The list below may answer some of your questions about the services we offer. We are also happy to discuss your options with you over the phone. More information about how to contact us can be found here.
What is treatment like?
Treatment for posttraumatic stress is conducted individually with one of our clinical psychologists. The treatment will last from 9 to 12 sessions depending on which program you are in. Sessions are typically carried out weekly and last for up to 90 minutes each. During the program you will be working with your psychologist to develop new strategies for dealing with your posttraumatic stress reactions.
Our grief treatment program is run individually for 11 weeks, with each weekly session lasting for up to 90 minutes. The program is aimed at helping you develop new skills for managing distressing grief reactions.
Where can I get treatment?
Treatment is offered at two locations (see ‘contact us’ for more details):
1) The Westmead Institute, Westmead (in Sydney’s western suburbs)
2) University of NSW, Randwick (in Sydney’s eastern suburbs)
Who provides the treatment?
All of our treatments are conducted by qualified clinical psychologists who have specialist training in working with posttraumatic stress and grief reactions.
Do I need a referral?
No. You can refer yourself.
How much does it cost?
Nothing. The government funds the Clinic with research grants in order to investigate treatments for posttraumatic stress and grief. This enables us to provide a free, specialist service.
Can I get a report?
No. We cannot provide detailed reports for medico-legal or insurance purposes.
Is the treatment confidential?
Personal information will be treated with the highest possible level of confidentiality, but there are certain limitations to confidentiality that will be explained to you in full if you contact the Clinic. These limitations relate to risk of harm and the publication of treatment outcome studies. If results from a treatment trial that you are involved in are published, you will not be personally identified.
What does it mean that this is a research unit?
Receiving treatment from a research unit means that you are receiving cutting-edge, evidence-based treatment provided by a team of individuals who specialise in the areas of trauma and grief. Because we are a research unit, however, we are not able to treat everyone. In order to get treatment at the Clinic the primary issue that you are seeking help for needs to be related to posttraumatic stress or grief. Please contact us on 8627 3314 if you have any queries about this.
Where can I get more information?
Your GP can be a good starting point when seeking help. He or she can help to identify and explain the difficulties you are experiencing and refer you to the appropriate organisations and practitioners. Ensure you make a longer appointment (Extended Consultation) to have your condition assessed and to obtain professional advice on your treatment options.
Who do I contact if I have concerns or complaints about the research conducted?
All of our studies have been approved by the Western Sydney Local Health District and the University of New South Wales Research Ethics and Compliance Committee. If you have any concerns about the conduct of our studies, or your rights as a study participant, you may contact:
The Westmead Institute:
Ms Margot McEwan, Manager Governance and Administration - p: 8627 3003 or email margot.mcewan@ sydney.edu.au
The University of NSW:
Dr Heidi Gaulke, Research Ethics and Compliance Support representatitive - p: 9385 6222 or email humanethics@ unsw.edu.au
If you need immediate assistance or support, you can call your local Community Health Centre’s Mental Health or Crisis team. You can also call Lifeline on 13 11 14 for confidential 24-hour counselling and referrals.