This week we have continued our media blitz, focusing on the need to increase the Medicare rebate for the clients of all psychologists to $150.
On Sunday 28 August, AAPi's concerns over low psychologist rebates were published in an article in Adelaide's Sunday Mail, the image above.
Executive Director Tegan Carrison said the small increase in rebates in recent years "don't scratch the surface" of costs faced by psychologists and bulk-billing is not an option for most. It is imperative that the rebate is raised to $150 for the clients of ALL psychologists.
"Psychologists are facing the same issues as GPs. If psychologists, many of whom own their own small businesses, are to keep the doors open, they need to pass on the difference between the actual cost of service and the rebate amount to the consumer."
On Monday, ABC Radio Canberra (along with Triple J) ran a story on the shortage of psychologists in the capital, saying that more than a third of Canberra-based psychologists can't accept new clients.
This news item was followed up by an interview on the same topic with Director Sahra O'Doherty on ABC Radio Canberra Breakfast, who raised a number of solutions to the problem, including the use of provisional psychologists, increasing university placements, and raising the client rebate.
Tuesday, a story on ABC News online again outlined the shortage of psychologists and psychiatrists, detailing the story of a mother who has been trying for years to get the help they need.
In this story, we are offering solutions to the problem, including calls for provisional psychologists to be allowed to provide services under Medicare and for the rebate to be raised to $150.
AAPi's calls to allow provisional psychologists to provide services under Medicare were also included in this ABC article on social workers.
For the month of August, AAPi appeared in 75 media stories and reached an audience of almost 11 million people.
AAPi will continue to lobby for higher rebates for the clients of all psychologists and improved access to psychological care.