Mental Health and Substance Use Support

Detailed information on how to obtain referrals, rebates and appointments

  • For Patients
    Call Dr Sonia zammit on 0435 403 639, Richmond office 9429 1811, or Deer Park Office 93636101 to have a confidential discussion about your individual needs, referral options and preference for psychologist and appointment time. Alternatively ask you Dr to fax a referral to our Richmond office (03) 9425 9551 or deer park office (03) 9363 6121. It is recommended to see you GP to see if you qualify for any care plans to allow access to medicare rebates or other funding support. A copy of your referral must be brought to the office on your first appointment. Please ensure the referral is addressed to Psychologist - Choices Mind & Body. Following first contact or receipt of your referral, a Psychologist will aim to contact you within one week. You will be advised of any wait list times and we apologise if there is a delay in obtaining an appointment for you. While we aim to address any preference for a particular psychologist, you may also be offered an appointment time with an alternate psychologist based on your individual needs and to allow earliest availability to support. For details of individual practitioners see X page and see ‘frequently asked questions’ for common queries related to accessing support and first sessions.
  • General Practitioner
    Please assess if patients are eligible for a Mental Health Care Plan or Review, Chronic Disease Management Plan, TAC or work cover referral. Address referrals to - Psychologist, Choices Mind & Body. For a preference for a particular psychologist please note this underneath practice name; Dr Sonia Zammit, Darryl Ribaux, or Dr. Tamsin Short Please fax a copy of the referral to our Richmond office (03) 9425 9551 or deer park office (03) 9363 6121.
    • Within the Mental Health Treatment Plan or Review there must be a reference stating referral to a psychologist as part of this plan
    • Please ensure referring Dr’s provider name and number, client contact details, and date of the referral is clearly detailed.
    • Please state the type of referral e.g. 2710 or 2712
    • Please state the number of sessions clients are being referred for (up to 6)
    • A paper copy of the plan should be signed
    • Please forward a copy of the plan via fax or provide this to the client to bring to their consultation.
    Clients can also contact the preferred clinic or Dr Sonia Zammit directly to discuss referrals and any queries on 0435 403 639, Richmond Office 9429 1811, or Deer Park Office 93636101. All new appointments are screened by Dr Zammit prior to offering an appointment to ensure most appropriate treatment is accessed by clients. Clients will be contacted within a week of first contact or referral being received and advised of any wait period. In every instance, we will attempt to link clients with any preferred psychologist. However clients will also be provided with offer of appointment with alternate psychologists to ensure earliest availability to support. If you would like to discuss the referral directly with a psychologist, please do not hesitate to contact the specific psychologist at the clinic or Dr Sonia Zammit on 0435 403 639. All Psychologists’ with Choices Mind & Body are committed to working with GP’s to ensure your clients receive the best possible treatment outcomes. You will be provided with a progress report following the first assessment if deemed necessary or requested, following the 6th and 10th treatment sessions for Better Access referrals, to communicate significant change in presentation or risk issues, and following termination of treatment. Please do not hesitate to contact psychologists directly for an update on client progress at time, or to advise of any concerns or treatment recommendations.
  • Allied Health and Corrections
    Please encourage your client to see their GP to assess for eligibility to any Medicare Rebates or Funding sources to support access to treatment You can support your client to make their first appointment by being present with them when making the first contact. We request to speak directly with a client prior to booking a first appointment to ensure we immediately develop a context which supports their autonomy and right to make choices in their treatment. You can support clients to contact the preferred clinic or Dr Sonia Zammit directly to discuss referrals and any queries on 0435 403 639, Richmond Office 9429 1811, or Deer Park Office 93636101. All new appointments are screened by Dr Zammit prior to offering an appointment to ensure most appropriate treatment is accessed by clients. You can also forward a client’s referral from their GP, and any supporting documents or support letters you may have with the clients consent. We will then contact clients within a week of receiving the referral. Referrals can be faxed to Richmond office (03) 9425 9551 or deer park office (03) 9363 6121. You can provide information to facilitate the referral, however Psychologists are unable to confirm attendance to treatment or speak with you regarding client treatment without first obtaining consent from the client directly. This includes for corrections officers who are encouraging clients to seek voluntary or mandated support. It may be helpful for you to obtain written consent from your client when you are facilitating the referral to open up communication immediately. This will need to be forwarded to the psychologist prior to any disclosure of information. Please note that court reports and support letters are not provided as part of standard treatment under a Mental Health Care Plan. Clients need to discuss this directly with the psychologist and additional fees for reports may be charged.
  • Family and Other’s supporting someone to access support
    We believe at Choices Mind & Body that individuals have the right to make decisions regarding what is appropriate treatment choices for them. Therefore we require contact with the individual seeking support prior to booking a first appointment. We understand family and supports may be concerned regarding someone’s mental health and safety. You can contact us to enquire about the best way to support someone to access treatment. It may be helpful for you to encourage the individual to be with you when you make the call. Contact the preferred clinic or Dr Sonia Zammit directly to discuss on 0435 403 639, Richmond Office 9429 1811, or Deer Park Office 93636101. Contact with their General Practitioner is often a good first step to access support. The GP will be able to assess if the individual is eligible for any medicare or funding support to access treatment. You may be able to help them attend an appointment with their GP. You can also support the person seeking treatment by forwarding their referral and any further documentation with the persons consent by fax to Richmond office (03) 9425 9551 or deer park office (03) 9363 6121. If you are concerned regarding their immediate safety please see crisis support contacts at X. There are also a number of family support options on this page. Carers and family members are encouraged to consider if they would benefit from their own support from a psychologist or agency to ensure your emotional and practical needs are attended to. Please call to discuss this option or speak with your GP to assess if you are eligible to any treatment plans or funding support. You may be invited to attend a treatment session with the psychologist to support the person seeking treatment. However the psychologist will require consent from their client prior to this occurring. This includes first appointments, and therefore the psychologist will always seek permission from the individual prior to you coming to into a consultation. Due to privacy laws, psychologist are bound by strict confidentiality restrictions which do not allow us to discuss an individual’s attendance, diagnoses, or treatment with another person without an individual’s consent. If you would like to speak with someone’s psychologist it is best to ask the person for permission to do this. A psychologist may be able to hear your concerns if you phone them, however they will be unable to provide you with any information. They will also likely inform their client of any contact they may have had with you to ensure transparency and trust with the person seeking support. There are a few circumstances when someone is at immediate risk of harm to themselves, or to another person when confidentiality can be breeched without an individual’s consent. If you believe a circumstances falls within this context, please feel free to contact the psychologist and they can guide you further on the call. We understand that parents and guardians of youth clients may be concerned regarding their children’s safety and behaviour. Please remember that as psychologists, it is our ethical obligation to also ensure the immediate safety of our clients is attended to. For youth clients, it is common for parents to be present during some consultations and we appreciate your support. However it is often necessary for a psychologist to also meet individually with your child. Please do not hesitate to speak with the psychologist regarding any concerns.