Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make an appointment to see you?

I currently work in private practice at Redlands Psychologists in Cleveland 3 days a week (Mon-Wed).  Our lovely reception staff can talk you through the process of booking an appointment.  Note: In order to be able to claim a Medicare rebate for sessions, you will need to see your GP to get a referral under a Mental Health Care Plan (MHCP) or ATAPS referral BEFORE your appointment.

Are you a registered ATAPS provider?

Yes, indeed I am.

Do you offer Skype appointments?

While Skype appointments are not a regular part of my work, we may be able to accommodate Skype sessions as needed. Please be aware Skype appointments are not eligible for Medicare or private health fund rebates, and as such full fees are required for these appointments.  All appointments including Skype appointments can be booked through Redlands Psychologists.

It says you are a “Clinical Psychologist Registrar” – Are you fully qualified or still a student?

I completed my Masters of Clinical Psychology and have been a fully registered psychologist since 2010.  I am currently undertaking the clinical registrar program which is a period of advanced supervised practice in one of the nine approved areas of practice. The program enables development of the core competencies relevant to the area of practice to the level of depth and expertise expected of an endorsed practitioner. Upon completion of the registrar program, I will gain clinical endorsement and be able to use the title “Clinical Psychologist”.

Can I get a Medicare Rebate if I see you?

Yes, I am Medicare registered (Medicare Provider No: 4449372L).  In order to be able to claim a Medicare rebate, you need to have a Mental Health Care Plan BEFORE your appointment.  See your GP to discuss the suitability of a MHCP for you in your unique circumstances.

Do you offer breastfeeding counselling?

I am a qualified breastfeeding counsellor with the Australian Breastfeeding Association and active member of the organisation. This undoubtedly influences my knowledge base and perspective, but I do not provide specific lactation support within session as a psychologist. For lactation support, I would highly recommend seeking out an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant).  One easy way to find a lactation consultant in Australia is via the LCANZ website: http://www.lcanz.org/find-a-lactation-consultant

If you are in Australia, you can also call the Australian Breastfeeding Association Breastfeeding Helpline, where trained volunteer counsellors can give you reassurance, information and advice about breastfeeding and overcoming common hurdles to breastfeeding:

Phone: 1800 MUM 2 MUM (1800 686 268)

Hours: 24 hours, 7 days

What is the difference between a psychologist, a psychiatrist and a counsellor?

There are many professionals in the community who are passionate about assisting people to improve their mental health and well-being.

Psychologists and psychiatrists both work in the area of mental health, and often work together. However, there are some significant differences between the two professions in the following areas:

Psychiatrist:

  • A psychiatrist is a doctor who has completed a medical degree prior to specialising in mental health.
  • A psychiatrist can prescribe medication; a psychologist cannot.

Psychologist:

  • In order to be eligible for registration as a psychologist in Australia you must complete a minimum of 6 years of training in human behaviour and mental health. Psychologists have specialist training in non-medical interventions but will work closely with general practitioners or psychiatrists.
  • Psychologists provide evidenced-based talk therapy and behavioural interventions.
  • Psychologists help people with emotional and psychological difficulties as well as helping people who don’t have these difficulties but wish to enhance their psychological well-being and functioning.

Counsellors:

  • Currently in Australia, counsellors are not regulated. Training can range from a Masters degree to a Bachelor’s degree or even a 3 day course.
  • Because of this, the level of skill and professional training can vary widely between counsellors, and their approaches are not bound by the same regulatory bodies and codes of conduct that apply to psychologists. That is not to say that there aren’t great counsellors out there – there are! – but there greater variation in the type of qualification and type of work counsellors do.
  • Counsellors tend to provide non-directive reflective talk-based interventions to help patients to make their own decisions regarding a course of action. However, therapeutic modality can vary greatly between counsellors.

Differences aside, these professions all share a common goal: helping people feel better.  It may be helpful for you to speak with your GP to help you determine who is best placed to assist you.

You are a breastfeeding advocate – do you see mothers who aren’t breastfeeding?

Absolutely! I support all mothers!  Every breastfeeding dyad (ie mother + baby) is unique. For a whole range of reasons, weaning may be the best, simplest, and most positive outcome for a mother. True breastfeeding support is about supporting mothers through their entire breastfeeding journey, including its end.  Whether that’s at 2 weeks or 2 years. And that’s okay!  Sometimes mothers who have weaned still need a space to process their feelings about their breastfeeding experience.  But I also know that breastfeeding means different things to different women, so for some women it’s not something we really talk about much, or at all.  In terms of therapy, it’s only important to me if it is important to you.

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Amanda Donnet

Psychologist

Clinical Registrar

BPsych, BSci(Maths), BSci(Psych)HonsI, MClinPsych, MAPS

Medicare Provider No: 4449372L

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