About Remote Psych and telehealth

Many people are well suited to the delivery of psychology sessions via telehealth (video conferencing). If we look at some of the barriers to accessing help we see why.

Recognised barriers to accessing help for people in rural / regional / remote areas

  • Not wanting people to know
    Living in smaller close-knit communities can make you hesitant to seek support. There can be a sense of being judged, that people will talk, label you. There is a reluctance to turn up for therapy fearing that people will find out.
  • Not knowing how or who to ask for help
    There’s a lack of understanding and education about mental health and indicators of when you should seek help and what will help (though this is improving rapidly through internet use).
  • Travel
    Difficulties and cost of getting to therapy sessions, then having to do it repeatedly.
  • Making time for therapy
    Perhaps you work full-time or attend school, do shift work or care for family.
    Seeking help can feel too hard, overwhelming, draining when you have no energy and your mood is low.
    Finding time weekdays 9-5 and allowing time for travel as well can be almost impossible.
  • Cost of therapy
    Many people don’t realise Medicare rebate up to 10 psychology sessions per year making therapy affordable. Also, many psychologists bulk bill if you have a healthcare card.
  • Long waiting lists to see someone face to face
    Due to the lack of clinicians who can physically get to outer lying regions there are realistically often long delays in receiving treatment.

How telehealth psychology sessions negate some of these barriers

Telehealth sessions with your Remote Psych psychologist have the same components of a face to face session with the convenience of you being able to stay home (or finding a private space to talk uninterrupted). Confidentiality and trust are recognised as major issues and are openly discussed.

Your GP (or any GP) is often the first person to talk with. They can assess your mental health and write a Mental Health Care Plan. This plan then allows you to access an initial six rebated sessions with a psychologist. At Remote Psych that means that you pay out of pocket $35.20 for the session (unless bulk-billed or third party payment eg. TAC).

Making therapy accessible also means providing flexibility in session times. Some of our clinicians schedule appointments in the evenings and Saturdays to accommodate when you’re available.

Lastly, we ensure that an intake / contact appointment occurs within a day of receiving your referral from a GP (or you making direct contact) and it is usual to then start sessions with your psychologist within a week. If support is needed in the interim this will be provided by a Remote Psych clinician.

Our frequently asked questions may answer any additional questions. Don’t hesitate to phone or email if you have a query.

Kim DouglasBNurs, GDipPsych, MPsch (Couns), MAPS

Kim has a Masters degree in Counselling Psychology and is Director of Remote Psych.

She has experience with youth and adults in the public and private sectors. Of particular impact has been three years spent at Headspace and four years volunteering with Lifeline as a telephone counsellor, supervisor and trainer. Additionally, she has a background in nursing and has lived and worked in rural and regional areas of Australia. Her focus is on providing psychology services to youth and adult clients in rural, regional and remote locations.

Kim’s clinical interests include trauma, youth issues, depression, anxiety, phobias, addictions, interpersonal difficulties and personality disorders. Her therapeutic approaches are informed by Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Interpersonal Therapy (IPT), Mindfulness and Motivational Interviewing.

She provides client-focused mental health therapies with a holistic approach to mental and physical well-being. Therapy is viewed as a collaborative process. Providing access to therapy regardless of location or situation is something she is passionate about.