Accessing Private Services via Medicare
Community members can access Psychologists, Clinical Psychologists and Mental Health Social Workers and receive a significant rebate under the BAMHO Initiative.
Better Access to Mental Health Care Initiative
The Better Access to Mental Health Care Initiative was first introduced on 1st November 2006 by the Australian Government with the aim of improving outcomes for people with a clinically-‐diagnosed mental disorder. Under this scheme, all Psychologists, Clinical Psychologists and Mental Health Social Workers who are endorsed by Medicare Australia can provide treatment services for mental health problems.
Medicare rebates provided under this scheme are available to clients with an assessed mental disorder. This includes mental health conditions such as:
psychotic disorders bipolar depression anxiety, panic and phobic disorders obsessive compulsive disorder adjustment disorders sexual disorders conduct disorders bereavement disorders post-traumatic stress disorder eating disorders drug and/or alcohol use disorders sleep problems attention deficit disorder.
How Many Sessions Can I Have?
Medicare rebates are available for up to 10 individual services and up to 10 group therapy services per calendar year.
Do I Need A Referral?
YES. If you are referred by your GP then you need a special type of referral called a GP Mental Health Treatment Plan (MHTP). Alternatively, a referral from your Psychiatrist or Paediatrician is also acceptable.
Your GP, Psychiatrist or Paediatrician can refer you for up to six individual or six group allied mental health services. This may comprise either psychological assessment or therapy by a Clinical Psychologist or focussed psychological strategies by an allied mental health professional.
Once you have used all of your sessions allowed under your referral, you will need to have a review with your GP, Psychiatrist or Paediatrician to determine whether you are eligible for further sessions.
How Much is the Rebate?
The Medicare rebate for services provided through this scheme varies depending on the duration of the session, the Practitioner that you see and where the session is conducted (i.e., at the Practitioner’s rooms or a different location).