What is evidence based practice?
As in other health related fields of practice psychologists regularly seek to understand mental health conditions further and to investigate the effectiveness of various treatment approaches to psychological conditions using scientific research. Evidence based practice refers to the integration of the most relevant and up to date scientific research with clinical expertise and the ability to apply this knowledge and expertise in a flexible way based on the individual characteristics and values of the patient.
At Dr Amy Talbot & Associates we want to ensure that you receive the best treatment possible that has the highest likelihood for achieving your therapy goals. In order to achieve this we remain up to date with relevant scientific research on effective treatments and regularly attend professional development and training activities. Our treatment recommendations are always based on evidence based practice and are tailored to your individual circumstances and needs.
What can I expect from therapy?
We recognise that seeing a psychologist for the first time can be daunting and that it is difficult to share personal information with someone you have just met. Most people feel nervous before attending their first session. Your psychologist understands the range of emotions people face at their first appointment and will assist you to feel comfortable so that you can share your concerns in a safe and supportive environment. Making the decision to see a psychologist is a brave first step towards making the change you want to see in your life.
The first appointment is an opportunity for the psychologist to meet you and to develop an understanding of the history and nature of your current difficulties so that they can make recommendations about what treatment approach might be right for you. This often involves the psychologist asking a number of questions about your concerns and background. Your psychologist will also ask about your goals for treatment to ensure that the plan they propose will assist you to get the most out of coming and they may ask you to complete some questionnaires.
The first appointment is also an opportunity for you to ask the psychologist any questions you may have. The psychologist will then discuss any treatment options that are available and will make recommendations on the best course of treatment to address your current difficulties. Although your psychologist may occasionally give you guidance on some simple strategies straight away, the first appointment is best thought of as an opportunity to get to know each other rather than the start of treatment.
What happens in subsequent sessions is somewhat dependent on the specific difficulties you are facing and the treatment model that you are working in (for more information about treatment approaches please click here). In most cases sessions will involve you working together with your therapist to develop practical strategies that will allow you to cope with your current difficulties more effectively. Treatment will also most likely involve you working on tasks in between sessions to assist you to develop effective skills that you can continue to apply in the long term after you have finished treatment. In this way therapy equips you to become like your own therapist!
Treatment often starts with regular weekly or fortnightly sessions but may progress over time to less frequent sessions (e.g. monthly) to allow you more time to implement skills in between sessions. Your therapist will discuss the recommended frequency of sessions with you at the initial appointment based on the treatment plan that you have developed together.
How do I make an appointment?
The best way to make an appointment is to contact us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 02 8814 5703. We will respond to your request as soon as possible and usually within 24 hours.
How long are appointments?
The initial session goes for 90 minutes to ensure there is sufficient time to discuss your concerns and goals for treatment, answer your questions and develop a treatment plan. Most subsequent sessions are 50 minutes in duration. Occasionally there is a need to have longer sessions; your therapist will discuss this with you in advance if needed. Please ensure that you arrive on time for your appointment as we are unable to extend sessions beyond the allocated time.
How long does therapy take?
This is a difficult question to answer as it varies greatly between individuals and is influenced by a number of factors including the nature and complexity of the issue, goals of treatment, motivation to change and external factors separate from treatment. Some simple issues may be addressed within a short time frame of 2-3 sessions while other more complex difficulties can take much longer. Few difficulties can be resolved immediately and change requires a commitment to regular attendance as well as to implementing skills outside of the sessions. Your psychologist will be able to give you some guidance on the likely number of sessions needed after a treatment plan has been established (usually at the initial appointment). This recommendation will be reviewed over the course of treatment.
I live in a regional or rural area can I still access treatment?
Yes, at Dr Amy Talbot & Associates we are passionate about improving access to evidence based therapy for all individuals regardless of their location. With this aim in mind we offer phone consultations and Skype appointments to patients in regional and rural areas. Please note that in some cases Skype or telephone consultations may not be an appropriate option; if this is the case we will assist you to link in with a more appropriate service. Please contact us to discuss your options further. Please note that unfortunately phone and Skype consultations are not claimable through Medicare.