From November 2006 the Australian Federal Government made provision for every Australian citizen to access rebates for private psychological consultations.

In order to use the Medicare rebate system you need to be referred by a GP, your medical doctor. This is essential as the GP (not the psychologist) has the responsibility for linking you up with the Medicare system. Your GP will complete a Mental Health Care Plan allowing this to happen. They will either send this completed Mental Health Care Plan to the identified psychologist or you will be given the plan to bring with you on your first initial consultation.

Per calendar year, an individual is allowed maximum of 10 individual psychological consultations. There is also provision for a maximum of 10 group psychological consultations within one calendar year. This is in addition to the individual sessions.

This rebate system also applies to other health care items under Medicare so if you have received a rebate for any other allied health care issue it is important to check with Medicare to see what your eligibility for rebates is at any point in time.

For further information you can visit the Medicare website: www.medicareaustralia.gov.au.