The face of Health Services are certainly changing quickly in response to the outbreak of the Coronavirus.


Here at Gnadenfrei Counselling and Psychology our main focus will always be the health and well-being of our clients, and staff, and as such, during this time of self isolation and physical distancing, we have started using telehealth based services for our counselling sessions.   


Our clinic will remain open for face to face services for as long as we are able, and once this health crisis is over we look forward to returning back to seeing our clients within our clinics full time.

For more information on these temporary measures, please read the following carefully and feel free to contact our office if you have any questions:


Initial Response from Coral Palmer

Zoom Frequently Asked Questions 

How will Telehealth effect my MHCP

Useful websites, ideas and apps

Private Health Funds supporting Telehealth

Zoom adds new Security Measures

Initial Response from Coral Palmer

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At Gnadenfrei Counselling and Psychology, the well-being of our clients and staff has always been our top priority, and we would like to assure our clients and visitors that we will continue with our high standard of hygiene, as well as incorporate extra precautions during this COVID-19 outbreak.

Hand sanitiser is available for use at Reception as well as in each of our offices. Our bathrooms are supplied with antibacterial soap, warm water and paper towel, and you can be assured that our staff will practice proper hand washing after each consult. Together with these measures, all desks, door handles, door frames, computers and phones are wiped down each day.


We do ask that everyone sanitises their hands on entering the clinic.


If you have any of these symptoms (Fever, Sore Throat, Cough or Shortness of Breath), and
 

You have travelled overseas in the last 14 days before getting sick, or
 

Had close contact with someone diagnosed or suspected of having Coronavirus in the last 14 days before getting sick, 


please keep yourself and others safe and healthy by refraining from attending appointments until cleared by a medical specialist. If you need to reschedule an appointment, please contact our office on (07) 3480 5583.
 

Thank you for playing your part in keeping our community healthy and well.
 

Coral Palmer
Psychologist – Director

Zoom - Frequently Asked Questions

Research indicates that telehealth delivery is comparable to face to face interventions. What this means is that the effectiveness of your treatment can be maintained, even if it isn’t taking place in our clinic.

All Telehealth services offered by Gnadenfrei Counselling and Psychology adhere to the Australian Psychological Society’s Code of Ethics regarding confidentiality, and will be available either over the phone or using online video conferencing hosted through Zoom.

What is Zoom?
 

Zoom is a video-conferencing program which you can download for free onto your computer or as an app on your phone, which allows you to host or attend meetings with other people.  We chose Zoom for our therapy consultations because it has high security and privacy standards, and end-to-end (user-to-user) encryption, which means it is harder to hack. 

How do I set up a Zoom account?
 

  • Head to the website: https://zoom.us/ 
  • On the top-right of the page, click on “Sign Up, It’s Free!” and enter your details.
  • Verify your profile when you receive a confirmation email
  • We do recommend setting up your Zoom account well in advance and having a go at testing out your camera and microphone to make sure it all works. 


How will I access my therapy session via Zoom?
 

  • Your practitioner will set up a “meeting” for your session in Zoom. This meeting will generally be password protected.
  • You will receive a Zoom web-link and password either via SMS or email prior to your appointment. 
  • At the time of your appointment, click on the link, and this will launch the Zoom program or app. When you’re in, enter the password.
  • Your practitioner will join you there! 


What will a therapy session via Zoom be like?
 

We run our telehealth therapy sessions in the same way we run our in-person therapy sessions, so if you’re familiar with your therapist, you’ll find it pretty easy to switch to Zoom with them. If you’re new, we will spend much of the first session getting to know you, we will ask you about what has brought you to therapy, and we encourage you to ask questions too.
 

We ask that you do the normal things you would do in preparation for a therapy session:
 

  • Make sure you’ve gone to the bathroom beforehand!
  • Have a glass of water or a cup of tea close by
  • Please ensure that you are in a private location, where your sessions are not overheard by others. You may need to adjust the volume on your device to ensure your privacy.
  • Try to sit in a well lit area.
  • Try to minimise background noise – turn off televisions, music or other sounds, and close the door to the room that you are in.
  • We ask that during sessions, if possible, you place your device on a steady surface and remain in one position rather than holding your device in your hand or walking around.
  • Any worksheets, diagrams or relevant notes that we create together during sessions will be scanned and emailed to you following the session, so that you can refer to these.
  • We will of course try to make sure you’re feeling comfortable and will check to make sure the session is working for you.


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How will Telehealth effect my Mental Health Care Plan?

 

How will this effect my 10 Mental Health Care Plan (MHCP) sessions?
If your telehealth session is bulk billed through Medicare (i.e. there is no out of pocket cost to you), then it counts as 1 of your 10 MHCP sessions for the calendar year. If you’re paying privately or claiming through private health insurance for your telehealth session, it doesn’t count towards the 10 MHCP sessions, and you can use those later.


What happens when I need a Mental Health Care Plan review?
At this stage, MHCP reviews need to still be completed with your GP. If you do not have a valid MHCP or review, we will not be able to bulk bill you for the session, and you will have to pay a private fee. (Info correct as at 24/03/2020)


How do I claim a Medicare rebate?
If your session is bulk billed, we will will process this on your behalf, and you won’t have to do a thing. If you are paying privately, unfortunately you won’t be eligible for a Medicare rebate at this stage.

Useful Websites, Ideas and Apps

The 'Coronavirus' App

Resources to make Homeschooling easier

The 'Coronavirus' App

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 The 'Coronavirus' App was created by the Australian Government to help you get accurate and timely information for the months ahead.   The App can be downloaded in the Apple App Store or Google Play. 

Head to Health

Resources to make Homeschooling easier

The 'Coronavirus' App

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 Head to Health is committed to providing Australians with trusted information and digital supports to help support everyone's mental health and well-being during this pandemic. This page covers where to get the facts about the COVID-19 outbreak, tips for maintaining good mental health, information on how to access mental health services, information for parents, and how to keep older Australians safe and connected by helping them get established online.


Resources to make Homeschooling easier

Resources to make Homeschooling easier

Resources to make Homeschooling easier

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  As many families take on the task of schooling their children at home master teacher Sue-Belinda Meehan, an educator of more than 30-years shares her top websites.

Private Health Funds Supporting Telehealth

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We can confirm that as of March 30 the following 24 health funds have approved telehealth appointments for psychology.

If you are a member of any of these funds, contact them directly for more information.

Zoom adds new security and privacy measures

Zoom will soon turn on passwords and waiting rooms for meetings by default for users on its free tier and those with a single license on its cheapest paid tier in an effort to help prevent “Zoombombing,” or the recent trend of people disrupting Zoom meetings uninvited and sharing shocking or even pornographic content. The new defaults will add real friction to the process of joining a meeting — a process that Zoom had previously made as frictionless as possible to help spur its growth. The changes will take effect starting April 5th. 


Zoom passwords were already turned on by default for new meetings, instant meetings, and meetings you joined with a meeting ID — what’s new starting April 5th is that they’ll be turned on for previously scheduled Zoom meetings as well. And once you’ve joined a meeting, you’ll have to wait for the host to let you in from the new virtual waiting room. The host of the meeting can choose to let people in individually from the waiting room or all at once. 


You can see the new changes in this video from Zoom: https://youtu.be/t6W3XZ2KAqo 

“We’re always striving to deliver our users a secure virtual meeting environment,” Zoom said in a statement to The Verge. “Effective April 5, we are enabling passwords and virtual waiting rooms by default for our Free Basic and Single Pro users. We strongly encourage all users to implement passwords for all of their meetings.” 


Zoom usage has skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic as people have turned to the free video conferencing service to stay in contact with friends, family, colleagues, and even their yoga teachers. But that increased usage has also made the platform a target for hacks, pranks, and harassment, often through Zoombombing. The issue has become serious enough that federal prosecutors are now warning there could be serious legal implications for Zoombombing perpetrators. 


The service’s new default protections may also address other security issues with the platform. Yesterday, it came to light that some security researchers had developed an automated tool that is able to identify 100 non-password-protected Zoom meeting IDs in an hour and scrape information about those meetings — perhaps Zoom’s new passwords-by-default policy could prevent similar scanning tools from finding meeting IDs and private information in the future. 


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