This section provides information about:
What is a psychologist?
A psychologist is a university-trained health professional who is an expert in human behaviour. They understand how the mind works and how we think, react and behave as we navigate life’s ups and downs. Some psychologists choose to complete further training to become endorsed in specific areas of psychology, such as clinical psychology. Practising psychologists must be registered with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA). You can check this at the AHPRA website. Psychologists are different from psychiatrists and cannot prescribe medication.
When would I need to see a psychologist?
A psychologist can be helpful if you are experiencing depression, anxiety or stress. A psychologist can also help you cope with emotions such as grief and loss, and adjusting to life changes such as unemployment, relationship breakdowns or living with a disability.
How much does seeing a psychologist cost?
If you have an NDIS plan you can discuss your needs for psychology due to your condition in your planning meeting. The National Disability Insurance Agency may fund a psychologist in your NDIS plan.
Medicare covers some or all of the costs of seeing a psychologist if your doctor refers you as part of a mental health plan. Talk to your GP about a mental health plan and whether seeing a psychologist is something that could be included in a plan.
If you have private health insurance, some of the costs might be covered. Check with your private health insurance provider about what is covered.
You can find out more about costs, including Medicare rebates, on the APS website or get more information here about low cost or free mental health services.
Where to find a psychologist
You can find a psychologist by using the APS search engine, or a clinical psychologist by using the Australian Clinical Psychology Association’s search directory. Your GP may also be able to suggest a psychologist that may suit you and your needs.
Details for Australian Indigenous psychologists are provided on The Australian Indigenous Psychologists Association website. See the our members tab.
You can also search for mental health services using the HealthDirect service finder, or find out about services at the Head to Health website.