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Wellbeing FAQ

Meridian Wellbeing Services is not a crisis service. We are an appointment-based service and we only respond to phone calls and emails during normal business hours - 9:00am to 4:00pm, Monday - Friday.

Our Mental Health Clinicians welcome discussions about difficult mental health experiences and how we can support keeping you safe. However, the focus of our service is on providing therapeutic support and counselling in a non-emergency setting.

If you are in crisis or if you have concerns about your safety or the safety of someone else, please contact emergency services or crisis support services.

Crisis contacts and other supports can be found here

  • You can submit an enquiry by sending a message from our Contact Page. Remember to tick the box "Send this as an enquiry for Meridian Wellbeing Services (Counselling, Psychology, Alcohol and Other Drugs services)" to make sure your enquiry is received by our Wellbeing Services team.
  • You can also direct any enquiries to us by calling 02 6257 0372 or by emailing [email protected] 
  • You can submit a referral by completing one of the below forms 

Self-Referral Form

Client Referral Form

Eligibility criteria for Counselling: 

  • Age: 15 years old and above
  • Currently living, working, or studying in the ACT
  • LGBTIQA+ people or people questioning/exploring identity and/or sexuality, their families-of-choice, carers and allies
  • People living with HIV and impacted by HIV

 

Eligibility criteria for Inclusive Pathways – Psychology: 

  • Age: 16 years old and above
  • Currently living, working, or studying in the ACT
  • LGBTIQA+ people, people questioning/exploring identity and/or sexuality
  • Have a Mental Health Treatment Plan (less than 12 months old)

Counselling

The Counselling service is free for people meeting our eligibility criteria and is available for people without a Medicare card.

Follow this link for more information about the service's eligibility criteria.

 

Inclusive Pathways – Psychology

Inclusive Pathways (Psychology) is funded by the Capital Health Network (CHN) to provide free psychological therapies and social and emotional wellbeing support to eligible LGBTIQA+ people in the ACT.

Follow this link for more information about the service's eligibility criteria.

Meridian Wellbeing Services uses a Segment of Care model, which is designed to increase client access and cater to your specific needs and goals.

The Segment of Care model begins with a Care Planning Session, during which you and your clinician can discuss your needs and develop a plan for your therapeutic support. Following this initial session, you can access between 4 to 8 sessions. The exact number of sessions will be collaboratively determined with your clinician, usually at the end of the Care Planning Session.

Upon completing a segment of care, you can re-engage by submitting another referral, subject to a maximum of 12 sessions per 12-month period.

Wait time between Segments of Care will vary over time.

Counselling

The current wait time for Counselling is at least 4 weeks.

 

Inclusive Pathways - Psychology 

The current wait time for Inclusive Pathways is at least 4 weeks.

If you are able to come in for face-to-face support, this is preferred, although we understand this is not always possible. We provide online support via video conferencing on request.

To ensure your safety and the safety of the clinician, you will need to agree to certain conditions regarding video conferencing sessions.

A copy of our Zoom Protocol can be found here.

We accept both self-referrals and referrals from other service providers.

Self-Referral Form

Client Referral Form

 

Please note that eligibility criteria apply for our Counselling service and Inclusive Pathways (Psychology).

Counselling Services

You do not need a Mental Health Treatment Plan.

 

Inclusive Pathways - Psychology

You do need an active Mental Health Treatment Plan completed by a GP which is less than 12 months old. 

You can talk to us about everything that’s going on for you, including anything that is impacting your wellbeing. Our mental health professionals are committed to providing a safe, non-judgmental, and inclusive therapeutic environment. Many of our staff are peers and all our mental health professionals are experienced working in therapeutic settings with the LGBTIQA+ community.

We are sex positive and affirming of:

  • Gender
  • Sexuality
  • Kink
  • Non-monogamy
  • Neurodivergence
  • Intersectional identities

There may be circumstances where specific mental health needs require support beyond what we can offer, in which case we will endeavour to support your wellbeing and your access to appropriate alternative services. Currently, we do not provide couples counselling (although we can provide individual support on relationship challenges), diagnostic assessments, or Gender Affirmation HRT Letter / Surgery Letter for people under 18 years of age. We are also not a suitable resource for emergency support – crisis contacts and other supports can be found HERE.

We understand that, for a lot of people, taking the first step of attending a counselling or psychology appointment can be stressful or intimidating. Your first appointment with a Counsellor or a Psychologist is called a Care Planning Session. In this session we will:

  • Get to know each other and ensure you feel safe and supported
  • Talk about the session, including confidentiality and safety
  • Begin a conversation about what has brought you to the service and how we can help support you
  • Listen to understand your unique circumstances and lived experience
  • Discuss your goals to guide the planning of your Segment of Care

In circumstances where there are other support needs, our Clinical Care Coordinator may reach out to discuss how we can best supoprt you.

At your first appointment, we will ask you to read and complete a Client Intake Form. This will give you information about how Meridian Wellbeing Services operates, including confidentiality and privacy, and we will ask for your consent to proceed with access to our service.

For those accessing Inclusive Pathways, we will also ask for your consent to share basic and limited de-identified data with the ACT government who funds the program.

The form will ask you for contact details and various other information that will help us support you, including about your pronouns, gender, sexuality, cultural background, any current concerns about your wellbeing, and an emergency contact. You can choose whether or not to provide this information.

We take your privacy very seriously. Ordinarily, the information that you are one of our clients, anything you share with your clinician, records of appointments and client notes are held confidentially and securely. However, there are some circumstances in which we may need to share information that would usually be confidential:

  • If there is immediate risk to your safety or the safety of other people
  • If there is an indication of possible harm to a child or person under 18 years old
  • If records or notes are subpoenaed by a court
  • With your written or verbal consent, such as to facilitate referral to a new service.

For those accessing Inclusive Pathways, we will also ask for your consent to share basic and limited de-identified data with the ACT government who funds the program.

If you have any questions or concerns relating to confidentiality, you are welcome to contact Meridian Wellbeing Services or to discuss this in more detail with your clinician.

We understand that on some occasions it may not be possible for people to attend their appointments. Providing advance notice that you cannot attend your appointment means the appointment slot can be offered to someone else.


If you can't attend your appointment, please notify us at least 24 hours in advance using the contact options below.
• Call: 02 6257 0372
• SMS: 0412 882 855
• Email: [email protected]

Please be advised that:
• Cancellation and immediate re-scheduling will incur no penalty up to 24 hours prior to appointment times.
• Cancellation within 24 hours of appointment times or No-shows will be counted as one of the sessions from your Segment-of-care.
• The maximum number of late cancellations/reschedules and no-shows is two.

If you miss your appointment, we will attempt to contact you by your preferred contact method to reschedule. Due to the long wait times for our services, we kindly ask that you book a new appointment within 5 business days of cancellation. The new appointment itself can be for a later date that is suitable for you. If we do not hear from you within 5 business days, your Segment-of-care will be closed.

Click here for a list of your rights and responsibilities.

There is also a poster detailing this information displayed in the waiting area of our service.

Click here for a list of Carers' rights and responsibilities.

There is also a poster detailing this information displayed in the waiting area of our services.

Our COVID precautions are in line with ACT government requirements. You are welcome to wear a mask during your visit at Meridian, however, this is not mandated.

Sometimes you may not connect with a clinician or the kind of therapy being provided – we understand that this can happen. We welcome your thoughts on the style or type of therapy that might work better for you and we can work with you to try alternatives and find something that works for your needs. You may wish to discuss this with your clinician or contact Meridian Wellbeing Services to discuss possible options.

While we do not provide medical certificates, we can complete a Certificate of Attendance for you on request.

Meridian is centrally located in Turner, ACT.

Address: Havelock House, 85 Northbourne Ave, Turner ACT 2612.

There is a tram stop nearby and limited visitor parking. Please see the attached Map for more detailed directions.

Meridian Wellbeing Services has a private entrance to our therapeutic space on the corner of Gould and Moore Streets. When you arrive, as you face Havelock House from the Gould Street side, the Meridian Wellbeing Services entrance is situated to the right of the main Meridian entrance. If you end up at the main Meridian entrance, that is perfectly fine, a staff member will provide directions.

If you get stuck or are unsure in any way please feel free to ring us on (02) 6257 0372 for help with directions.