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What do psychologists do?

Psychologists have completed several years of university studies in the science of mental functioning and human behaviour. They are required to undertake extensive, continuing professional supervised training. They have clinical skills that allow them to help people deal more effectively with life problems and address mental health issues of varying degrees of severity.

While anyone can call himself a “therapist”, psychologists must be qualified and licensed by regulatory authorities, just like medical practitioners. They are subject to a professional code of ethics and must maintain high standards of practice. And like doctors, their services are eligible for benefits under Medicare.

Modern psychology changes lives. Research shows that people who receive therapy from a psychologist are better off than 80 per cent of those who have not had therapy.

And the extra care that Psychology Melbourne provides, with our Personal Matching Session, our Constant Care to monitor progress and identify and solve problems, affordable classes and guided access to helpful apps and resources work to ensure better outcomes.

Psychologists are different from psychiatrists. Psychiatrists receive their first training in medicine, and second in pharmacological solutions. Training in psychotherapy comes a distant third. Not surprisingly, most psychiatrists are likely to prescribe drugs. Psychologists receive years of academic training in a variety of psychotherapeutic techniques which have been thoroughly researched and proven to have long-term benefits. Psychologists do not prescribe medication.

Recent research is increasingly challenging the biomedical model of mental illness, which promotes the use of drugs in the treatment of mental health conditions. 

Numerous studies have shown that psychological treatments are at least as effective as drugs in treating the most prevalent conditions, such as depression and anxiety, without the side-effects. In most cases they can be more effective and longer-lasting. A combination of counselling and medication can also be highly effective. If a psychologist believes that medication might be helpful, he or she can make a recommendation to your GP.

Many people have found that talking to a psychologist and learning strategies and practical skills helps free them from anxiety, depression, anger, relationship, family and career problems, addictions or chronic conditions that interfere with their lives, careers or studies.

Psychologists can help people with specific chronic health conditions, and guide them through stressful situations, bereavement issues, pain management and/or workplace problems, including bullying which is an ever-growing problem increasingly being addressed by child psychologists.

Psychologists use a wide variety of evidence-based approaches—including CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy), IPT (Interpersonal Therapy), ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy), Mindfulness, Positive Psychology, IPT (Interpersonal Therapy) and DBT (Dialectical Behaviour Therapy), client-centred and psychodynamic therapy. At Psychology Melbourne, we also support the principle of practice-based evidence and feedback-influenced therapy.

It is significant, however, that decades of research continues to show that the relationship between therapist and client is by far the most critical factor in achieving positive outcomes, independently of any specific technique and its supporting evidence. Technique accounts for as little as 1-4% of treatment effects.

Psychology Melbourne is one of the few practices that work consciously to achieve the best therapeutic relationship through our personal matching service.

Psychologists are also trained and licensed to administer and interpret a number of tests and assessments that can help diagnose a condition more clearly or reveal insights into the way a person thinks, feels and behaves. At Psychology Melbourne we have a large selection of psychological tests available, including online tests.

Psychology Melbourne has a large team of clinical, counselling and other registered psychologists, including a number with endorsed qualifications or specific expertise in various fields, including child and adolescent psychology, relationship and family counselling, drug and alcohol counselling and sports psychology, as well as health issues like fertility and IVF counselling, diabetes and cancer counselling and organisational psychology.

Exhaustive studies have indicated that there is a significant gap between the outcomes of the most highly-effective therapists and lesser therapists. The most effective therapists' clients show both more rapid and substantial treatment response. 

Our practice focuses on identifying and promoting superior practice and supporting it with a variety of systems aimed at establishing Psychology Melbourne as a centre of excellence.

Medicare Rebate for Psychologist Counselling


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"It is never too late to be what you might have been."

—George Eliot

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