In November 2006, the Australian Federal Government introduced Medicare item numbers providing for psychological services to be rebated under Medicare. The Australian Psychological Society has a fact sheet outlining this scheme.
In short, people who believe they might benefit from consulting a psychologist can request an assessment by their (or any) GP unde the Better Access to Mental Health Services or ATAPS initiative. If eligible, the GP will put the person on a Mental Health Care Plan in either program and refer the client to a psychologist for individualized psychological treatment. The GP and the psychologist work in collaboration. The GP will write his/her findings and recommendations on a referral letter to the psychologist and the psychologist will write brief letters back to the GP, such as after six sessions providing a review of treatment progress and outcomes and/or to request further sessions. The number of sessions that are rebatable in a calendar year varies between 6 & 18 depending on the scheme chosen by the GP. At present there is a separate allocation of rebates for group sessions as well.
In terms of cost, every Psychologist sets their own price. It is common for there to be a fee above the rebate or 'Gap payment'. Some schemes such as ATAPS set a cap or limit to what can be charged above the rebate. Some Psychologists 'bulk bill' (accept the rebate only as their fee).
Please contact Deli on 0423 778 208 or email@example.com to enquire about Medicare rebates, private health insurance refunds and all questions regarding appointments, fees and methods of payment.
'Mental Health' minded Doctors
More and more General Medical practises and individual GP's are aware of, and value, effective psychological services. They are conversant in 'Better Access to Mental Health' & other Federal Government initiatives and willing to 'go the extra mile' to refer a client appropriately into such a program. Deli Baker has many strong collaborative relationships with Doctor's in and around Melbourne.
Please contact Deli on 0423 778 208 or firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire about Doctors who are 'mental health' minded and show a strong commitment to psychology and collaboration between general medical and mental health as a means for helping and supporting clients.