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Frequently Asked Questions

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General Questions

There are three reasons for this.
  1. The assessments we provide at Rheumi Occupational Therapy are something that you won’t get anywhere else. Your average OT isn’t going to assess your hypermobility and the impact on your life in the same way as we do. We provide a thorough assessment and report full of recommendations specific to your hypermobility condition.
  2. We want as many people as possible to be able to access our big picture assessment process to help them on their way to managing their condition. The “therapy” parts can often be provided by other therapists and we can make recommendations for the types of therapies you may need in our assessment. We do often a limited number of follow up appointments if clarification is needed post-assessment, however, we do not aim to provide the ongoing therapy.
  3. A lof the education that we used to provide in follow up sessions will soon be available via our online courses, and occasional face to face workshops. This frees up Rheumi Occupational Therapists to see more people for their big picture sessions and get them on their way to living a better life with their condition.
Assessments do cost a lot of money. You’re not wrong there. However, there is reasoning as to why!
My usual hourly rate for Occupational Therapy Client Services is based on that of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS Australia), however, I have chosen to make my hourly rate $15 below that of the NDIS (and many of my peers).

 

Assessments take time. A face to face assessment usually takes 2 hours, and then a report can take anywhere between 1 and 3 hours, depending on the amount of research and detail required. I have chosen to cap the report writing cost at 1hr, which is extremely generous. There are other OT’s out there charging upwards of $600 per assessment (and that’s not a therapist who has honed their skills based on the needs of one patient population).

 

You also need to remember that as OT’s we have a 4-year University degree – in my case, I actually have 6.5 years of university training, 1000s of hours of unpaid clinical training while studying, plus 30+ hours of continuing professional development every single year. We have insurance to pay, rent and/or in my case petrol, and other business expenses. I have also self-funded 3 trips to the USA to learn more about hypermobility conditions so that I can offer the best possible service.

 

A lot of my colleagues have urged me to charge more, but I realise that money doesn’t grow on trees, especially for patients who are living with chronic health conditions and who are often on pensions or struggling to make ends meet. I have tried to keep prices as low as possible while still being able to cover costs.
I am a Senior Occupational Therapist who has dedicated my career to working with people with hypermobility and related conditions. I don’t see patients for other things like strokes, or orthopaedic rehab like other adult occupational therapists. I focus only on hypermobility (and comorbidities likes POTS, Fibromyalgia, Fatigue), combining my university education in occupational therapy, counselling & mental health and years of experience working with people with these conditions across the lifespan.

 

I have spoken at conferences in the USA and Australia, and have educated other therapists about hypermobility. If you want a thorough assessment of your hypermobility, documentation or insight into how it’s impacting your day to day life, and recommendations for changes that can be made, then I’m your OT!
Reasons for paying for a report include:
  • Doctors request
  • Being able to take something back to a doctor or health professional which outlines all that we covered
  • If you have trouble remembering all that is covered in the appointment
  • Detailed recommendations (far more detailed that those made in the appointment e.g. what equipment to buy and from where)
  • For your own records
  • For applications for funding or for other services you are accessing (e.g. NDIS)

HypermobilOT is now more broadly “Michelle O’Sullivan Occupational Therapist” – with some differences.

The services I offer now are only to adults living with connective tissue disorders and related comorbidities. I no longer work directly with those under the age of 18.

You may be wondering why? Because there are a LOT more paediatric occupational therapy practices who can do similar work to what I used to do. And in 2019, there will be more, as I will be offering more training to Paediatric therapists in hypermobility. If you’re having trouble finding a paediatric OT who is hypermobility-savvy, let me know and I will see if I can help you find one!

As a health professional registered with the Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency, I am bound by strict rules of practice. These include advertising and marketing. Health professionals registered with AHPRA are not allowed to use testimonials or reviews from patients as part of their advertising.

 

That’s why you won’t find any testimonials on my website or social media accounts. I get great feedback from people all the time which I would love to share, I’m just not allowed to, as it might be seen as coercive or talking you into something you don’t need. We don’t want that to happen!

 

If you have questions, please contact Michelle

Online Appointment Questions

Online consultations are for anyone who lives outside the Service Area listed here. If you live in Sydney and can get to Leichhardt, that is preferable to an online consultation, as you can claim it on Medicare or a Private Health Fund, if you have a EPC referral (Medicare) or cover with your health fund.

International consultations are also possible. The whole point of online consultations is to make sure location is no longer a reason why people can’t get the help and support they need to reach their potential.

USA: If you’re interested in a consultation, please contact me before making an appointment as I need to tweak my insurance coverage to see you. No problem!

At your appointment time, we connect via the nominated platform (e.g. Zoom, Vsee or FaceTime). From there, it’s just like any other consultation, except I can’t shake your hand or touch you!

Everything we need to cover can be done via video, so you’re not missing out on too much – except being able to claim on Medicare or a Health Fund.

Please note: You will be sent an invoice for your appointment prior to the consultation. This will need to be paid BEFORE your appointment in order for your appointment to go ahead.

Unfortunately, you cannot claim on Medicare or your Private Health Fund for Occupational Therapy consultations over the internet. Medicare and Health Funds require that the service be provided face-to-face to be eligible for rebates.

Payments & Claiming

Yes, I do for disability pensioners (DSP) & students. For each different assessment or appointment there is also a concession rate, marked clearly by “Concession” or (C). A valid disability pension card or student card is required to access these rates.

For face to face appointments, you can pay by credit card, EFT or cash.

For online appointments, an invoice will be sent prior to your appointment. You can pay via bank transfer (on receiving invoice) or credit card (when you book).

You can claim a Medicare rebate if you have a current Enhanced Primary Care / Complex Disease Management Plan with Team Care Arrangements from your GP. Please talk to your doctor about this. Generally speaking, you are eligible for this type of referral if you have a chronic condition and see 2 or more allied health professionals. This referral needs to have my name “Michelle O’Sullivan” on it, and at least one (1) session allocated to Occupational Therapy.

If you’re eligible for a rebate through Medicare, that can be processed online at the time of consultation.

For private health fund claims, a receipt will be emailed to you for you to submit to your health fund.

For self managed NDIS clients, a receipt will be provided to you upon payment.

For plan managed NDIS clients, a receipt will provided to your plan manager. Please note payment be the plan manager will be required prior to the appointment.

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