Doubling of Better Access Sessions

Download a copy of the MBS Additional 10 Mental Health Fact Sheet Here.

Download the AAPi Summary Fact Sheet Here.

The most significant announcement for mental health in the Federal Budget this year has been the doubling of the allowable Better Access sessions from 10 to 20. 

This is a welcome announcement and one so many of us have been working towards for some time. This is an acknowledgement of the incredible work you are doing and the immense value of psychologists and mental health professionals to the community. The extra 10 sessions will be available from Friday 9 October 2020.

While we were verbally instructed (at the health stakeholder briefing on last Tuesday night) by Minister Hunt that clients would be able to skip the six session review and only present to their GP for re-referral at session 10 to access another 10 sessions under Better Access Covid items, at present the legislation (and MBS online) does not seem to reflect this change.

We are working with the Department of Health, Services Australia and Medicare to clarify this ASAP. We will update you with more information as soon as it is received. 

Until we have received further advice , please continue to ensure that clients see their GP at session 6, a re referral for a further 4 sessions is provided if required, for the first 10 Better Access Sessions, and if clinically appropriate, clients see their GP after session 10 for a re-referral of the extra 10 sessions for a maximum total of 20 sessions per calendar year.

You can read the full health budget information here.

I want to thank you, our members. You are the ones working so hard with dedication and compassion. It is our privilege to represent you to government and advocate for results such as those announced tonight. We will continue to work hard to represent all psychologists equally and to increase access to the vital services that you all provide. Thank you for your membership and support.

Take Care,

Tegan Carrison
Executive Director, AAPi