colorful shoes

Frequently Asked Questions

Feeling anxious about starting therapy?

What to expect at your first appointment

Whether or not you have engaged in counseling or therapy in the past it is normal and natural to feel nervous before your first appointment with a psychologist. Listed below are some points that outline what you can expect from your first appointment:

  • Each session will run for 50 minutes.
  • Therapy is completely confidential, with certain exceptions that will be explained to you before therapy begins.
  • The first session is an opportunity for you to get to know your psychologist, discuss the reasons you are seeking treatment, and for the therapist-client relationship to start forming. We will ask questions about your current symptoms, distress, relationships, family and defining, significant ortraumatic experiences. This is so we can assess and explore the things that might be contributing to how you are currently coping and decide the best approach to treatment.
  • The pace of the therapy is directed by the client and this is really important to us.
  • The assessment phase will typically take two to four sessions depending on your specific circumstances and history.
  • At the end of each session you will discuss and decide when you will next meet and whether or not to book a regular recurring appointment in.

If you would like to begin this process, please contact us for an appointment.

What will it cost to see a mental health professional and how many sessions?

Session fees vary depending on length of session and the qualifications of your therapist. It is best to call the practice to discuss the actual fees that will apply to you.

You will be asked to pay on the day of consultation. You may be eligible for a Medicare rebate, depending on how you were referred. Please note, we are not a bulk billing practice.

The length of treatment can vary and will be unique to you. Your psychologist will discuss your treatment plan and estimated time with you at your initial session.

How do I get a referral under a Mental Health Care Plan(MHCP) from my GP?

A MHCP is only necessary if you wish to claim the Medicare rebate, you are ableto see a clinician or therapist without a referral or MHCP if you are willing to pay the full cost. Should you wish to obtain a MHCP, you will need to:

  • Book an appointment with a GP. You will need to ask for an extended consultation or tell the receptionist that you specifically require a MHCP.
  • Discuss your concerns with your doctor. They may ask you to complete a brief questionnaire.
  • Be sure to get your GP to refer you to The Soulutions Centre.
  • You must remember to bring your referral along to your first appointment with the psychologist in order to claim the rebate.

Please note – Psychiatrists can also refer directly to a Psychologist by writing a letter (without preparing a MHCP).

If you already have a MHCP and referral and you are ready to book an appointment now, or would like further advice about the MHCP process, please contact us.

Do I need a referral to see a psychologist?

Not necessarily. You can arrange to be seen without a referral. This is called a self-referral.

We accept referrals from all sources, although Medicare rebates are only available up on referral from your GP with a mental health care plan. It is possible to attend your first session under a fee-per-service basis and then arrange the GP referral.

Please see your GP to discuss a referral and whether or not you are eligible for a mental health care plan.

What if the therapy or the therapist is not the right fit for me?

Client-therapist fit is one of the most important factors in the therapy because the the rapeutic work needs to occur in the context of a trusting relationship. Research as shown that the quality of the client-therapist fit is one of the primary predictors of client progress in therapy. In short, for the therapy to be effective, there must be trust and positive regard in the client-therapist relationship.

The psychologist should address this in the first few sessions by open up the conversation and encouraging the client to think about how they feel the relationship is going, the potential for the relationship and the fit. The psychologist should encourage the client to be open about sharing any concerns and feedback about what they do, and do not, like or want. If you as a client, at any point feel you would like to stop the work and find a new therapist you should feel safe to say so and the psychologist should offer and resources they have to assist you in this process.

What’s the cancellation policy?

If an appointment is cancelled at late notice, it is unlikely this gap will be filled. Late cancellations result in a loss of income for our psychologists, and also mean that other clients have lost an appointment opportunity.

The Solutions Center has a strict cancellation policy. If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment, you must provide us with at least two business days’ notice to avoid a fee of 50% of the full session fee, which is payable at your next session. No Medicare rebate is available for cancelled sessions.

free mindfulness exercises Call Now Button