Our Service Policies

CANCELLATION POLICY

Please read this policy carefully.

You do not have to agree to this policy however we will be unable to provide you with the service without your agreement.

The act of booking any appointment with our service means that you agree to this policy in full.

1. Why do we need this cancellation policy?

  • It is not possible to fill a 50+ minute session with short notice
  • Your counsellor dedicates significant time and care to session planning and preparation
  • Your counsellor has limited sessions per day
  • To be fair to other clients who would have taken the appointment time if given sufficient notice
  • There are substantial overhead costs associated with providing you with this service

2. Cancellation notice required to avoid fees:

  • For all COUNSELLING appointments we require at least 24 hours (1 full day) notice of cancellation.

*Except in the case of an illness or family emergency – see below.

3. What is the cancellation fee?

  • For all COUNSELLING appointments the cancellation fee is 25% of the full consultation fee if required notice is not provided where 6-24 hours’ notice is given for the cancellation.
  • For all COUNSELLING appointments the cancellation fee is 50% of the full consultation fee if required notice is not provided where 1-6 hours’ notice is given for the cancellation.
  • For all COUNSELLING appointments the non-attendance fee is 100% of the full consultation fee if no notice is provided or less than 1 hours’ notice is given for the cancellation.
  • Medicare rebates are not claimable for missed appointments which means full consultations fees are inclusive of the rebated amount.

4. What is meant by “illness or family emergency”?

We understand that illnesses and family emergencies sometimes occur and we will not charge a cancellation fee in such cases.

A medical certificate may at our discretion be required to waive the cancellation fee.

For clarity, please note the following examples of “family emergencies”:

  • An illness, injury or death
  • A car accident
  • A robbery or assault

Please also note the following examples which are not considered “family emergencies” under this policy:

  • A meeting called at work or any changes to work rosters or travel requirements
  • A school, sports or extracurricular event
  • A family activity or holiday
  • Changes to the availability of a babysitter or child care service

Although we accept that such events may be beyond your control and can be genuine reasons for late cancellation, we still require that you take responsibility for these types of circumstances and a cancellation fee would still apply.

5.  What happens if a cancellation fee is not paid promptly?

If a cancellation fee is charged under this policy and you do not pay the fee promptly we will be unable to continue providing you with the service. We also reserve the right to take any further reasonable action necessary to recover any unpaid fees and to bill you for any reasonable additional costs incurred in taking such action.

We hope you find this to be a fair and reasonable policy and we thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

CONFIDENTIALITY

Bunbury Counselling adheres to the Code of Ethics by the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW).  The AASW holds a longstanding commitment to the protection of client confidentiality.  This is expressed in detail in their Code of Ethics and is mandated as an obligation for all members. 

Your consultation records are maintained in both paper and electronic form, accessible only by your therapist and the Bunbury Counselling therapeutic team.

By law, health professionals like counsellors and social workers have to keep most of what you tell them confidential. At Bunbury Counselling, your therapist will talk to you about confidentiality in your first session. You are encouraged to ask about it if you’re worried and we encourage you to try and get a clear understanding of what is confidential in your sessions.

In accordance with legal and ethical requirements, we have a duty of care to clients and the general public.  Bunbury Counselling holds duty of care as a fundamental aspect of professional and supportive practice. Consequently, in certain circumstances Bunbury Counselling may break confidentiality to prevent serious harm to a client or the general public. In such circumstances, every attempt to enlist the agreement of a client will be made before action is taken and clients will be encouraged to notify relevant services with the support of their therapist.  In the event that consent is not granted but Bunbury Counselling believes that a client is at high risk of serious harm to themselves or others, they may contact the Department of Communities (Child Protection and Family Support), the police, or a client’s carer or family member.

Bunbury Counselling maintains that if a therapist decides it is necessary to report something, it does not mean that the therapist does not care or respect you. Instead, the therapist will be acting out of care and respect to your wellbeing and safety.

Information discussed in confidence during a session is not considered to be privileged information, and, consequently, a therapist at Bunbury Counselling may be compelled at some point in future by a court of law to reveal that information.

With your consent we can share information with third parties for the benefit of your wellbeing.  Your consent for this will be obtained in a separate ‘Consent for Release of Information’ form.

If at any stage you feel unsure about what a therapist and Bunbury Counselling does and does not have to report, we encourage you to ask and they will tell you.