How much does a psychology session cost?
A standard 50-minute therapy appointment is $260 and the initial assessment (1 hour) is $290. Medicare rebates for up to 10 sessions per calendar year are available for many clients. Fees can be paid by EFTPOS, cash, or credit card (no AMEX) at the end of the appointment.
Can I receive a rebate for psychology sessions?
Rebates for psychological services are available from several sources including
Under the Medicare ‘Better access to mental health‘ scheme you can obtain a rebate for up to 10 therapy sessions in each calendar year. To be eligible to receive the rebate you must visit your GP, Psychiatrist, or Paediatrician and obtain a referral for psychological services as part of your overall treatment plan.
If you have reached your Medicare family ‘safety net’ threshold for the calendar year, the rebate will be almost all of the session cost. Click here to read more about the Medicare safety net.
Private Health Funds
Most private health funds provide rebates for psychological services depending upon your level of cover. Please contact your health fund to find out more.
If you would like more information, or to book an appointment with one of our clinical psychologists, please email or call the clinic on 02 9438 2511.
What can I expect from psychological treatment?
The aim of the initial appointment is for you and your therapist to get to know each other and to develop a thorough understanding of the particular problem area that you would like help with. For that reason the first appointment is usually slightly longer than a standard therapy session (1 hour). A primary aim of the first session is to reach an understanding of things that may be causing or exacerbating the problem and to set clear goals for change. To help with this process your therapist will probably ask more questions than is usual and may make notes as you talk.
The main therapy technique used by our clinic is Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), although other therapy types are used if we feel that these will be more suitable for you and if they are shown by research to be effective for your condition. CBT and other therapies that we use are not just about talking through your problems. Psychological therapy, including CBT is an active process of discussing and understanding why a particular problem may be occurring, and then learning specific skills to address the problem or manage better. The main aim of CBT is to teach clients skills so that they can begin to enact change and maintain that change in the longer term. In other words, the aim is for clients to become their own expert therapists. For that reason, sessions may involve learning and practising particular skills, and you may be asked to practise skills in your daily life for ‘homework’.
How long does psychological treatment take?
The length of therapy depends on many factors (e.g., the nature and complexity of the problem, your expectations, motivation to change, etc.). It is generally accepted that most psychological problems can be address within 6-12 sessions (hence the Medicare rebate covers 10 sessions). However, there is no true standard. Some very simple problems may only require 2-3 sessions, while more complex problems may require longer-term work. Your therapist can often provide an estimation of how long therapy should take after the initial assessment.
What should I expect to feel over the time of psychological therapy?
Some people feel some benefits of therapy after the first session but for the majority it will take around four weeks before you feel some change. The feeling of change (be it good or bad) is usually a good sign that you are seeing things in a new light.