Better Access to Mental Health (BAMH)

Helping Children With Autism (HCWA)

Better Access to Mental Health (BAMH)

Where eligible, rebates are provided by Medicare if you are referred to the Psychologist under a Mental Health Care Plan

To access mental health treatment under Medicare you must be referred by your GP, a psychiatrist or a paediatrician. If a GP is the referring practitioner he or she will need to prepare a Mental Health Treatment Plan before referring you to a psychologist. You should book a longer session with your GP to enable time for this.

Under the Better Access initiative, eligible people can receive up to 10 individual sessions in a calendar year (1 January to 31 December). 

Referrals cannot be provided for the full 10 sessions. A referral is for a maximum of six sessions. Your referring doctor will assess your progress after the first six sessions and determine whether further sessions are needed.

Helping Children With Autism (HCWA) 
For children who have, or are suspected of having, an autism spectrum disorder.


Under the government funded Helping Children with Autism (HCWA) initiative Medicare rebates are available for assessment and treatment services for children and young people with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Assessment and treatment can be provided by a number of eligible allied health professionals under this initiative.

Assessment services are available up until the child’s 13th birthday, and treatment services are available up until a child turns 15 years of age, provided their treatment plan was in place before their 13th birthday.

Before a psychologist can undertake an assessment, the young person must have been referred for assessment by a paediatrician or consultant psychiatrist.

Under this initiative, up to four assessment sessions provided by a psychologist and other allied health professionals are available to assist the referring practitioner with diagnosis, or to contribute to a child’s treatment and management plan.

In addition, up to 20 treatment sessions provided by a psychologist and other allied health professionals are available.

It is important to note that these are the total number of services available to each child through HCWA – not an annual entitlement.