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How to find a f***ing therapist in Australia for cheap

By Sarah Robinson on October 8, 2020

Therapists help you notice bull shit patterns in behaviour that no longer work for you. They create a space where you can work through these patterns, and be better than everyone else.

So, how the f*** do you find a good one?

If you live in Australia where healthcare exists, here’s how.

1. Book a sesh with your GP

Tell the receptionist you need a long appointment for a Mental Health Care Plan (MHC Plan). If you’re povo or a cheap skate, find a GP that bulk bills to Medicare. That means the GP appointment is free.

What’s a Mental Health Care Plan?

A questionnaire that asks things like, how are you sleeping? Do you think about stabbing yourself in the face every morning?* You need to fill one out to qualify for the Medicare rebate (AKA cheaper therapy sessions).

* They don’t actually ask that.

How much free therapy do I get?

  • Once you’re on the MHC Plan you get 6 subsidised therapy sessions.
  • The rebate gives you back $124.50 per 50+ minute session.
  • If you find a therapist who is cheaper, there may be no gap.
  • Otherwise you pay the diff.
  • After 6 sessions, you can go back to your GP and ask for 4 more.
  • In total, you can get 10 subsidised sessions over 12 months.
  • When 12 months is up, you can do another MHC plan and get another 10.

2. What happens at the GP?

You’ll be asked to fill out the MHC Plan. Your GP also needs to give you a referral to see a therapist. A GP referral lasts 12 months. (Referrals from specialists only last three.)

How the f*** do I find the right therapist?

Your GP should be able to recommend a therapist to you. But sometimes they’re crap at that, so it can be good to come in with a name, just in case. How?

  • Ask your mates if they see a good therapist. Get the name.
  • Go online and check out therapists in your area.
  • If you’re seeking therapy for a particular issue, like addiction or an eating disorder, find a therapist with specialist knowledge of this area.
  • If you’ll be triggered by seeing a particular gender, rule them out.
  • Check to see the therapist does Medicare rebates. Some don’t.
  • Go online and see if they have positive reviews or are not a convicted felon.
  • If you can, call them on the phone for a brief chat to see if you vibe.

3. Got the referral?

Go to the mother f***ing therapist. If you don’t gel, go back to the GP and get a referral to a different one. This can be annoying, but it’s so important to find a therapist that gets you. Seriously.

Once you find the right therapist, it will all be worthwhile.

Can’t see a therapist physically?

Many do online sessions, which are weird at first, but still work well. Headspace.org.au also has free online therapy, which is bloody good. If you’re in immediate crisis, you can call Lifeline any time on 13 11 14.

For more on finding a therapist check out episode 15 of our podcast. To listen, search ‘F*ck off and die’ on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Acast or wherever you get your pods.

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