COVID-19 CLIENT UPDATE #5 21.04.2020
Dear WPS Community,
** WPS FEE UPDATE - For clients with a Mental Health Care Plan that claim a rebate from Medicare ** The government has been making regular changes to the way psychologists can charge clients who claim a rebate from Medicare. We are updating you as soon as these payment rules change.
• On Monday 6th April 2020, Medicare advised psychologist’s “can apply their usual billing practices to the Telehealth items”. That is, psychologists were no longer required to bulk bill all telehealth sessions. However, some select clients were required to be bulk billed. (see below)
• On Friday 17th April 2020, Medicare advised that from Mon 20th April, there are "no requirements" for psychologists to bulk bill.
We will honour our previous commitment to bulk bill clients who meet criteria below until Friday 24th April. See below for details.
Normal session fees have applied since Mon 13th April 2020 -see update (https://www.wpsychology.com/post/covid-19-client-update-4), for 50 minute Psychology sessions. You will still receive your usual Medicare rebate.
2. The below exceptions apply for appointments this week up to Friday 24th April and will be bulk billed:
• Under age 16
• Clients who are more vulnerable to COVID-19 (e.g. over age 70, chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, immune suppression, respiratory conditions, ATSI community, pregnant women, diagnosed with COVID 19 in isolation)
• Clients who hold a pension or health care concession card
3. If you have changed financial circumstances and would be unable to attend counselling, please advise reception to discuss a financial hardship option we have available. We are here to help you and want to continue to offer our usual level of service for all our clients.
WPS Fees Policy WPS is aiming to continue to provide counselling services uninterrupted whilst the COVID-19 crisis interventions are in place. Despite the significant physical and financial constraints, we are doing our best to remain viable and appreciate all our community’s efforts to respect our service provision in relation to fees. Our fees are well below the recommended rates for psychologist’s by the Australian Psychological Society at $254. We are mindful that, past the pandemic and into the future, we aim to continue to provide access to a wide breadth of skilled psychologists and specialist programs to service our community.
Access to reception/admin services
Our reception is currently closed for face-to-face service.
You are welcome to contact us via reply to an SMS or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and request a call back if unable to get through on our phone: 9746 8088. Some of our staff are required to work from home, therefore call backs may be coming from a private number.
Please keep in mind many counselling sessions are now via phone, taking up our lines, which may require you to leave a message.
Thank you for your understanding and patience. We are working diligently to respond to you as quickly and effectively as possible in these changed circumstances.
WPS ADMIN TEAM