Counselling Services

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Do you need help in these areas?


Life issues or skills...  Planning & transitions...  Mental health concerns...  Carer concerns...  Trauma/crisis...  just to name a few!


A SchemeWise Counsellor may be able to help ... if you answered YES to any of the above!

Life is about learning.  Life is about growing.  But sometimes its hard to do either if you don’t know what to look for, how to start, or even what questions to ask?  This is where counselling can help.

Our counsellors have many years of professional experience helping people navigate and find the answers to these questions in their own life context.  Counselling is a person-centred service available to NDIS participant's, their carer(s) and family.  It is a capacity-building, capacity-enhancing and skills-building therapeutic service.  Much of what it seeks to do is support, enhance and/or develop the 'inner' you.

Counselling is the central way most people access a therapeutic service to therfore do 'self' work.  Work focused on their needs, their experiences, and helping each and every individual develop the personal capacity they need in their personal circumstances, and assisting them to move to the next level of their lives.

SchemeWise Counsellors can help with:

     - Relationships - personal, family and friends

     - Resolving conflict – personal and interpersonal (at home, work or other setting)

     - Mental health – such as with depression, anxiety, OCD, panic, psychosis (hearing voices)

     - Neurological conditions like autism (children 10 and up), brain injury, MS, Parkinson's, Stroke, etc

     - Life Transitions - such as school, home, or work, moving house, moving out & being independent, or others

     - Worries, problems, or issues affecting your peace of mind – like addictions, personal issues, safety

     - Trauma (all kinds) - past and present

     - Behavioural issues & management plans – adolescents and above

     - Social skills & learning about different perspectives and/or getting along with others

     - Life-skills coaching (budgeting, paying bills, help with housing, etc) & personal resilience

     - Grief and grieving (past and present)

     - Coaching & self-improvement (changing habits, finance & budgets, goals, etc)

      - Goal-setting and reviewing current goals (especially important around review times!)

     - Gaining personal insight into your life.

Our counsellors can also assist with planning and memory issues (especially common after acquired disability from stroke or brain injury and other head trauma) helping you develop a system that supports the areas you have problems with.  This can be an effective way of increasing your day-to-day functioning, improving your capacity to live independently, and more importantly give you a sense that things are achievable again and not as confusing as they used to be.  As little as 3-6 sessions can help in these circumstances (see price table below).

We come to you

Yep - that's right... SchemeWise Counsellor's travel to you.  

Our Counsellor's know that it can be hard when people have mobility or other issues which make it difficult to leave home or access therapy services.  Or sometimes life is just too busy or caring responsibilities mean it can be hard to find the time.  Why not take this worry away and let us travel to meet you.

The NDIS now includes provision for therapy travel.  In line with NDIS rates, SchemeWise Counsellor's will include cost of travel up to a maximum travel time of 20 minutes; travel is free after that (in MMM1-3 areas).  In rural areas (known as MMM4-5) the NDIS allows up to 45minutes for travel time.  Generally travel is charged in one direction only (except if you are the last customer in a counsellor's day).

SchemeWise counsellor's can meet you at your home (if it is safe to do so), somewhere in the community (like a coffee shop or park) or can come to an alternative place like a hospital, day centre, school, workplace, etc.  Whatever works for you!

How do you know if you can use counselling under an NDIS plan?

To access counselling under an NDIS plan the item 'Improved Daily Living' and sometimes 'Improved Health and Wellbeing' must be included in your plan. 

Under your NDIS plan's 'Improved Daily Living' item the NDIS commonly uses words like 'funds to access an allied health professional' - this includes a counsellor - this funding is generally flexible meaning you can use it to access those therapeutic services you think are best for you, at the amount you want.   You could therefore use a bit, some, half or all for counselling if you think this would be of benefit to you - it's your choice!  

For assistance with planning and goal-setting for life transitions - apart from the above your counsellor can help you if you also have 'Improved Living Arrangements' and need help in this area, or Social and Community Participation' if these are specific areas you need to focus on.

If you have 'Improved relationships' funding the NDIS might state that funds are provided for behaviour intervention and management or strategies - if so our counsellors have experience in this area too (please note: this is different to 'Specialist Behaviour Support' - see below).

Under your plan's 'Health and Wellbeing' item the NDIS will usually specify the exact type of service you have been approved to access - in this case counselling must be specifically mentioned.

Getting Started

So with all that in mind.... the only other thing you need to know is that when you are ready... SchemeWise Counsellor's will organise an initial 20-30 minute consultation - at no cost - after which if you would like to keep seeing one of our counsellors you simply need to complete a service agreement and provide us details of where to send invoices. SchemeWise will need some personal information from you for the service agreement - like you NDIS number,plan dates, home address, etc.

At your initial meeting a SchemeWise Counsellor will ask about your endeavours for counselling (what you need help with) and can offer some general guidance on how many sessions for different issues, may be required.  At this initial meeting the SchemeWise counsellor will also tell you about the cost of obtaining a counselling service - SchemeWise only charges the applicable NDIS rate.

Your initial consultation, called a ‘getting to know each other session,’ will be general in nature AND IS FREE OF CHARGE.

The purpose of this session is NOT to provide a therapeutic support but rather for the SchemeWise Counsellor and you to talk and see if you ‘gel’ and will be able to work together in the future.  Just like our Counsellor will get to know you, you will get to know them.  If the initial meeting is OK… then and only then… will you be asked whether you would like to make a booking.  This is our guarantee and as a way to demonstrate to you that we are deserving of your trust, time and effort.


Its important to also think about how long you need a counselling service AND what the cost will be.  To assist you our indicative pricing table below can help.  One thing to keep in mind is that while you may have something in mind... your SchemeWise counsellor may advice something slightly different based on their experience addressing similar issues.  Please take this advice as it helps set realistic goals for counselling and relevant timescales to achieve your intended outcome.  SchemeWise counsellors are ALL professional allied-health practitioners; registered to practice and overseen by a relevant professional body.

  • Single session - Budget or goals planning
  • 45 minute session
  • 15 minutes notes
  • Private and confidential
  • We travel to you!
  • 3 counselling sessions + 1-page letter for NDIS
  • 45mins / session
  • 15min notes / session
  • Private and confidential
  • We travel to you!
  • ~6 counselling sessions + 3hrs for NDIS report
  • 45mins / session
  • 15mins notes / session
  • Private and confidential
  • We travel to you!
  • ~12 counselling sessions + 4hrs NDIS report
  • 45mins / session
  • 15min notes / session
  • Private and confidential
  • We travel to you!

Table note: These are indicative prices as at March 2019.  The intent of the pricing is to show the maximum cost to an individual based on a standard counselling session PLUS 40 minutes of therapist travel (this can occur if you are the last client in a therapist's day as allowed by NDIS rules) and the essential features at certain costs levels - including a letter or report and the number of standard sessions.  Sessions are ALL 45 minutes direct face-to-face time PLUS 15 minutes notes (often called an in-direct service).  Therapists are required to keep case notes by law.  Sessions with longer times may affect the pricing indicated above.

In providing the maximum cost within a range SchemeWise intent is to ensure people or support coordinator's and plan manager's (or others) can adequately consider or advise on the indicative and likely estimated funding requirement under an NDIS plan.


Need a quote?

SchemeWise can also provide counselling quotes for NDIS plan review processes - just get in contact with us HERE and we can get things sorted.  SchemeWise quotes are always obligation free... although you may need to meet with one of our counsellor's (30 minutes - $100 charge if not already a SchemeWise customer) so that we understand what your needs are and can advise on the therapy service and against the outcomes you are seeking.

Behaviour Management

A SchemeWise counsellor can also help if you you need some behaviour management, support, or strategies developed to assist the people who help and care for you.  Or where you need this for your living situation such as supported independent living (SIL) or supported disability accommodation (SDA) placement. This kind of support is often about managing a single issue for which you need assistance - like an anxiety disorder where you need the help of family or support workers to help you in your daily activities.

PLEASE NOTE: aSchemeWise DOES NOT provide 'Specialist' or 'Positive Behaviour Management Support' at this time.  This kind of service often including the words Level 1, 2 or 3 package in your plan.  For these services you need to access a specialist NDIS registered provider as additional rules apply to these services.  Specialist services are generally reserved for where there is, or is likely to be, a restictive practice involved (or minimising same) and/or behaviours place a participant or others at substantive risk and potential for harm.  This specialist service is usually used where complex conditions (more than one underlying cause) may be invovled.  For example, this response could involve a person living with autism whom also has severe anxiety and often hurts themselves or others too. 

Crisis Counselling

Where a serious issue, event, or circumstance has resulted in a participant suffering a crisis response SchemeWise can assist as well.  We provide multi-discplinary de-escalation services to participant's, family members and/or support workers.  For participant's we can provide crisis and trauma-informed counselling therapy which uses several counselling approches.

SchemeWise de-escalation service

This service is specifically designed to address and reduce acute stress responses and help get care capacity back on track.  It can be used at home, in a centre or SIL or SDA setting.  It is more ideally focused on a person's support netowrk (services/supports) than a person living with disability.  It is best practice that 2 multi-disciplinary allied-health profesisonals conduct such sessissions.  Usually this service requires 1-3 sessions plus 3 hours for report & recommendations. 

This service can be drawn from a participant's plan, or alternatively paid under SIL/SDA irregular supports (if available or drawn from corporate funds) or where there is a permission drawn from a aprticipant's core funds as a means to address the crisis and get things back on track.  When you talk with us we can advise on the best option and we can provide an obligation free quote for this purpose too.

Participant complex crisis/trauma

Our counsellors have deep experience in addressing long term trauma issues and crisis situations. 

If a particpant has been harmed in a way that signficantly escalates their responses to a traumatising event (and subsequent every day funcitoning) - SchemeWise counsellors can assist.  Reducing acute or chronic distress, skills building and diverting PTSD-like reactions are key components of complex therapy assistance and must be implemented in a timely manner.  If a crisis has resulted in chronic complex tauma responses it can take a long time to address and exstinguish.  Long-term trauma cannot be placed into the pricing guide above in terms of limited duration. 

Instead SchemeWise suggests planning around 10- 12 sessions fro chronic long-term trauma's then seeking a report and updated advice on the future need to adequately resolve these issues.  By doing it this way, a person and/or their supports can plan the intial expenditure under an NDIS plan then consider whether there is scope for additional treatment now (using any further plan funds) OR if they need to consider more therapy via either a planned or unplanned NDIS review process.  It is normal in complex long-lived circumstances that anywhere from 6 months to 18 months regular therapy may be required.  For others, where signficant psychosocial injury has also resulted, therapy may be needed even longer.

SchemeWise can help you get started

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Counsellors can do most of the things a psychologist can do around therapy-based interventions AND at lower cost under an NDIS plan. Even if you have considered using a psychologist you may find counselling a great alternative and with a better chance of more regularity of sessions (like weekly or fortnightly compared to psychology which is often available only monthly).  For this reason, a regular counselling service can help you achieve outcomes faster!

Counsellors ARE NOT trained to diagnose and/or assess a condition(s) under professional health tools like DSM-V (e.g. autism or a mental health condition) or other specialist instruments and cannot provide medications.  Counsellors cannot undertake tests to do with intelligence or assessing learning disabilities either.  SchemeWise counsellors WILL however make use of generalist clinical or other counselling tools to track progress in a qualitative or quantitative fashion (as required) and to help show benefit from therapy sessions (e.g. depression, anxiety and stress scales amoung others).

Counselling is available as either an individual or group service.  Group services require a minimum of three (3) people (do not have to all be NDIS participants - e.g. could be 2 participants and a parent in a family unit).  Split pricing is provided in the NDIS pricing guide for group sessions based on 3 attendees (being equivalent to the cost of one individual).  Group sessions also require setting boundaries and rules that everyone agrees too.  For this reason, while the pricing above can help think about the overall cost of group counselling an addiitonal 1-2 sessions is required for the rules to be set and this cost is additive to the advised rates above.  SchemeWise therefore advises seeking a quote if unsure of the effect of using a group counselling option under a participant's NDIS plan.

A group counselling session can also be run for things like goal-setting or goal planning - as long as there are three (3) participants.  This is something that support coordiantors may like to think about, in particular, across their customers to ensure that planning activites are helpfully addressed.  This can also be another way to assist participant's if support coordiantion funds are running low and there are other capacity building funds which could be drawn upon to best position a participant for their NDIS annual review.

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