COVID-19 Health Policy

We understand individuals, families and communities may be experiencing different forms of stress and anxiety due to the recent changes regarding COVID19. At Breathe Psychology our first and foremost commitment is the health and well-being of our clients, staff and community. Like everyone else we are trying to find the right balance between being calm, while also being very thoughtful and proactive in our response to the facts and fears about the Coronavirus. 

To help manage the health – and just as importantly the nerves and anxiety – of our community, will ask that you please take care to ensure that you are feeling physically well when you attend your psychology appointments.  Please be assured our clinicians will adhere to the same standards.

Guided by the Current public health recommendations, we ask that you please plan ahead and reschedule or request a Telehealth (telephone or video) appointment if:

  • You have returned from any overseas travel in the last 14 days or, 
  • You have been, or think you may have been in close or casual contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or, 
  • You are experiencing even mild shortness of breath, sore throat, cough, cold, fever or flu-like symptoms.

If you are unsure whether or not you should come into the practice, please err on the side of caution and contact as soon as possible. As you can imagine this is a very busy time for all health services so notifying us promptly will assist us greatly in providing much needed support for all.

If you cannot attend your appointment due to public health recommendations or you are feeling anxious or uncertain about face to face appointments, we are able to provide you with phone or video psychology consultation (i.e. Telehealth). Medicare items have recently been made available via Telehealth for those affected by COVID-19. Please call us to discuss these options.


Where can I find more information?

Some mainstream media coverage about COVID-19 can encourage unhelpful and unnecessary hyper-vigilance and paranoia, particularly in individuals who are already predisposed to anxiety and worry. For this reason, we encourage individuals to attempt to limit media exposure related to COVID-19 and instead try to find reliable sources with relevant factual information. We have composed the following list to assist with this:

Australian Government Department of Health

The Department of Health and other Local Government websites have developed a collection of resources for the general public, health professionals and industry about coronavirus (COVID-19), including translated resources.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides reliable information about the coronavirus such as its symptoms, steps you can take to protect yourself, and what to do if you are affected.

Travel advice

Smart Traveller will provide you with the latest information and safe travel advice.

World Health Organization

The World Health Organization provides information and guidance regarding the current outbreak of coronavirus disease.


FAQ

Q. What if I develop symptoms within the 48 hour cancelation period?

A. Public health and safety needs to be a priority at trying times like these and we understand circumstances can change quickly. If you are concerned you have developed symptoms we are happy to provide a Telehealth session. Your health and the health of our clinicians is our priority.

Q. Do I need to wear a mask to my appointment?

A. It is now a requirement for people in Victoria to wear masks or a face coverings and given the close contact in a Therapy setting, we ask that you do to protect the health of yourself and our clinicians. There are exemptions however which you can find on DHHS website here. If these apply to you then you are of course exempt from wearing one. 

There are also some exemptions that apply to our clinicians who fall under the below category:

  • Persons whose professions require clear enunciation or visibility of their mouth. This includes teaching or live broadcasting. 

Due to this, depending on the nature of your individual requirements, our therapists at times may not wear a mask (they will however still wear a face shield). This will be at the approval of yourself prior to your session commencing. 

Q. What precautions are you taking to assist with the health and safety of clients and clinicians?

A. We will ask you to use hand sanitiser upon entering the room for your appointment. There will also be hand sanitiser located in the the waiting room and the usual soap products available in the bathroom. Our clinicians will disinfect all surfaces before and after each appointment and will also wash their hands and use hand sanitiser before and after appointments. The following precautionary measures also apply:
– There will be no hand shakes.
– The Clinician and client will sit at a distance of at least 1.5 meter apart. Rooms will be ventilated.
– Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
– Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
– Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
– Face coverings are required.
– Tea and coffee facilities are currently not available.

Q. What happens if my usual clinician falls ill or has to adhere to self isolation regulations?

A. You will be advised via phone call or email and we will work out the best way for you to still receive on going support; be that via Telehealth with your regular clinician, temporary referral to another psychologist or other support networks that may be appropriate. We are committed to our clients well being and will endeavour to work out the best solution that meets the individuals needs.

If you have further questions or concerns please feel free to contact us directly.