FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
About Psychological Therapy
WHY DO PEOPLE SEE A PSYCHOLOGIST?
People see psychologists for a broad range of reasons, from wanting to learn stress management and communication skills, to dealing with chronic mental health conditions such as Major Depressive Disorder and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder.
WHAT TYPES OF PROBLEMS DO YOU HELP PEOPLE WITH?
At Catherine Bushnell Psychology we enjoy helping clients learn to manage a variety of mental health problems, including:
· Bipolar affective disorder
· Anxiety disorders (including Generalised Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Social Phobia, Specific Phobias)
· Post-traumatic stress disorder
· Adjustment Disorders (changes in life situations – e.g., job loss, divorces/separation, retirement, birth of children)
· Grief and loss
· Work stress
· Relationship problems
· Low self-esteem
· Communication problems
WHAT TYPES OF THERAPY DO YOU USE?
Scientific research conducted over the last 100+ years has shown many different psychotherapy approaches to be effective in managing psychological problems. Some of the evidence-based approaches that we use include:·
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), including Trauma-focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (TF-CBT)·
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)·
Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)·
HOW CAN THERAPY WITH A PSYCHOLOGIST HELP?
· Science has shown that many mental disorders are linked to the activation of negative neural networks in the brain and unhelpful thinking patterns and behaviour, which can lead people to experience anxiety, depression and other mental health problems.
· Good news: Science shows that psychotherapy can help train our brain's neurons to change the way in which they function, and that by changing our patterns of thought and behaviour we can create healthier neural networks and happier, calmer states of mind.
· Psychotherapy can help you to learn to understand your mind and behaviour and to learn new ways of managing stress. You can also learn to relate to yourself and others in ways that reduce tension and distress. It is important to realise that making changes takes time and effort, and that in order to receive a benefit from psychotherapy you will need to put time into practicing new skills and trying different approaches outside of sessions.
HOW MANY SESSIONS WILL I NEED TO ATTEND?
The number of sessions that you attend will depend on the type and complexity of the issue(s) that you wish to address. On average, clients will attend between six and twelve 50-minute sessions to address one mental health issue (e.g., Depression, Anxiety). Further sessions may be necessary to address more than one main mental health issue, or if the issue is deeply ingrained (e.g., if it originates from childhood trauma or complex trauma). The number of sessions that you attend will be discussed with you at your first session.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
Please call the clinic to learn about our current rates.
A Medicare rebate (covering approximately 65% of the full fee) is available for up to 10 x 50-minute therapy sessions per calendar year for clients who are referred to a clinical psychologist by a GP under a Mental Health Care Plan. Please note that Medicare does not cover assessments or reports. Private health fund member may also be able to claim a rebate from their private health fund. Please check with your health fund.
CAN I BRING SOMEONE ELSE WITH ME TO MY PSYCHOLOGY SESSIONS?
You are welcome to bring a support person with you to your first session, such as a partner or parent, if this makes you feel more comfortable. In general, however, individual therapy sessions will be conducted with you individually.
We ask that you do not bring young children with you to sessions, as their presence in the room can impact on what can be discussed and can reduce your ability to concentrate and benefit fully from the session.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I NEED A REPORT FROM MY PSYCHOLOGIST?
If you require a diagnostic assessment for the purpose of a report it is important that you tell us prior to your first appointment. A diagnostic assessment for the purposes of a report can require additional psychological tests and assessment and will usually take several sessions to complete. Please note that Medicare does not provide a rebate for sessions that are for the purpose of diagnostic assessment or reports. Diagnostic reports incur additional fees that are charged proportionate to the time that the report takes to write.
DO I NEED A REFERRAL?
You do not need a referral to see a psychologist.
Some people are referred to psychologists by their GP under a Mental Health Care Plan, which entitles them to Medicare rebate (of approximately 65% of the full cost) for up to 10 therapy sessions per calendar year.
If you have suffered a work-related psychological injury you may be eligible for therapy funding under a Return to Work Compensation scheme - see your GP to discuss a referral.