The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety – worthwhile or not? What the AMA, ANMF and Universities Australia have to say

aged care royal commission

On September 16, the government announced its plans to establish a Royal Commission that is expected to look into the conditions of the aged care sector in Australia. The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety covers not only residential and home aged care but also young Australians with disabilities living in residential aged [Read More…]

Selective editing of reviews: illegal or not? AHPRA draws the line

illegal testimonials AHPRA

In light of a recent incident where an organisation was publishing only positive reviews from consumers, AHPRA has published further guidance for advertisers of regulated health services to clarify which review or testimonial editing practices are deemed illegal. AHPRA stressed on the importance of advertisers being responsible of their advertising obligations in accordance with the [Read More…]

ADNet to accelerate research for the prevention and treatment of Dementia

Australian Dementia Network ADNet

On 2nd July 2018, the Turnbull Government announced plans of the establishment of the Australian Dementia Network (ADNet). ADNet, once established will be considered as the largest single research program to be funded to date through the Government’s Boosting Dementia Research Initiative. Spearheaded by Professor Christopher Rowe of Austin Health, ADNet commits to facilitate high-quality [Read More…]

Are prisoners getting the mental health care they deserve?

mental health for prisoners

In light of the momentum given to the issue of mental health in the federal budget, and reports of a psychiatric patient being kept in prison because of a lack of appropriate high security mental health facilities, several health industry organisations have raised concerns about the state of mental health care of prisoners in Australia. [Read More…]

ATAR and OP List for 14 courses Australia-wide

atar for all courses

Dentistry  It takes a minimum of 5 – 7 years to become a dentist in Australia. Currently, there are six universities who take undergraduate students directly into their dentistry courses while three courses have pathways available for high achieving year 12 students. Each University have different admission requirements to qualify. Some require an UMAT, some [Read More…]

ATAR requirements for every psychology degree in Australia

atar for psychology

For entry into a psychology course commencing in 2018, the ATAR ranged from 55 to 99.00 depending on the course and university. While most undergraduate psychology degrees are 3 years, the courses that include a pathway into the 4th year (honours) generally require a higher ATAR or OP for entry. Graduates of a number of [Read More…]

Australian, American, British and New Zealand organisations join forces to close the life expectancy gap of the mentally-ill

exercise for mental illness

In mid-May of this year, Exercise & Sports Science Australia (ESSA), the American College of Sports Medicine, the British Association of Sport and Exercise Science, and Sport and Exercise Science New Zealand officially released the first joint international consensus statement dubbed as “The Role of Sport, Exercise, and Physical Activity in Closing the Life Expectancy [Read More…]

Federal Budget 2018/19: What’s in it for key health industry organisations?

Health Federal Budget 2018

Pharmacy, nursing, exercise physiology, medicine, occupational therapy, dentistry, mental health, consumers and public health….. your guide to what happened in the 2018/2019 health budget. It’s a 20 minute read, so prepare your favourite cup of tea and settle in. Pharmacy The Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia (SHPA) welcomed the 2018 Health Budget’s support for [Read More…]

4 practitioners on what it means to practice mindfulness in health care

nicole grant

To wrap up our Mindful May theme in My Health Career, we are very pleased to feature the comments of a physiotherapist, psychologist, nurse educator and occupational therapist about their mindfulness practice. Here’s what they have to say… Phebe Liston – Physiotherapist  “I started actively practicing mindfulness around my second year as a physiotherapy graduate. It [Read More…]

Be compassionate towards yourself: A psychologist’s view on mindfulness – by Dr Tara Hickey

tara hickey

Victoria State Representative for Compassionate Mind Australia, Dr Tara Hickey, details in this Q&A her initial experiences and challenges in practicing mindfulness. She shares the benefits of mindfulness in her life in general and as a psychologist. Lucky for us, she also provided tips on how to practice mindfulness! What made you decide to practice [Read More…]

How mindfulness can help you as the practitioner in the therapy room – by Samantha Clarke

Samantha Clarke

Last year, MHC received a great deal of submissions from our fellow health and mindfulness practitioners as we introduced our Mindful May 2017 theme. This year, MHC is continuing the tradition of advocating mindfulness as an essential tool in getting through life as a health professional. In this article from Dr Samantha Clarke, she shares [Read More…]

Self-care now an official Physician’s Pledge – by Kathryn Choules

Kathryn Choules landscape

I remember receiving Kathryn’s piece on mindfulness when we first ran the #MindfulMay theme in 2017. I was so pleased to have the opportunity to share a contribution from someone with such a profound depth of understanding of mindfulness and was delighted that Kathryn contributed again this year. I love that she’s written about self-care [Read More…]

Is mindfulness “right” for you? Here’s how it transformed my practice – by Amanda Griffiths, founder MHC


I’m not here to say whether mindfulness may be right or wrong for you. Only you can explore that for yourself. However, I would really, really like to share the stuff I’ve come across during my mindfulness journey in the hope that it will give you a greater understanding of what mindfulness is and isn’t. [Read More…]

APS supports Indigenous mental-health framework

Indigenous mental health framework

The Australian Psychological Society (APS) has advocated for the implementation of the National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People’s Mental Health and Social and Emotional Wellbeing 2017 – 2023. The APS believes that a joint commitment from both the indigenous communities and the government will make way for successful outcomes for Australia’s [Read More…]

What Makes a Good Psychologist? Advice for Psychology Students


Psychologists play a vital if somewhat low profile role within Australia’s fast growing healthcare sector. They do this by helping their patients understand and effectively deal with their mental health issues, learning difficulties and challenges adjusting to new environments on a daily basis. With the stigma surrounding mental illness having lifted in recent years, thanks [Read More…]

From the boards – OT, psychology, and pharmacy competency standards and curriculum changes

Updates from the AHPRA boards March 2018

The Boards of three of the major health care professions; occupational therapy, pharmacy and psychology; have recently launched their new competency standards, assessment guidelines, and examination curriculum respectively. The Occupational Therapy Board of Australia released the data 11 months ahead of its effectivity on January 1, 2019 to make practitioners familiar about the changes for [Read More…]

Psychologist Tracey McGrath on what she loves about guiding clients to happiness

Tracey McGrath

“I love being a psychologist. There is nothing more thrilling than seeing someone turn their life around through more effective thinking and behaving. It’s all about quality of life and helping people’s happiness. Client turnaround One of my favourite client turnarounds is what I mentally call “the 20 minute butterfly” story.  I was working with [Read More…]

Three psychologists on their love for work and love for life

Oliver Brecht

This February we wanted to celebrate love not just on Valentine’s Day, but all month long. We wanted to know what it is that psychologists love about their careers. Here’s what we found…… Grant Brecht, Managing Director and Psychologist at Insight Elite Performance Psychology: “For me, helping people have a flexible, Adaptable, Rational, Positive and [Read More…]

What it’s like being a health professional with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – by Amanda Griffiths, founder MHC

AMG PAH with MHC poster

The two things that distressed me the most with respect to my professional life were my fears. I was scared to death that I was going to make a mistake that would lead to the harm of a patient. I was freaking out that I was going to cause someone to become vision impaired, blind, [Read More…]

Psychologists, GPs, surgeons, nurses and psychiatrists raise concerns for the wellbeing of asylum seekers

Australian health industry stance for refugees and asylum seekers

The ratification of the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT), announced by the Australian government in February 2017, was implemented in December. The federal government is moving to work closely with different states and territories to prevent torture incidents in detention sites. However, there [Read More…]

2017 – My year in review – by Amanda Griffiths, founder My Health Career

Heart Reef

2017 literally started off with a bang. And ash. Funnily enough it was the ash that made the experience what it was…… I went to the New Years’ Eve Gala at the Opera House, and so saw Sydney’s incredible fireworks display right in the thick of things. The finale of the fireworks was so spectacular [Read More…]

Paramedicine Board of Australia to be established, nursing & midwifery to be established as separate professions & AHPRA disciplinary enforcement powers to be strengthened

Paramedicine Board of Australia

The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and National Boards have welcomed the passing of two legislative reforms by the Queensland Parliament and the Parliament of Western Australia in September. A first since the establishment of the National Scheme in 2010, the reforms, Health Practitioner Regulation National Law and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 and [Read More…]

A big YES from Australians and the health industry on same sex marriage

same sex marriage health

Following on from the recent survey on same sex marriage, the marriage equality bill will be introduced into the House of Representatives on Monday 4th December. The Australian Psychological Society (APS), Australian Medical Association (AMA), and Australian Nursing Midwifery Federation (ANMF) strongly welcomed the momentous day the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey resulted in a [Read More…]

Almost 10% of the Australian population receiving Medicare-subsidized mental health care

Medicare-subsidized mental health services

Three days after the celebration of the World Mental Health Day on October 10, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) released the report Mental Health Services: In brief 2017. According to the report, more Australians received Medicare-subsidised mental health care service in 2015 – 2016 than in 2011 – 2012. The data is [Read More…]

World-first guide to developing a workplace wellbeing strategy in health service settings launched by beyondblue

beyondblue health workforce mental health

beyondblue has acted on evidence suggesting that health professionals are at a greater risk of experiencing depression, anxiety and suicide, to produce a guide for health services in developing a workplace mental health strategy. There are a number of benefits for health services that focus on creating mentally healthy workplaces. Research suggests that: Patient experiences [Read More…]

Health Workforce Scholarship Program for rural practitioners starting soon

Health Workforce Scholarship Program

Health Workforce Scholarship Program (HWSP) is a new $11 million scholarship program that is set to better target financial support to health professionals working in communities most in need. This program is a consolidation of previous scholarship programs. The program will be delivered by a consortium of Rural Workforce Agencies which led by Health Workforce [Read More…]

The health and well-being of Australian health professionals – by Kay Dunkely


October is Mental Health Month and it is important for all health professionals to focus on their own mental health to ensure they are in a good position to look after others. Two sayings that come to mind are “put on your own oxygen mask first so that you can help others” and “you can’t [Read More…]

ATARs for every psychology course in Australia

ATAR for psychology 2017

For entry into a psychology course commencing in 2017, the ATAR ranged from 55 to 99.00 depending on the course and university. While most undergraduate psychology degrees are 3 years, the courses that include the 4th year (honours) generally require a higher ATAR or OP for entry. Graduates of a number of degrees including psychological [Read More…]

Volunteer OTs, psychologists & speechies called on to support refugees and asylum seekers in Victoria

support for refugees

Through the work of the Disability Action Group, AMES Australia have initiated establishment of Refugee Disability Network (RDN) with Occupational Therapy Australia, Speech Pathology Australia and the Australian Psychological Society. The work of RDN is focused on providing immediate, practical solutions to improve health outcomes for newly arrived Refugees by creating shorter pathways to specialist [Read More…]

Reminder to check, correct & comply with professional and legal advertising obligations

regulated health service advertising

Registered health practitioners are reminded to check, correct and comply with their professional and legal advertising obligations. The National Boards and the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) have published a strategy for the National Scheme to help keep health service consumers safe from misleading advertising. AHPRA CEO Mr Fletcher said, “The National Law limits [Read More…]

APS welcomes Medicare rebate for rural & remote clients’ online video consultations with psychologists

medicare rebate for psychology videoconferencing consultations

The Australian Psychological Society (APS) has warmly welcomed the Government’s announcement that people living in rural and remote Australia will be able to claim a Medicare rebate for online videoconferencing consultations with psychologists. APS President Anthony Cichell said that this will provide greater equity of access to evidence-based psychological care for Australians living in remote areas. [Read More…]

Revised psychology 4+2 pathway guidelines operational today

revised 4+2 psychology internship guidelines

Changes to the Psychology Board of Australia’s 4+2 pathway into effect today. This means that from today: All new applications for approval of a 4+2 internship program must include an internship plan that meets the requirements of the revised guideline. The Board starts to accept applications for general registration from current 4+2 pathway provisional psychologists [Read More…]

Mindfulness for health professionals – by Dr Kathryn Choules (PhD) and Dr Samantha Clarke (PhD)

Kathryn Choules

Due to my own developing interest in mindfulness in my own practice as an optometrist, and for the wider community of health practitioners, I thought it was worth asking mindfulness teachers and psychologists about how health practitioners can be mindful in their practice and interactions with patients. I was fortunate enough to receive responses from [Read More…]

Kindness and compassion to avoid practitioner burnout and aid patient healing

compassion for health care providers

A Stanford University study suggested that a lack of compassion in health professionals not only affect patients who experience their unkind behavior from their practitioner, but also induces stress and burnout to the health providers themselves. The study examined possible practical steps to increase compassion, thereby benefitting both provider well-being and patient care. This study [Read More…]

Quick Ways to Ground Yourself with Difficult Clients in Session – by Psychologist Dr Samantha Clarke

Samantha Clarke

We asked psychologist Dr Samantha Clarke for her tips on tips on how therapists can stay in mindful awareness when working with clients. Here’s what she said: Take a moment to become aware of your breath. Practice your mindful breathing and allow yourself to stay with 3 slow long breaths. Take the pressure off, remember [Read More…]

Is mindfulness for everyone? What do psychologists have to say?

mindfulness benefits and side effects

Despite of the fact that mindfulness has been seen an ascendency in popularity due to the fast pace of our modern lives and increasingly recommended by professionals in the therapy arena, some practitioners and scientists began to question whether mindfulness is really effective as a therapeutic technique. An article by UK psychologists Miguel Farias and [Read More…]

Believe in Change says Australian Psychological Society

APS believe in change campaign

The Australian Psychological Society (APS) has launched Believe in Change, a campaign encouraging Australians to seek psychological assistance for mental health and life issues. The campaign emphasizes that change is possible and psychological assistance is there to help so no one should be struggling alone. According to the APS, millions of Australians with mental health [Read More…]

New index to examine geographic supply of clinical health workforce for Indigenous Australians

spatial distribution of clinical health workforce

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare utilised a new measure for its report, Spatial distribution of the supply of the clinical health workforce 2014: relationship to the distribution of the Indigenous population. The measure is Geographically-adjusted Index of Relative Supply (GIRS), which was developed to overcome limitations in using relatively simple provider-to-population ratios to [Read More…]

Robot revolution: why technology for older people must be designed with care and respect

robots for dementia care

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Nola Ries, University of Newcastle and Taro Sugihara, Okayama University Many countries around the world have ageing populations and a growing prevalence of dementia. Japan, in particular, is a “super-ageing” society, with a population getting older faster than anywhere else in the world [Read More…]

Australian Dental Association shares concerns about MBS Review

MBS Review Taskforce

The Australian Dental Association (ADA) has raised some matters of concern around the MBS review taskforce, including intravenous sedation in dental procedures, private insurance, and dental services for special needs patients. The ADA recommends: Restriction of the rebate payment for sedation services when suitably trained and endorsed dentists were not able to provide the sedation [Read More…]

Recommendations for Indigenous suicide prevention

recommendations for indigenous suicide prevention

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention Evaluation Project (ATSISPEP) is a solution that arose from Indigenous community members, leaders in mental health and suicide prevention, and the Australian Government as a response to the Indigenous suicide problem. Suicide is one of the most common causes of death among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander [Read More…]

Feedback sought on Parliamentary inquiry into mental health services in the NDIS


As part of the Joint Standing Committee inquiry into the implementation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) scheme, the committee will inquire into the provision of services under the NDIS for people with a mental illness. This parliamentary inquiry has been welcomed by Community Mental Health Australia (CMHA). They are concerned about the needs [Read More…]

Mental health research funding decrease


The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) data revealed that funding for mental health research is significantly lower than other National Health Priority Areas. The data shows that mental health and suicide research have not been given enough attention compared to other areas such as cancer and even motor vehicle accidents, despite mental illness [Read More…]

Becoming a provider in the NDIS


Registration for individuals or organisations to become a provider of support or products to a participant in the NDIS is open. Key points for consideration for becoming a provider are: So far 17,300 people are benefitting from the NDIS across seven trial sites with over $950 million invested in services and equipment The roll out [Read More…]

Funding for preventative health initiatives reduced: Australia’s Health 2016 report


The Australia’s Health 2016 report has revealed that funding for prevention initiatives has reduced from 2.2% (2008) to 1.4%, contrary to the belief that prevention is better than cure. This goes against the expectation of 76% of Australians that investment in preventive health should be one of the top ten priorities. Public Health Association of [Read More…]

Identifying mood changes in bipolar disorder with smartphones


New research led by M. Faurholt-Jepsen at Copenhagen suggests that smartphone based vocal analysis can measure changes in speech which often indicate depression and mania in bipolar disorder. The researchers collected data from 28 bipolar disorder outpatients of the Copenhagen Clinic for Affective Disorders. They were observed in naturalistic settings on a daily basis during [Read More…]

ATARs for every psychology course in Australia

raining ATARS

For entry into a psychology course commencing in 2016, the ATAR ranged from 54.20 to 99.00 depending on the course and university. While most undergraduate psychology degrees are 3 years, the courses that include the 4th year (honours) generally require a higher ATAR or OP for entry. Graduates of a number of degrees including psychological [Read More…]

Exhilarating! My week with the Royal Flying Doctor Service – by Rebecca Irwin – medical student and NRHSN Chair

Rebecca Irwin RFDS week

The unique exhilarating experience of flying to remote communities and stations to provide health care is unparalleled by anything I have experienced thus far. I loved flying with the Royal Flying Doctors Service (RFDS) to remote locations, hopping from station to station, community to community, providing health care as we went. Occasionally we were diverted [Read More…]

Is online therapy as good as talking face-to-face with a clinician?

online psychological therapy effectiveness

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Jo Abbott, Swinburne University of Technology Smartphones, tablets and computers are increasingly expanding the availability of health services. This means we can access help anonymously at a time and place that suits us. Currently, only about one-third of people with mental health difficulties [Read More…]

Skilled Occupations List submissions put workforce shortages and excesses in the spotlight

Skilled Occupation List 2016

The new Skilled Occupations List (SOL) comes into effect on 1st July 2016. There have been changes to the status of a number of health professions, and a large number have been flagged for consideration in 2017. Health professions being added to SOL from 1st July 2016: Orthotist or prosthetist Audiologist Health professions being removed [Read More…]

Transitioning to academia for early career psychologists

transitioning from early career psychologist into academia

The Australian Psychological Society (APS) has featured insights from Dr Jason M. Lodge MAPS MCOP about the challenges early career psychologists face in transitioning into academia. He says that it is particularly difficult for early career psychologists and psychological scientists to effectively transition into an academic role, given the fact that higher education is experiencing [Read More…]

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is welcoming providers from July 2016

how to be a provider with the NDIS

Participation in the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will soon become available for every health professional interested to become a provider. Over 460,000 Australians with disability will enter the NDIS in coming years. There are growth opportunities for providers who respond to this new demand. Providers will be given the resources and tools to adjust [Read More…]

The first national approach to supporting children with developmental delay or disability

early childhood early intervention NDIS

The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) has marked the first nationally-consistent approach to supporting children with developmental delay or disability by the release of the National Disability Insurance Scheme’s (NDIS) Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) Approach. Under the ECEI approach, a child and their family will be referred to a specialist early childhood access partner [Read More…]

The enhancement process to the Better Access to Mental Health endorsement for OTs

Better access to mental health occupational therapy

After reviewing the processes for endorsement and ongoing participation in the Better Access to Mental Health (BAMH) scheme, the Board of Occupational Therapy Australia introduced changes in respect to the application for endorsement process. The aim of the processes, which have been introduced in December 2015, are as follows: To enhance the pathway into the [Read More…]

The role of psychologists in unlocking innovation potential

unlocking innovation potential

“Being behaviour change experts, psychologists are key to unlocking innovation in people and organisations.” That statement was made by Mike Kyrios, President of the Australian Psychological Society, in response to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s national innovation and science agenda announcement. Through the National Innovation and Science Agenda, the Government will invest $1.1 billion to incentivise [Read More…]

How to become a psychologist in Australia – by psychologist Dan Martin

Dan Martin

If you have decided that the way you want to be help people is by becoming a psychologist this is the article for you. There are several factors to keep in mind so that you follow the most direct path to becoming credentialed. Once you complete high school it will take you around 6-8 years [Read More…]

GradStats from the turn of the century…. What are health graduates getting paid? What’s the employment rate?

GradStats 2015

While starting salaries for new graduates from university health degrees have increased significantly since 1999, the percentage of graduates going directly into a full time job has dropped, according to GradStats data. Employment rate The GradStats figures show that there is now a lower full time employment rate for medicine, pharmacy, dentistry, nursing (initial), rehabilitation, [Read More…]

$250 million for translating medical research into real benefits

Biomedical Translation Fund

The Australian Government will invest $250 million over two years to help translate Australian health and medical research into commercial reality as part of the National Innovation and Science Agenda (NISA). This investment will provide the funds to improve the quality of life of Australians. The Biomedical Translation Fund alongside the Medical Research Future Fund [Read More…]

Disconnecting: Doing Online Business in a Balanced Way – by Dr Rebecca Ray

disconnecting in business

I started an online business primarily to contribute to the well-being of as many people as possible. Many more people than I could impact face-to-face in clinical practice. Secondary to my altruistic motivations is the lifestyle benefits of online business: The opportunity to work from anywhere with a WIFI connection, the luxury of working from [Read More…]

10 year road map for Closing the Gap

ten year road map to close the gap

Minister for Rural Health Fiona Nash has launched an Implementation Plan as a further commitment to Closing the Gap. The Implementation Plan is a ten-year road map: a strategy to better health for Indigenous children, Indigenous youth and Indigenous adults. The Coalition decided to adopt and build on the 10 year National Aboriginal and Torres Strait [Read More…]

The Top 5 Things I (Didn’t) Know about Online Business – by Dr Rebecca Ray, founder of Happi Habits

Happi Habits

I have spent the past eight months developing and writing a Positive Psychology-based program consisting of e-books and an online tracking system to measure well-being levels. The opportunity to help so many more people flourish than I could possibly do face-to-face has been my motivation every step of the way, but I wasn’t prepared for [Read More…]

What’s the difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist?

difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist

Psychologists and psychiatrists are two of the key experts in mental health care. Both psychiatrists and psychologists are trained to provide treatments for mental health problems, however, the type of treatments they deliver and diagnose methods they use are very different.   Training pathways – the difference for psychologists and psychiatrists The Royal Australian & [Read More…]

Private Practice Psychology: For the Love of It

why I love being a psychologist

“I love my job. Seriously. And this blog is so enjoyable to write because I get to spend it telling you all the reasons why I love being a psychologist! After discussing the costs of working as a psychologist in the last few blogs, talking about the good stuff is a great change of pace. [Read More…]

ATARs for every psychology course in Australia

ATAR for psychology

Click here for our most recent ATAR for psychology 2017 article. Click here for our ATAR for psychology 2016 article. For entry into a psychology course commencing in 2015, the ATAR ranged from 52.30 to 99.00 depending on the course and university. While most undergraduate psychology degrees are 3 years, the courses that include the [Read More…]

Private practice psychology: how to treat trauma without becoming traumatised – by Dr Rebecca Ray

treating trauma

In my humble opinion, helping people to live richer, fuller lives is such a privilege and incredibly rewarding. Sometimes, this is especially so when working with people who have experienced profound trauma. In my experience, sharing the therapeutic space with someone as they tell their story and process the impact it has had on them [Read More…]

Psychologists are human, too – burnout part 3 – by Dr Rebecca Ray

psychologist burnout

Part 3: Preventing and Managing Burnout In the past two blog posts we’ve looked at the serious topic of burnout in psychologists. It’s serious because there are many people out there that need our help, and if we don’t look after ourselves, then those people are not going to get the help they need and [Read More…]

A psychologist’s personal experience with burnout – and tips on identifying it in yourself – Q&A with Sam van Meurs

identifying burnout in health professionals

Q. What’s it’s like to be a psychologist experiencing burnout? A. Speaking personally, initially it was quite a struggle experiencing burnout as a psychologist, because somewhere implicit in my decision to practice psychology (made at a young, immature age) was the notion that because I was fortunate enough to be raised in a loving, caring, [Read More…]

Allied health misses a guernsey in the Medicare Benefits Schedule Review Taskforce – by Amanda Griffiths

Medicare Benefits Scheme Review Taskforce

It’s been about a month since Minister for Health Sussan Ley announced the members of the Federal Government’s Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) Review Taskforce and the Primary Health Care Advisory Group (PHCAG). Although the PHCAG is made up of members from a number of health professions including physiotherapy, medicine and pharmacy, it is blatantly obvious [Read More…]

#WhyWeDoResearch campaign – by Cheryl Prescott and Claire Gibbs

Claire Gibbs and Abby Greaves

“The #WhyWeDoResearch campaign was conceived and launched via Twitter by Claire Gibbs, Senior Clinical Research Nurse (@ClaireGibbsUK) and Abby Greaves, Research Administrator, (@JPUHResearch) at the James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in December 2014. Their intention was to use the hashtag #WhyWeDoResearch as a way to introduce core research team members to the public, [Read More…]

Psychologists are Human, Too – Burnout – Part 2 – by Dr Rebecca Ray

psychologist burn out

Part 2: Factors that Contribute to Burnout Burnout. It’s a serious subject when you’re in the business of helping everyone else deal with their challenges, but may then forget to consider your own needs. Following on from last month’s blog post on identifying burnout, I wonder have you noticed any of those signs in yourself? [Read More…]

Call for health professionals to be more aware of signs of child sexual abuse surfaces during royal commission

child sexual abuse in institutions royal commission

The ABC has again reported on the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. They recently published revelations by psychologist Terence Kirkpatrick that he was sexually abused by a psychologist at the Royal North Shore Hospital (RNSH) in 1967 when he had been referred to the clinic to be treated for what was [Read More…]

Psychologists are human too – let’s talk about burnout – by Dr Rebecca Ray

Rebecca Ray

Identifying Burnout This is the first blog post in a series of three that will focus on the human element of being a psychologist. There are inherent risks to one’s own mental and physical health when working in a profession where clients are psychologically (and often physically) unwell. Whether it be stress, burnout, compassion fatigue [Read More…]

Advertising health services is about so much more than the AHPRA guidelines

advertising laws for health professionals

Health practitioners need to be aware that their advertising must comply not just with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) guidelines where appropriate, but also with national law. Consumer Law The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is the authority who enforces the Competition and Consumer Act 2010. The Act covers areas including false [Read More…]

My rant following the most recent round of careers expos….

The dark side of career expos

I have just returned from a series of 4 careers expos in the New South Wales towns of Young, Forbes, Dubbo and Bathurst. Although this website was started especially for high school students considering a career in health and has lots of resources such as videos from real health practitioners and pathways information, there are [Read More…]

Would you spend 30 hours a month with older folk to get free accommodation during uni?

Live in aged care facility during uni

According to a report in The Journal in Ireland, a nursing home in Deventer in the Netherlands is opening its doors for uni students to live with the elderly as housemates. Why would any young free uni students wish to live with the pensioners instead of partying with fellow college roommates? The rent is free. [Read More…]

Accredited psychology courses in Australia

psychology courses in Australia

Australian Psychological Accreditation Council has published complete lists of currently accredited psychology courses in Australia based on states and territories: Australian Capital Territory New South Wales North Territory Queensland South Australia Tasmania Victoria Western Australia We have divided the courses into undergraduate and postgraduate program, as follows: Undergraduate 1. Australian Capital Territory Australian National University [Read More…]

The private practice psychologist – wearer of many hats – by Dr Rebecca Ray

Private practice psychology business

Do you know how many hats you’re comfortable wearing? This is an important question when you’re considering private practice as a psychologist. Already, you’ll wear multiple hats in the therapy room: Assessor Treatment provider Risk manager Emotional container Record keeper And so it goes on. If you are a psychologist in private practice, the hats [Read More…]

Polio Australia: Improving Health Outcome for Australia’s Polio Survivors

Polio Australia

Many thanks to Mary-ann Liethof, National Program Manager of Polio Australia for contributing this valuable information for health professionals. Acute Polio Australia experienced waves of polio epidemics throughout the 20th century. However, with the introduction of the Salk and Sabin vaccines, polio was an uncommon infection in Australia by the early 1960s. According to the [Read More…]

The career progression of a psychologist – Many Roads Lead to Rome – by Dr Rebecca Ray

Rebecca Ray

Even though nearly 40% of psychologists work in some form of private practice (Australia’s Health Workforce Series – Psychologists in Focus, 2014), that doesn’t mean that all of these psychologists are always in offices with muted tones seeing patients stretched out on couches (ok the muted tones might be close to the truth but the [Read More…]

4 adults including a clinical nurse, 1 teenager and a fur baby to walk 1850km Canning Stock Route to stop stigma around mental illness

One Step at a Time Canning Stock Route

When I came across this hard-core group of 5 walkers (and Milly the fur baby) plus a support team who are preparing to walk the 1850km Canning Stock Route and fund raise in May in the name of stopping the stigma around mental illness, I couldn’t help but share their story. It’s up close, personal [Read More…]

APS, RACP, RANZCP and RACGP call for children to be released from detention

children in detention

In recent days the Australian Psychological Society (APS), the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP), the Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) have all spoken out about the mental health of children held in detention. APS The APS President Professor Mike Kyrios stated [Read More…]

AHPRA to introduce further drug screening procedures for practitioners with substance related impairment

AHPRA drug testing for health practitioners

The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) will be introducing mandatory hair testing for all practitioners with a substance related impairment. Under the screening protocol, all health practitioners who have restrictions on their registration linked to previous substance abuse will have routine hair testing in addition to the urine drug screening as per the interim [Read More…]

Private Practice Psychology: So Many Benefits – by Rebecca Ray

Benefits of private practice psychology 1

It’s no accident that the majority of the 32,000 psychologists registered in Australia (Australian Practitioner Health Regulation Agency, 2014) work in some form of private practice. Over 37% of psychologists enjoy the benefits of private practice psychology – on their own, in a group, in a GP clinic or some other form (Health Workforce Australia: [Read More…]

Upskilling online made possible by Monash University

Monash Online courses for health professionals

The health industry is incredibly rewarding yet can be a mentally draining area to work in. Take it from Natasha Jennings of the Alfred Hospital’s Emergency and Trauma Centre, who shared her typical day online at Health Victoria. Her exhausting day begins at 5am and she is seeing patients as soon as she steps into [Read More…]

Feedback for 4+2 internship program for psychologists

psychology internship pathway consultation 2015

The Psychology Board of Australia is seeking feedback about the provisional registration standard and the guidelines for the 4+2 internship program for psychologists. Submissions close on 27th February 2015. The community and practitioners are invited to give input on the requirements for developing the knowledge, skills and competence required for entry into general registration via [Read More…]

The influence of Omega-3 on postnatal depression – by Melanie McGrice, AvdAPD

Melanie McGrice Headshot

My Health Career is pleased to publish an article by dietitian Melanie McGrice where she discusses omega-3 fatty acids, their role in post-natal depression and what you can do to make sure you and your patients are getting enough. “For most women, having a baby is the most significant life changing event they will ever [Read More…]

Private practice psychology – 10 indicators to help you decide if you should take the leap – by Rebecca Ray

private practice psychology 1

So you’ve studied for years to get registered as a Psychologist and private practice seems like a good option, hey? It’s a popular choice for psychologists for many reasons. As of 2014, the Australian Practitioner Health Regulation Agency reports that 32,000 psychologists are registered around the country. These psychologists work across a large range of [Read More…]

What do patients think about digital health? By Cathie Reid – Digital Health Summit post 4

technology in health

This is the fourth and final post in my series from the Digital Health Summit at CES 2015, following on from posts on wearables, disrupting the doctor visit, and how pharmacy can avoid its own Kodak moment. It was fantastic to see the program include a session on the patient perspective, as all too often [Read More…]

The Voices in Eleanor Longden’s Head

schizophrenic goes on to work with intervoice

For Eleanor Longden, the voices in her head started when she was in her first year as an undergraduate student at university. After a referral to a psychiatrist and a diagnosis of schizophrenia, there were many hospital admissions and a sense of hopelessness, humiliation and despair. She was drugged, discarded, and even been told that [Read More…]

National Psychology Week again focused on what’s stressing Australians

National Psychology Week 2014

National Psychology Week was once again held in November, and again Australians were encouraged to “think well, be well.” The focus for the awareness campaign in 2014 was helping Australians to manage stress and increase their wellbeing, and also to recognise when professional help is required. To find out what is stressing out the nation, [Read More…]

It pays to become a psychologically healthy workplace.

psychologically healthy workplace

The Psychologically Healthy Workplace Program (PHWP) is an evidence-based initiative developed by The Australian Psychological Society (APS). The program aims to promote psychological health and wellbeing in Australian workplaces. The program is backed by research from PricewaterhouseCoopers which shows that businesses implementing successful mental health strategies will more than double their outlay, with each $1.00 [Read More…]

GPs provide over 4 times more MBS subsidised mental health services than psychologists

mental health GP and psychologist statistics

According to information from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), psychologists in Australia provided more than 3.7 million MBS-subsidised mental health services to almost 806,000 patients in 2012-13 and psychiatrists provided about 2.1 million MBS-subsidised services to almost 323,000 patients. It is estimated that there were 15.8 million GP encounters that were mental-health [Read More…]

Why a lack of professionalism in psychology students can then affect their practice – and what to do about it!

professionalism in psychology students

Psychology students who show no respect to the confidentiality of personal information shared in the classroom and responsibility towards homework and assignments are likely to have problems in professional practice upon graduation. If this poor attitude persists, it will not only affect their professional career, but also harm the future clients.   A study, published [Read More…]

The undergraduate psychology degree – overrated or misunderstood?

undergraduate psychology degree

With media outlets such as quoting McCrindle Research as finding that psychology is Australia’s most overrated degree, My Health Career thought we would look at if it is truly overrated or if it is simply misunderstood. Employment rate The McCrindle Research highlights the fact that undergraduate psychology is one of Australia’s most popular courses. [Read More…]

Australian HealthFusion Team Challenge 2014….. and the winners are….

Team UQ

A couple of months ago I was asked to be the Master of Ceremonies at the Australian HealthFusion Team Challenge. Being offered such a great opportunity is a bit of a privilege, and although I was keen to take part in the day, I was also a bit daunted as it is such a full [Read More…]

Reminder about Therapy Choices for the NDIS

Therapy Choices

In 2013 Occupational Therapy Australia entered into a partnership with the Australian Government to produce Therapy Choices, a website which aims to help people with a disability to better understand the roles of the allied health professionals who are able to provide them support under the National Disability Insurance Scheme. The website lists the roles [Read More…]

Online conduct for psychologists – staying out of trouble!

Psychologists online

The Australian Psychological Society has published a set of guidelines for psychologists to keep in mind in relation to competent and ethical practice. It is regarding the possibility for issues to arise when using forms of communication such as email and social media: •    Email communications: All emails that you send to your clients must [Read More…]

headspace – why are young people presenting for mental health care?

youth mental health Australia

headspace is Australia’s national youth mental health foundation. It provides young Australians aged 12-25 with mental health, general health, education, employment, and alcohol and drug services. It is expected that there will be 90 headspace centres throughout Australia by 2015. A recent article in the Medical Journal of Australia provided statistics about 21,274 headspace clients [Read More…]

How will the federal budget affect health professions?

federal health budget 2014-2015

The federal government handed down its 2014-2015 budget on Tuesday 13th May 2014. Click here for the expense measures for health. The government intends for budget savings from health to be diverted to the Medical Research Future Fund to help keep Australia at the forefront of the medical research sector. The budget has not been [Read More…]

Health Fusion Team Challenge registration open to uni students

Health industry report

University students studying a health degree in an Australian university are now able to register a team for the 2014 HealthFusion Team Challenge (HFTC). The HFTC is an award winning program aimed at educating students from different disciplines in the area of collaborative patient care. There are 4 basic steps to being involved in the [Read More…]

Psychology workforce data released

Psychology workforce

Psychologists in Focus has been released by Health Workforce Australia, as part of its Australia’s Health Workforce Series. In the section covering stakeholder views, the Australian Psychological Society (APS) confirmed that the demand for masters programs (which are now a prerequisite for an area of endorsement of registration) enormously exceeds the places available. The APS [Read More…]

Advertising guidelines for health professionals changed… just waiting on official AHPRA documentation

AHPRA Action

AHPRA Action, a campaign led by Melbourne surgeon Dr Jill Tomlinson, to have the Guidelines for Advertising Regulated Health Services changed, has had some success, but is still looking for the guidelines document to be changed. The part of the guidelines in question is in section 6.2.3, where it states that: A practitioner must take [Read More…]

Chill out, cool down … athlete anxiety at the Winter Games – by Lisa Martin

Sport psychology

The following article was originally published by The Conversation. You can click on the link to read the original article by Lisa Martin from the University of the Sunshine Coast co-authored with Caron Jander, a consultant occupational physician affiliated with the Australian Paralympic Swim Team. Lisa Martin is affiliated with Swimming Australia and is the psychologist [Read More…]

Want to fly to the Northern Territory to inspire the next generation of health practitioners?

NT Rural High School Visits

The Northern Territory Medicare Local is now taking applications for university health students to fly to the Northern Territory to connect with high school students to promote health careers. Participating uni students will have the opportunity to present workshops to high school students to demonstrate the challenges and rewards of health careers, and also share [Read More…]

Mental health workforce reform – peer workers

Mental Health Reform

Health Workforce Australia is working towards a national approach for a skilled and sustainable mental health workforce, as demand for mental health services is increasing. Health Workforce Australia held a consultation workshop at the recent Mental Health Services Summer Forum in Sydney on the 19th February. The workshop was Expanding The Use of Mental Health [Read More…]

Over 50% of permanent aged care residents have depression

Depression in aged care facilities

The role of psychology in residential aged care in Australia is very important. A report produced by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare states that depression symptoms are prevalent among residents of permanent aged care. The report entitled “Depression in Residential Aged Care” was conducted between 2008 and 2012. It reflects that more than [Read More…]

Peer Pressure – Not So Bad After All?

peer pressure psychology

Teenagers are known to be risk-takers. With their peers surrounding them, teens can take on any challenge especially if it yields a more favorable response from their friends and classmates. After significant studies done with the teenagers of today, peer pressure is given an entirely different meaning. A report published in Current Directions in Psychological [Read More…]

The fear of memory loss – how can psychologists help?

dementia psychologist

My Health Career is pleased to publish a guest blog post by registered psychologist Julie Bajic. Julie is the Managing Director of Wise Care, a team of psychologists who have particular expertise in working with older adults. “This week is Dementia Awareness Week, which coincides with World Alzheimer’s Day this Saturday 21 September 2013. This [Read More…]

Enhancing and Expanding Psychology for Indigenous Australians

Aboriginal psychology student increase

According to Professor Pat Dudgeon, an Aboriginal, Fellow of the Australian Psychology Society and academic from the University of Western Australia, there are insufficient numbers of Indigenous psychologists in Australia. She says that non-indigenous practitioners are currently providing services to indigenous Australians, even though cultural awareness is not a standard competency in undergraduate or post-university [Read More…]

Mentally ill Australians have shorter life expectancy

Mentall illness and life expectancy

The University of Queensland and the University of Western Australia have recently conducted a study on mentally ill patients in Australia and their life expectancy. The results showed that those who were diagnosed with conditions that include alcohol and drug disorders, schizophrenia, neurotic disorders, stress or adjustment reactions, depressive disorders, psychoses, and other mental illnesses, [Read More…]

Pathways to becoming a registered psychologist

Becoming a psychologist

It takes a minimum of six years of education and training to obtain general registration as a psychologist in Australia. The Psychology Board of Australia (PsyBA) determines the requirements for registration as a psychologist under the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme. The Australian Psychology Accreditation Council accredits courses that meet the requirements. An overview of [Read More…]

Personal stories from psychologists

Psychology career

The Australian Psychological Society’s (APS) website has a careers section. It includes an overview of why a number of leading Australian psychologists chose to study psychology, and how they find their career to be personally rewarding:   Okay, so let’s list the areas of psychology mentioned on the APS website…. Academic, biological, child, adolescent & [Read More…]

An introduction to psychology from Yale University

Introduction to psychology

It is quite a treat when you get an opportunity to see what it’s like to be a psychology student. Even more of a treat when you get access to a FREE online course from Yale University called ‘Introduction to Psychology’. A word of warning – this is not for the faint-hearted. It’s a series [Read More…]

How I recovered from mental illness

Psychology - Karen Tyrrell

We are extremely excited to have a psychology guest post from a patient’s perspective. Karen Tyrrell is an Australian multi-genre author, mental health advocate, workshop presenter and accredited speaker with SANE Australia. Karen taught as a primary school teacher, specializing in Gifted and Talented classes. Parents of one of Karen’s students repeatedly harassed her to [Read More…]

Let’s Talk About Stress

Psych - Nat Psych Week other

The results of the national ‘Stress and Welbeing in Australia’ survey have been released by the Australian Psychological Society (APS) just in time for National Psychology Week. The APS have also released a tip sheet called ‘Understanding and Managing Stress’ to help Australians to ‘think well and be well’. The APS states that stress is [Read More…]

Anger Management

Psychology anger management

And you thought we were talking about Charlie Sheen’s new show, didn’t you?!?!?! Well, um, actually, we’re not sure because we haven’t watched an episode yet, so we don’t really know what happens. BUT we do know that we are talking about the topic of anger management…. as in.. you know, psychology stuff….. and about [Read More…]

Psychology…… more than you think……

pic 1

When many people think about what a psychologist does, an image springs to mind where the patient is lying on a couch talking to the psychologist about all their problems. Yes, this is one area of psychology, but, psychology is… well…… more than you think!! There are lots of areas of specialization within psychology, and [Read More…]