Q1. What is your occupation?

Q2. Has the Better Access initiative affected access to clinical training in your discipline?

Q2a. If yes, has it improved access or made it more difficult?

Q3. Do you work in a private practice or in both private and public practice?

Q4. How long have you been in private practice?

Q5. On average, how many hours per week do you work in private practice?

Q6. Since 1 January 2009, how many clients have been referred to you by GPs/ psychiatrists/paediatricians through the Better Access initiative?

Q7. Since 1 January 2009, please estimate the average waiting time for patients to see you who have been referred to you by GPs/psychiatrists/paediatricians through the Better Access initiative?

Q8. Since 1 January 2009, on average how would you rate the information provided to you in the GP Mental Health Care Plan from the referring GP?

Q9. Have you had clients referred to you through the Better Access Initiative that were not appropriate referrals?

Q9a. What percentage of the clients referred to you were not appropriate referrals?

Q9b. What was the main reason these referrals were not appropriate?

Q10. Of those patients referred to you through the Better Access initiative since 1 January 2009, please estimate the percentage who are receiving treatment for their mental disorders for the first time?

Q11. Of those patients referred to you through the Better Access initiative since 1 January 2009, please estimate, the percentage who are receiving treatment for their mental disorders who are from culturally or linguistically diverse backgrounds?
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Q1. What is your occupation?

Only one occupational therapist responded to the online survey and two respondents did not provide their occupation.

Sixty three percent of total responses were from psychologists, with approximately equal numbers from clinical psychologists and general psychologists. Social workers comprised 35 per cent of total responses.
RespondentsPer cent
Clinical Psychologist
131
31%
Occupational Therapist
1
0%
Psychologist
133
32%
Social Worker
153
36%
(blank)
2
0%
Grand total
420
100%

Q2. Has the Better Access initiative affected access to clinical training in your discipline?

Most respondents (64 per cent) reported that they did not think the Better Access Initiative had improved access to clinical training. Only one third of respondents believed that clinical training had been affected.
RespondentsPer cent
No
268
64%
Yes
143
34%
(blank)
9
2%
Grand total
420
100%

Q2a. Has the Better Access initiative affected access to clinical training in your discipline? If yes, has it improved access or made it more difficult?

Of those respondents who believed that clinical training had been affected, 67 per cent reported that it had improved access while 27 per cent reported that it had made access more difficult.
RespondentsPer cent
Improved access
96
67%
Made it more difficult
38
27%
(blank)
9
6%
Grand total
143
100%
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Q3. Do you work in a private practice or in both private and public practice?

Approximately two thirds of the respondents worked in private practice only, with about one third working in both public and private sectors.
RespondentsPer cent
Both public and private
139
33%
Private
277
66%
(blank)
4
1%
Grand total
420
100%

Q4. How long have you been in private practice?

Approximately half (49 per cent) of respondents had been in private practice six or more years. Those with less experience in private practice (five years or less) were more likely to work in both public and private sectors (60 per cent of respondents work in public and private practice) than in the private sector alone (44 per cent of respondents work in only the private sector).
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
Less than 2 years
43
16%
42
30%
85
20%
2 to 5 years
77
28%
42
30%
119
29%
6 to 10 years
51
18%
18
13%
69
17%
11 to 20 years
69
25%
25
18%
94
23%
21 years and over
31
11%
6
4%
37
9%
(blank)
6
2%
6
4%
12
3%
Total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%

Q5. On average, how many hours per week do you work in private practice?

Approximately one third of respondents reported working 15 hours or less per week and one third reported working between 15 and 30 hours per week in private practice. Twenty two per cent of respondents reported working 31-45 hours per week and seven per cent worked more than 46 hours per week in private practice.

Of the respondents who worked in both public and private sectors, the majority (62 per cent) worked 15 hours or less per week in private practice, while 27 per cent worked 16-30 hours per week. Of those who worked in private practice only, the spread was somewhat more even, with 19 per cent working 15 hours or less, 37 per cent working 16-30 hours per week and 30 per cent working 31-45 hours per week.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
1 to 15 hours per week
53
19%
86
62%
139
33%
16 to 30 hours per week
103
37%
37
27%
140
34%
31 to 45 hours per week
84
30%
8
6%
92
22%
46 hours per week
30
11%
1
1%
31
7%
(blank)
7
3%
7
5%
14
3%
Grand total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%
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Q6. Since 1 January 2009, how many clients have been referred to you by GPs/ psychiatrists/paediatricians through the Better Access initiative?

Since 1 January 2009, nearly half (44 per cent) of respondents reported 20 or fewer patients referred to them by GPs, psychiatrists or paediatricians through the Better Access Initiative and 50 per cent reported receiving 21 or more referrals.

Of those respondents working solely in private practice, 61 per cent reported receiving 21 or more referrals and 29 per cent reported receiving 51 or more referrals. Respondents working in public and private practice received fewer referrals, with 29 per cent reporting that they received 21 or more referrals and only six per cent reporting that they received 51 or more referrals.

An examination of referrals by provider type found that clinical psychologists received 30 per cent more referrals from GPs than did psychologists and 60 per cent more than social workers.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
1 to 10 patients
37
13%
45
32%
82
20%
11 to 20 patients
58
21%
43
31%
101
24%
21 to 50 patients
90
32%
32
23%
122
29%
51 to 100 patients
58
21%
9
6%
67
16%
101 patients
22
8%
22
5%
(blank)
12
4%
10
7%
22
5%
Total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%

Q7. Since 1 January 2009, please estimate the average waiting time for patients to see you who have been referred to you by GPs/psychiatrists/paediatricians through the Better Access initiative?

Overall, 73 per cent of respondents reported an average waiting time of 14 days or less. Respondents working in both public and private practice reported shorter waiting times than respondents working solely in private practice. Fifty per cent of respondents in public and private practice reported waiting times of seven days or less, and 79 per cent reported waiting times of 14 days or less.

Practitioners working in private practice reported slightly longer waiting times for clients referred through the Better Access Initiative, with only 33 per cent of practitioners having waiting times of seven days or less and 71 per cent reported waiting times of 14 days or less. Eighteen per cent reported waiting times of 15-28 days and six per cent with waiting times in excess of 29 days.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
7 days or less
91
33%
69
50%
160
38%
8 to 14 days
106
38%
41
29%
147
35%
15 to 28 days
49
18%
15
11%
64
15%
29 to 42 days
15
5%
4
3%
19
5%
More than 42 days
3
1%
3
1%
(blank)
13
5%
10
7%
23
6%
Total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%
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Q8. Since 1 January 2009, on average how would you rate the information provided to you in the GP Mental Health Care Plan from the referring GP?

Overall, the majority (73 per cent) of respondents reported the information provided in the GP Mental Health Care Plan as good (33 per cent) or fair (40 per cent). Five per cent rated the information provided as very good, while twenty seven per cent rated the information provided as poor (13 per cent) or very poor (four per cent).

There were only slight differences in the views held by respondents working solely in private practice and those working in both public and private practice.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
Very good
16
6%
4
3%
20
5%
Good
90
32%
49
35%
139
33%
Fair
116
42%
50
36%
166
40%
Poor
32
12%
22
16%
54
13%
Very poor
11
4%
4
3%
15
4%
(blank)
12
4%
10
7%
22
5%
Total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%

Q9. Since 1 January 2009, have you had clients referred to you through the Better Access Initiative that were not appropriate referrals?

The majority (72 per cent) of respondents reported that they had not received inappropriate referrals. There was very little difference between the perceptions of respondents working solely in private practice and those working in both public and private practice.

Twenty two per cent of respondents reported receiving referrals through the Better Access Initiative that were not appropriate, and seven percent reported that they were unsure whether they had received referrals that were not appropriate.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
No
200
72%
101
73%
301
72%
Yes
61
22%
26
19%
87
21%
(blank)
16
6%
12
9%
28
7%
Total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%

Q9a. Since 1 January 2009, what percentage of the clients referred to you were not appropriate referrals?

Of those practitioners who reported receiving referrals that were not appropriate, 74% of respondents reported that these comprised five per cent or less than the total clients referred. A small number of respondents (six respondents, or 1.5 per cent of all respondents to the survey) reported that 20 per cent or more referrals were not appropriate.

There were only small differences in the perceptions reported by respondents working solely in private practice and those working in both public and private practice.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
5% or less
46
75%
18
69%
64
74%
Between 6 to 20%
11
18%
6
23%
17
19%
Greater than 20%
4
7%
2
8%
6
7%
Total
61
100%
26
100%
87
100%
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Q9b. What was the main reason these referrals were not appropriate?

Of those who reported inappropriate referrals, the most common reason (38 per cent) was that the referrals were not for a disorder eligible for treatment through the Better Access initiative. Smaller, more equal proportions of respondents reported that the referrals were inappropriate because they were not appropriate to the range of services they provided (18 per cent) or an equal combination of the disorder not being eligible and the referral not being appropriate to their particular range of services (23 per cent).

Of those practitioners who reported receiving referrals that were not appropriate, 74% of respondents reported that these comprised five per cent or less than the total clients referred. A small number of respondents (six respondents, or 1.5 per cent of all respondents to the survey) reported that 20 per cent or more referrals were not appropriate. There was little difference in the perceptions reported by respondents working solely in private practice and those working in both public and private practice.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
Referrals did not have a disorder eligible for treatment through Better Access
24
39%
9
35%
33
38%
Referrals were not appropriate to the range of services that I provide
13
21%
3
12%
16
18%
Roughly equal combination of the above
13
21%
7
27%
20
23%
Other
11
18%
7
27%
18
21%
Total
61
100%
26
100%
87
100%

Q10. Of those patients referred to you through the Better Access initiative since 1 January 2009, please estimate the percentage who are receiving treatment for their mental disorders for the first time?

Approximately half of respondents reported that more than 61 per cent of referrals were receiving treatment for their mental disorder for the first time, and 18 per cent reported that more than 81 per cent of their referrals were receiving treatment for the first time.

There was little difference in the perceptions reported by respondents working solely in private practice and those working in both public and private practice.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
0 to 20 %
21
8%
17
12%
38
9%
21 to 40%
31
11%
18
13%
49
12%
41to 60%
70
25%
29
21%
99
24%
61 to 80%
92
33%
38
27%
130
31%
81 to 100%
47
17%
27
19%
74
18%
(blank)
16
6%
10
7%
26
6%
Total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%
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Q11. Of those patients referred to you through the Better Access initiative since 1 January 2009, please estimate the percentage who are receiving treatment for their mental disorders who are from culturally or linguistically diverse backgrounds?

Seventy per cent of respondents reported that fewer than 20 per cent of their clients referred through the Better Access initiative were from culturally or linguistically diverse backgrounds. A smaller proportion (17 per cent) reported between 21 and 40 per cent were from culturally or linguistically diverse backgrounds and eight per cent reported that more than 40 per cent of referrals were from culturally or linguistically diverse backgrounds. There was little difference in the perceptions reported by respondents working solely in private practice and those working in both public and private practice.
Private practice
Respondents
Private practice
Per cent
Both public and private
Respondents
Both public and private
Per cent
All respondentsAll respondents
Per cent
0 to 20 %
199
72%
92
66%
291
70%
21to 40%
44
16%
26
19%
70
17%
41 to 60%
10
4%
7
5%
17
4%
61 to 80%
6
2%
2
1%
8
2%
81 to 100%
5
2%
3
2%
8
2%
(blank)
13
5%
9
6%
22
5%
Grand total
277
100%
139
100%
416
100%