FAQ

What is the Psychology process?


What technology do I need for Telehealth?

For a Video Telehealth Consultation:

  • a desktop computer or laptop
  • a stable internet connection
  • the device needs a functioning webcam, speakers, and microphone
  • for added privacy you may wish to utilise headphones for the session
  • alternatively, a tablet device resting on a stand is acceptable

Video Telehealth Consultations occur within a web browser, you don't need to download any special software.

Google Chrome is the preferred browser because it enables features like sharing screens, document cameras and digital whiteboards during the session.

Google Chrome can be downloaded for free from the official website here.

Firefox (50+), Microsoft Edge and Safari (12+) are also supported, however these browsers may not offer additional features available through Google Chrome.

Mobile phones are not recommended for video consultations. While it is possible to use a mobile phone for a video session the size of the screen is too small and holding the device steady for 50 minutes can be uncomfortable.

If you would like to test your equipment before making a booking you can use the free automated test call service. Making a test call is a useful way of checking your camera, microphone and speakers are working before connecting to a Video Call. The test call is entirely automated and available any time of the day or night, there is no person at the other end of the call.

For a Telephone Telehealth Consultation:

  • a mobile (with at least 50 minutes battery charge), fixed line or satellite phone connection with reliable service.

Other Frequently Asked Questions

Telehealth sessions occur in the web browser so you don't need any special software. Google Chrome is the preferred browser as it gives full access to features such as whiteboard sketching, screen sharing, and document cameras. These features are useful when sharing information and resources with you. Other browsers such as Firefox, Microsoft Edge and Safari are all compatible but may not offer the full feature set. If you are interested in using Google Chrome for your telehealth session you can get it for free at the official download page.

Use the Test Call link. This Precall test can be done at any time of the day or night and will test your camera, microphone, speakers and internet. The test is entirely automated and there is no person at the end of the call.

You will be sent a link to the session by email, click on the link to join the session 5 minutes before the appointment. This gives you some time to check that your webcam, microphone and speakers are all working.

We'll spend a few minutes trying to problem solve the connection issue. If we can't fix the connection, I'll call you on your phone number to conduct the session.

Google Chrome (49+), Firefox (50+), Microsoft Edge and Safari (12+) are all compatible with the telehealth platform.

A 50 minute telehealth session on the Coviu telehealth platform uses between 246MB and 750MB. These figures are a guide only since the telehealth platform automatically adjusts the amount of data used during a call to match the quality of the internet connection available.

That's totally okay, make yourself comfortable. So long as you have enough privacy to talk openly and there are no distractions in the background, feel free to sit in the comfy spot on the lounge with your favourite cushion, blanket and a cup of tea or coffee.

Sure, headphones are fine to use.

So long as you have a reliable internet connection, a device with a webcam, microphone and speakers/headphones and a safe, private and distraction free space, you can access telehealth from anywhere in Australia. This includes when you are on holiday in a hotel room, camping, on a boat, at work or at a friends place. You need to be certain of the quality of the internet connection, level of privacy and telephone coverage before you plan a session at another location.

Certainly, I understand the problems and issues around rural internet connectivity and have experience working with people living in rural Australia. If the latency becomes too much of a problem during a session we'll keep the video link open and I'll try calling your phone for better quality audio.

Yes, when using an iPad it's best if you place it on a stand instead of holding it.

You can change the default browser to Chrome by following these instructions or, change the 'https://' part of the link to 'googlechromes://'. An internet search may help you find other options that suit you and your device.

Yes, the telehealth platform is browser-based and works with Linux - please use a Google Chrome browser, or Firefox. The open source Chromium browser is not listed as being supported by the Coviu telehealth platform.

A Mental Health Treatment Plan is your Doctor's plan for treating your mental health. It needs to be completed along with a referral and submitted to your Psychologist before your first session in order for you to be eligible to receive Medicare Rebates.

There is no difference - A Mental Health Treatment Plan was formerly called a Mental Health Care Plan. The terminology is still often used interchangeably.

Make an appointment with your Doctor (either GP or Psychiatrist). If seeing your GP request a long appointment in order to discuss your circumstances. Ask your doctor for a Referral to see a Psychologist and a Mental Health Treatment Plan.

Anyone can see a Psychologist without seeing a doctor or developing a Mental Health Treatment Plan. However, without a Mental Health Treatment plan you would not receive any rebates from Medicare and would need to pay the full session fee.

Some people prefer not to have a Mental Health Treatment Plan (MHTP) as they do not wish to have this listed on their health records as a pre-existing condition. However, without a MHTP you need to pay full fees and would not be eligible to receive a Medicare Rebate.

Medicare determines if a person is eligible for a rebate. The Psychologist doesn't make this decision. The Psychologist will submit a rebate request to Medicare, on your behalf, at the end of the session if you:
  • have submitted a referral letter and Mental Health Treatment Plan (MHTP) to the psychologist before your first session;
  • booked a 'Medicare Rebate' appointment through my website;
  • have not previously used up all of your available psychology sessions on your MHTP.
If Medicare determines you are eligible for a rebate they will process the funds into your bank account, usually within 24 hours.

Your Doctor can send a referral and Mental Health Treatment Plan to me either through ReferralNet to Andrea Schwede, or by fax +61745721908.

Coviu. Coviu was developed in Australia by the CSIRO specifically for telehealth. It is HIPAA compliant and has end-to-end encryption.

No. If you don't feel comfortable speaking to someone about your situation and would prefer a text based service, organisations such as lifeline offer a crisis SMS service. If you need support or assistance, the most important thing is that you get help, using whatever method you feel comfortable with.

CBT focuses on identifying, challenging, and changing
  • a person's problematic thoughts (cognitive distortions)
  • what a person does and/or doesn’t do as a result of these thoughts (associated behaviours)
  • to improve how the person feels (emotion regulation)
CBT also teaches skills to develop personal coping strategies that can be applied to many challenging situations throughout life. These skills & strategies help solve current problems - even if these problems began long ago.

This depends on your individual circumstances, which can fluctuate over time. For most people weekly or fortnighly sessions are sufficient. As a guide, allow for between 6 - 12 sessions unless your circumstances are quite complex or severe.

No, this service has been developed for telehealth exclusively. All consultations occur online using video conferencing, or by telephone.

No, this is a treatment focused therapeutic service.

No, this is a treatment focused therapeutic service.

No, this service is not an NDIS provider.

No, this service does not offer group or couples therapy.

Yes, I have trained in a number of therapeutic modalities and will draw upon these if they are applicable to your presenting concerns. However, I predominately work from a CBT framework.

I provide therapeutic services to adults aged 18 years and over.

Yes, I am a Psychology Board of Australia Approved Supervisor and I provide online Clinical Psychology supervision to Psychology Registrars, Clinical Psychologists and Generalist Psychologists. I do not offer supervision to Provisional Psychologists.

Last updated: Jul 1, 2022