doctor, or that you schedule an extended consultation time to complete the plan.

We require “up front” (full) payment of your session fee on the day of your appointment. Once we receive a copy of a Mental Health Care Plan that is dated before the session date, we are able to submit your claim to Medicare electronically and Medicare then refund you the rebate amount to which you are entitled.

Can I claim Private Health Insurance rebates?

The psychologist will focus on getting to know you/you and your child and helping you to feel at ease talking to us. During the first appointment, your psychologist will ask about the reason that you have come along, as well as asking about other areas of your life such as family, school, work, interests, health and and relationships. Asking about these things helps the psychologist to better understand how your problem or concern fits with the rest of your life and how they can best help you. By the end of the session they will try to give you an idea of what they think will be helpful and how you can work on any problems together.

What are the cancellation fees?

Cancellations with over 24 hours notice will not attract a cancellation fee.

Cancellations within 24 hours will have a fee of $80

Non attendance of a session without notice will be charged the full fee (and this is not able to be rebated by Medicare)

Can I request reports?

Reports are available for some purposes. You should discuss your report request with your psychologist. There may be a report-writing fee and full payment may be required before the report is released.

Do you have disability access?

We have disability access via the rear of the building. Please advise upon booking if this is required.

Who should I contact in an emergency or crisis situation?

If it is regarding a person under the age of 18 years, then you should contact the Women’s and Children’s Hospital on 8161 7000 and ask to speak to the Emergency Mental Health Nurse. Alternatively, you can attend the Emergency Department in person.

 

If it is regarding a person over the age of 18 years, then you should call the Assessment and Crisis Intervention Service (ACIS) on 13 14 65. Alternatively you can attend the emergency department of your local hospital.

 

Other numbers that you can call are:

            Kids Helpline (for under 18’s):       1800 55 1800

            Lifeline (for over 18’s):                     13 11 14