INFORMATION FOR NEW CLIENTS
At DS Psychology Group we aim to make your introduction to our services as easy as possible. You may find the information below useful, written especially for new clients. Please also read our frequently asked questions, call 9872 6255 or complete the form to the right if you would like more information.
If you would like to make an appointment call 9872 6255 or make an appointment online now.
How do I make an appointment?
Complete our online Appointment Form. Our receptionist will call you within 24 hours to discuss your reasons for counselling, presenting issues, clarify your needs and explore your therapist preferences.
Our receptionist will aim to match your needs and preferences with the specific psychologist best suited. She will also answer any questions you have about your counselling appointment.
Alternatively you can email a specific question (use the form to the right) or call 9872 6255.
If you would like to speak to your therapist directly, prior to scheduling an appointment, then please make this request to our receptionist also and she will organise this on your behalf.
Do I need a referral?
It is possible to make an appointment without a referral. Some people use their Private Health Insurance to fund a part of their sessions or choose to fund their sessions privately (no rebate); again a referral is NOT needed here. However if you would like to claim the Medicare rebate you need a referral from a GP or psychiatrist; furthermore if you have a regular GP that you trust and have an ongoing relationship with, it can be helpful to keep he or she informed.
Who is eligible for Medicare rebates?
If you are an Australian citizen/resident and you have a diagnosable mental health condition, for example but not limited to: depression, anxiety, sleep problems, panic, stress, trauma, grief, relationship problems, or anger. If you are unsure and/or are experiencing significant distress or coping problems make an appointment with your GP to discuss your eligibility further.
What is the fee?
We have separate fees for day and after hours appointments.
Please call to discuss this with our receptionist on 9872 6255 who would happy to work out what options would suit you best.
How do I pay for my session?
Payments can be made by cash, credit or eftpos; however we do not take Diners or American Express.
How long is each session?
Each session is 50 minutes; however please allow 1 hour for introductions and payment.
Where are you located? Is there parking?
DS Psychology Group is situated at Suite 6/37 Heatherdale Rd Ringwood 3134. We are the first suite as you enter.
We are also a 2-minute walk from Heatherdale train station (walking away from Whitehorse Road)
There is 2 hr parking all along the street in front of the building.
Do I need to arrive early to fill out forms?
Arriving 5 minutes early will help: the receptionist will greet you (business hours only) and confirm your appointment time. She may also confirm your details on our electronic database and will then provide you with a Client Consent Form. For after-hours appointments please come straight into our waiting room and your psychologist will attend to you within 10 minutes.
What can I expect from my 1st session?
When you first meet your psychologist she or he will need to get to know you. He or she will introduce themselves, explain about confidentiality, the Mental Health Care Plan (if relevant) and answer any questions you might have about the consent form. They will then ask numerous questions to understand your symptoms and concerns and to formulate an understanding about what is happening for you.
For complex situations this can sometimes take more than 1 session. Importantly they will seek to engage you in counselling, help you feel at ease and develop a positive relationship with you. Finally they will ask you about your goals for counselling and discuss the therapy options available to best meet those needs.
Your psychologist will be very interested in your feedback about all aspects of the therapeutic process, and will ask for your feedback routinely, so please talk to your psychologist if you have any questions about your therapy.
How often do I need to come?
It is best to begin sessions on a regular basis eg. weekly to start with while you get to know your psychologist and start working on a plan to address your concerns. Sessions can then move to fortnightly and even monthly as you aim to maintain the changes you have made. However this also needs to work within your financial constraints so discuss and collaborate with your psychologist on the most effective plan to reach your goals.
Are there private health rebates? And can I use these to pay the ‘gap?’
Yes. If you have private health insurance with comprehensive extras then you can claim a proportion of your fee. DS Psychology Group have a HICAPs machine, which means you will be able to do this at the time of payment.
It is usually not possible to top up the Medicare rebate with Private Health Insurance. You will need to decide which rebate you decide to use. Please contact us if you have any questions.
Do you offer after hours appointments?
Yes we have after-hours appointments offered (these are classified as sessions conducted before 9am and after 5pm) on Monday through to Friday and Saturday morning.
Do you offer bulk-billing or concession rates?
The answer is yes we do however this is dependent on individual financial circumstances and whether you fulfill Bulk Billing (BB) and Concession rate criteria. As an organisation there is a limit to how many of these clients we can see at any one time; and these appointments are also only available during the day. Please call our receptionist to discuss your individual situation.
What if I need to cancel my appointment?
At least 2 business days is preferred for changes to all counseling appointments and appointments cancelled on the day will incur the FULL FEE. We do understand there are rare occasions you may need to change or postpone your counseling session. However for short notice cancellations we are rarely able to succeed in offering this appointment to a waiting client, and as a result the clinician’s time is also forfeited.
For Assessment appointments 5 business days notice is required for any appointment changes. This is due to the time and paperwork involved in booking and confirming assessments, and as a result the increased difficulty with filling short notice cancellations.