Forms, Privacy & Other Information
Working With A Psychologist
If you are an NDIS participant, the amount of funding you have been allocated under the Capacity Building Supports group category (Improved Daily Living Skills) will have a bearing on the number of sessions that are available to you under that funding.
If you have been referred under Medicare, you are usually entitled to an initial six sessions that attract a Medicare rebate. This can be extended for another four sessions (if required) in any calendar year, but you will need to visit your referring doctor for a new referral in order to access the extra sessions. These 10 sessions are subsidised by the Federal Government. In these circumstances, you are able to access rebates for 10 individual sessions AND 10 group sessions. Currently, there is an exception to this for those with an eating disorder who are able to claim Medicare rebates for up to 40 sessions in a calendar year.
Psychologists work with a variety of issues with evidenced-based treatments. During your first appointment, a thorough history will be taken, and then information will be provided to you about recommended treatments for your situation.
Group sessions generally run for an hour. Individual sessions initially run for approximately 50 minutes, but may be gradually reduced to 30 minutes depending on need. For example, it may be more beneficial for some individuals (such as children) to have shorter sessions. At the end of each session, you will often be given tasks to do before the next session. It is important to attempt these tasks to the best of your ability because research has shown that completing such tasks can improve an individual’s recovery. Some people require many sessions to gain meaningful benefit from therapy, while others may only require a few sessions to achieve their goals. The frequency of sessions is flexible, depending on individual needs.
Your privacy is important. No information about you will be given out to anyone unless you give permission for this to happen. However, there are some exceptions:
It is understood that clients are consenting to the collection of certain personal information by The Snowflake Clinic when they provide details during sessions. Client files are maintained in a secure environment. Generally speaking, clients over 16 years of age have a right to view information contained within their files. However, there are certain provisions built into the Privacy Act 1988 which may prevent this from happening in every situation. Persons under 16 years of age may also view their file, or parts thereof, after consideration and assessment of their maturity to be exposed to contained information.
Please provide at least 48 hours notice of any cancellation. This will allow us the opportunity to offer that appointment to someone else because there may be a waiting list to access these psychological services. If you fail to give enough notice of a cancellation or fail to attend without giving any notice, you may be placed at the end of the waiting list so that services can be offered to others. Clients who fail to attend an appointment without giving any or adequate notice may be charged for that session (but we understand that sometimes circumstances do not allow this).
It can be difficult to speak to your psychologist during the day on the phone without a scheduled appointment due to the concentrated amount of time often spent with our clients. The best way to contact us is by e-mail and we will respond as soon as possible. Keep in mind that we do not provide an emergency or “on call” service. For mental health emergencies, please phone 000, or present at the emergency department of your nearest hospital.
Remember that the more effort you put into participating during your sessions, and the greater your willingness to complete tasks in between sessions, the more likely you are to find the sessions beneficial. We look forward to the opportunity of being able to assist you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask.
1800 551 800 (24 hour)
1300 789 978 (24 hour)
1300 130 052
1300 224 636
The Black Dog Institute:
Head to Health:
Mental Health Australia:
Photographs by Carolyn Griffey © 2019 https://www.facebook.com/PhotoGriffey-406642216193332/