How To Use The Mental Health Care Plan | The Indigo Project

How To Use The Mental Health Care Plan

Getting mental help support can be a daunting task. But once you’ve decided that you want to reach out and chat to someone (nice, good call) it can be tricky to know where to start.

Mental Health Treatment Plan – MHTP (previously known as a ‘mental health care plan’ – MHCP)

So, you’ve decided to reach out for support – legendary behaviour.

What now? Get your hands on a MHTP.

Chat to your GP about a Mental Health Treatment Plan. This plan provides a Medicare rebate for up to 10 individual appointments per year with a psychiatrist, psychologist (clinical and registered) or eligible social worker or occupational therapist. It’s part of a government-backed program called the ‘Better Access initiative’.

You’re eligible for a MHTP if you are experiencing issues related to a mental disorder that significantly interferes with either your cognitive, emotional or social abilities. The plan is designed to support you, so please note it doesn’t cover couples counselling or family counselling as a group.

You’ll have a review after 6 sessions. If you still need more support after 10, you can be referred to your local Primary Healthcare Network.

Learn More At the Department of Health

 

WHAT IF I PREFER TELEHEALTH?

Of course we can chat online! Our therapists will support you however you feel comfortable to chat. You’re always welcome to book an appointment, but we do need to let you know the government has a few rules around appointments booked under MHTP plans.

There is provision under the ‘Better Access to Psychiatrists, Psychologists and General Practitioners’ (Better Access) initiative for telehealth. You can chat to one of our therapists online for up to 7 out of the 10 consultations. But there is one small catch: we do need to see you in person just once before your 4th session. We’re all super friendly though, so please don’t be shy.

 

HOW DO I GET A MHTP?

Let’s walk through this Together

Step 1:

Visit your GP, pediatrician or psychiatrist. Talk about your mental health concerns and mention that you’re keen on speaking further with a professional. You’ll likely be asked to complete a questionnaire so your GP can suss the scope of your concerns at hand. This is important info for your future psychologist.

Step 2:

Your GP will write up a referral (p.s. This works the exact same when they refer you anywhere e.g., to a specialist). Your GP might have connections with psychologists and recommend them to you. However, you can always tell them of the name of the psychologist you’d like to see. To see an Indigo therapist  ask your GP to make out your MHCP to The Indigo Project – from here you can pick whoever you’d like from our team!

Step 3:

DONE – you’ve obtained your MHTP. Now you can book in an appointment with your therapist and your preferred practice (like us!) and guess what – we have availability right now for many of our psychologists. Once your MHTP is with us, we’ll show you how to process rebates via the Medicare app to get your cash back.

TThe difference between a GP referral and MHTP

You can think of a GP letter as a cover letter addressed to The Indigo Project (or your specific psychologist). It tells us why you’re seeing us and what type of plan you’re on (Initial, Review or other) along with the number of sessions with a psychologist you’re eligible for.

A referral also has your GP details, including their Provider number and signature. (PS –  Your MHTP is not valid without this).

You can think of your MHTP as your CV. It’s a more structured doc with specific sections for your GP to fill out regarding your current concerns and medical history. It will specify a Medicare item number – this tells your therapist what type of plan it is. This also needs to be signed and dated by your GP.

Breaking down the different referrals – aka what they should include and what they give you

Initial plan:

  • Used when you first visit your GP and works alongside your MHTP
  • Includes: The type of referral, the number of sessions you can access, your GPs provider number, address, phone number, full name and signature

Review plan:

  • Used when you have had 6 sessions with your therapist
  • Includes: GP details (provider number, address, phone number, full name and signature), Medicare item number or the type of plan (e.g., Review), number of sessions and gets addressed to The Indigo Project

When do I need to get a new referral and MHTP?

Once you’ve used up all your sessions you’ll need a new referral (e.g., your initial plan is 6 sessions, followed by a review plan which gives you another 4 sessions). After that, your Primary Healthcare Network can offer you support.

How can I check how many sessions I have left on my MHTP?

Easy: Jump onto MyGov and click through to Medicare. Then head to the ‘History and statements’ tab and click ‘Medicare claims history’. This will show you all your processed claims with your therapist. If you’re having trouble here, you can also contact our team and we’ll assist you with this information, given your MHTP has been in use at The Indigo Project.

If you’re seeing an Indigo psychologist, you’ll have to process your own Medicare rebates

We’ve left the Medicare rebate claims in your capable hands. This way, you’re always in control of receiving your rebates (and in a timely manner).

We’ve made this process easy by using the Express Plus mobile app. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Download the Express Plus Medicare mobile app.
https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/how-to-download-and-set-up-express-plus-medicare-mobile-app?context=37386

Step 2: Check that your bank details are up-to-date for your Medicare rebate to be paid into.
https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/medicare-online-account-help-update-your-bank-account-details#:~:text=Sign%20in%20to%20myGov%20and,from%20the%20My%20details%20menu

Step 3: To make your claim, you will need your invoice (from us) with all relevant details of your session. This includes: cost, payment, provider number, etc. All the info you need will be included in the invoice we email you. You invoice will be sent out to you after you complete & pay for your session.
https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/mental-health-treatment-plan 

if after your first session you don’t think that that practitioner was right for you, we will match you with someone new (and the second session is on us!*)

Ok, can we chat?

Absolutely. Click here to check out our therapists and book your first session with us online. Don’t know who to choose or want to ask us a few questions? No worries – just email hello@theindigoproject.com.au or give us a call on +61 2 9212 5469 and we can find a therapist that will be right for you.

What should I say when I’m booking in?

The Medicare rebate is only applicable for certain, allied mental health services. When making a booking with your therapist (and in this case, a psychologist), be sure to mention you have a mental health care plan and you’d like your rebate to go towards your session. As psychologists generally charge different hourly rates, it’s wise to ask how much the session will be after the rebate, so you know how much you’ll be paying. Handy to note that all our psychologists here at Indigo are registered and eligible for the Medicare rebate.

No MHTP? No worries.

The Indigo Project is for anyone curious about their mental health, who’d enjoy engaging in preventative work or have a general check-in a.k.a not faced with problems necessarily at mental health disorder level. We have a diverse and wonderful team of psychotherapists, counsellors, coaches and psychologists that can help you, with or without a MHTP.
We highly encourage you to consider therapy as an investment into your general well-being – your future you will thank-you for it.

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