FAQs

Q: how long is a typical appointment?

The standard consult is one hour, of which fifty minutes will be face-to-face with your psychologist. The ten minutes between a day's consecutive consults is used by your psychologist to prepare your file before your fifty-minute session, and to conclude notes and confirm your next appointment afterwards. 

Q: Can I book a longer appointment?

Yes, double session consults (usually 100 minutes, or 1 hour 40 minutes) are often useful in certain circumstances. This includes for your initial consult, or for more in-depth couple therapy with Dave or EMDR processing with Melita, or for EAP sessions. Please discuss your needs and preferences with your psychologist. 

Q: Do I need a referral to make an appointment?

No. You can attend as a 'private patient' and will not need a referral. Simply call to discuss any questions you may have and to organise a time that suits you, or book online yourself - see our Appointments tab. If you wish to claim a Medicare rebate you will need an appropriate referral from a general practitioner (GP), psychiatrist or paediatrician. See below for more details.

Q: How can I make an appointment?

To make an appointment simply call Dave on 0413 022 542 or Melita on 0423 242 379 to discuss any questions you may have and to organise a time that suits you. We offer early morning, daytime and evening appointments and are open seven days a week.  Alternatively, you may book online yourself - see our 'Appointments' tab above.

Q: Can I get a Medicare rebate for psychology services?

Yes. You will need a referral from your doctor, called a 'Mental Health Care Plan'.

Q: How can I get a Medicare referral?

You need an appropriate referral from a GP, psychiatrist or paediatrician. Generally the easiest path is:

1. book an appointment with your GP and ask for a longer consultation.

2. at that appointment, discuss your issue with your GP and ask for a 'Mental Health Care Plan', and ask to be referred to Ripple Psychology.

3. contact either Melita or Dave at Ripple Psychology to book a time, and bring that plan to your first appointment.

Q: How many sessions can I have with a GP Mental Health Care Plan and get the Medicare rebate?

You can have a total of ten in a calendar year but you must go back to your doctor after the sixth session and obtain a continuing referral. Your psychologist will remind you of this before the sixth session.

Q: How is my Medicare rebate paid to me?

If you are registered with Medicare for rebates it will be paid in to the account you nominated. If you are not registered with Medicare you can register your bank account details with with us at Ripple Psychology (please ask your psychologist) or with Medicare directly:

·         going to the myGov website and signing in to access your Medicare online account

·         using the Express Plus Medicare mobile app. You can download it to your mobile device. For information, go to the Australian Government Department of Human Services website and search for ‘Express Plus’.

·         calling Medicare on 132 011 (call charges may apply).

Q: I already have a GP Mental Health Care Plan but I want to see a different psychologist to the one on the plan. Is that possible?

Yes you can, although you will need to call your GP's practice and request the plan be altered to be addressed to 'Ripple Psychology' and then faxed to us on 5448 0663.

Q: Can I get a private health insurance rebate for psychology services?

Most private health funds offer rebates on psychological services. To claim a rebate you will need to be covered by ancillary benefits insurance (extras cover). Some health funds also require a medical referral. Rebates vary based on your level of cover. We recommend that you check with your health insurance fund first to find out if you are covered and how much your rebate will be.

Q: Does Ripple Psychology bulk bill?

No. We offer reduced gap payments for concession card holders (pension, student, unemployment) on a limited basis and within school hours.

Q: What are your standard fees for a session?

The standard cost is $160 per 50-minute session.

Q: How much is the Medicare rebate?

Currently $84.80 - as at June 2017.

Q: Are there any other charges?

Payment by credit or debit card (Mastercard, Visa, American Express) attracts a $1 transaction fee plus a 2% card fee - a total of $4.30 for a full $160 session payment. There are no fees for cash payments.

Q: Can I just pay the difference (the gap)?

No. With Medicare rebates, you pay the full amount ($160 plus any card fees) and then Medicare refunds the rebate ($84.80) into your nominated account.

Q: Can I pay the gap with my health fund card?

No. You can only use one type of rebate for a consultation: Medicare rebate OR health fund rebate.

Q: Can I get the Medicare rebate 'on the spot'?

Yes. You can have it refunded into your savings or cheque account (if you have registered with Medicare) after you have paid the full amount of the consultation to Ripple Psychology. Medicare generally processes this refund overnight and deposits it into the account that you have registered with Medicare.

Q: How many sessions can I have with Medicare?

Up to 10 in a calendar year if your doctor agrees.

Q: Can I use my Health fund care and Medicare rebate in the same calendar year?

Yes, for different sessions. For example you can get a Medicare rebate (if you have a Mental Health Care Plan from your GP) for one session and for another session you can use your private health fund card.

Q: How do I get the health fund rebate?

You don’t need a referral. Check with your health fund to make sure you are covered for psychology.

Q: Can I get the health fund rebate 'on the spot'?

No. Your health fund will process your rebate on receipt of the invoice you have paid for Ripple Psychology services. Your invoice will be emailed to you (usually on the day of your session). Many health funds allow rebate processing online. 

Q: What kind of problems can you help me with?

Please see professional profiles of the psychologist of your choice to view their areas of expertise.

Q: Is what I say to a psychologist confidential?

It is typical to be concerned about your privacy and confidentiality when sharing intimate details about yourself. At Ripple Psychology all psychologists uphold the Psychologists Board of Australia (PBA) endorsed Code of Ethics. What you say to a psychologist is confidential and will not be passed on to anyone else (such as a family member, friend or employer) without your consent, except where: it is subpoenaed by a court; failure to disclose the information would place you or another person at serious and imminent risk; or if disclosure is otherwise required or authorised by law. Where you have been referred to Ripple by your GP, your psychologist will provide a brief report to your GP regarding your progress. If you have concerns about the level of detail in these reports, please discuss with your psychologist.

Q: How do I decide which psychologist to see?

You are likely to feel comfortable with either of our psychologists. Both are experienced and well qualified, and have similar personal approaches. Both are highly skilled, warm, understanding and accepting. Dave sees adults, couples, children, adolescents & families, and Melita sees adolescents & adults. You could take the next available appointment that suits you, or you could view the psychologist profiles on our webpage and base your decision on that. We are happy to assist you in deciding of course.

Q: How long does a session last for?

Most sessions usually run for 50 minutes. We prefer that your initial session is a double session where possible (1hour, 40 minutes) This allows us to complete a thorough assessment of your situation and in most cases, begin to formulate a plan with you. We understand that sometimes this is not possible for some of our clients.

Q: How do I get to Ripple Psychology and where can I park?

We are located upstairs in the Arcadia Walk building, 10 Arcadia Street, Noosa Junction. This is at the top of the white stairs in the pedestrianised part of Arcadia Street in the Junction. Limited street parking is available, as well as free public parking behind the cinema and shopping complex or in the council car park near the old Bowls Club off Lanyana Way; or in the shopping complexes at Noosa Fair (Coles) or IGA at the end of Lanyana Way.

Q:What should I expect from the first session?

In the initial session, your psychologist will typically ask a number of questions to build an understanding of the particular matters that have brought you to therapy. He or she will gather background information, discuss your expectations and establish objectives for the therapy, in collaboration with you.

Q: How many sessions will I need?

The counselling process is different for each person. The number of sessions you will need depends on your unique circumstances. Some people resolve their issues in just a few sessions, whereas others require treatment over a longer term. This matter will be discussed with your psychologist after the first session.

Q: What payment methods do you accept?

We prefer cashless payments (credit or debit card, processed on secure servers through HealthKit). Card payments are subject to a $1 transaction fee plus a merchant fee of 2% (a total of $4.50 for a full $160 session payment). Alternatively, payment by way of cash is accepted, and attracts no further transaction fees.

Q: Do you have a Cancellation Policy?

Yes, due to the high demand for appointments, Ripple Psychology has a Cancellation Policy for short notice cancellations. If you cancel your appointment with less than 24 hours notice you may be charged 50% of the full fee. If you fail to show up for your appointment without notice you will be charged the full fee. Of course Ripple Psychology is understanding of exceptional circumstances.

Q: Is there something wrong with me that I can’t work it out for myself?

No – getting help is the smart thing to do. Early intervention can help you to avoid suffering unnecessarily and prevent more serious problems in the future. You may find asking for help from a psychologist is difficult. Many people feel weak or 'a failure' when they seek help. The reality is that when you have a problem, your mental health cannot be managed by telling yourself to 'pull yourself together', or to 'pick yourself up and move on' or to 'just snap out of it'. Seeking help is an act of courage and strength, and in itself is the first step towards reaching your potential. Ignoring or avoiding your problems can appear an easier option, but is usually, ultimately, unsuccessful. If you still feel you can manage it on your own and don’t believe you need professional help, ask yourself this: How long have you been doing it on your own? Why haven’t things changed? How much have you already lost? If it has been more than a few months, then it is time to get help.

Q: What’s the difference between psychologists, counsellors and psychotherapists?

In this country, there are many different practitioners who claim to treat mental health problems. Many are properly trained, and are fully registered and insured - and many are not. To practise in Australia, psychologists must be registered with the Psychology Board of Australia (PBA) and must:
  • Hold an appropriate qualification (most psychologists have a minimum of six years of tertiary training and supervision)
  • Undertake an approved program of continuing professional development
  • Hold appropriate Professional Indemnity Insurance
  • Demonstrate satisfactory evidence of recent practice
In Australia, counsellors and psychotherapists are not regulated by any specific government body – and they are not required to have a license to practise. Anyone can call themselves a counsellor or psychotherapist, whether or not they have undertaken professional training in treating mental health issues. If you are planning to see a counsellor or psychotherapist, it is wise to enquire about their qualifications, the professional organisations to which they belong, and whether they practise according to a code of professional ethics.

Q: Do you do couples counselling?

Yes. Dave sees couples.

Q: Do you do family therapy?

Dave sees couples, or family members in groups and individually.

Q: Do you see children?

Yes. Dave sees children.

Q: Do you see adolescents?

Yes. Both Melita and Dave enjoy working with adolescents.

Q: Do you see adults wanting to deal with their childhood trauma?

Yes. Melita has a particular interest in this work.

Q: Do you see WorkCover and ComCare clients?

Yes.

Q: Are you clinical psychologists?

No - both Melita and Dave are psychologists with general registration.

Q: Do you do psychological assessments?

Generally no, although discuss your need with your psychologist. You may be best seeing a clinical psychologist who specialises in using assessment instruments.

Q: Is psychology counselling for me?

Psychological treatment is for anyone who wants to live a more fulfilling and contented life. Some people want some advice (we prefer to call it guidance) on dilemmas that crop up for them, other people need help with more pressing concerns.

Q: Why the name "Ripple"?

Our two principal psychologists believe that this name captures the idea of making a small or initial change that 'ripples' into broader and longer-lasting benefits for you, the client.

Q: What does the tagline mean?

"Change - Heal - Flourish" is a positive summary of the primary objectives of psychotherapy: for most it is the aim of enacting positive change in their lives; for many it offers the chance to heal and to repair previous injury to self and soul; and for all people Ripple Psychology offers the opportunity to grow and to flourish, and to access support in reaching their full potential!