Logo of Psychology by IPAR

Psychology by IPAR opens doors to support community with mental health

A growing number of Australians are experiencing poor mental health and getting timely access to the professional help they need can be difficult. On top of this, the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting lockdowns and restrictions have led to a rise in demand for mental health support, with crisis lines and other support services experiencing unprecedented levels of demand.

To meet this growing demand and support people with their mental health, we are pleased to announce the launch of a new service: Psychology by IPAR.

Psychology by IPAR will provide client-centric, goal-oriented treatment and support for people aged 12 and over living with mental health concerns. Delivered by IPAR’s large and growing team of registered and provisional psychologists, we aim to empower people to find solutions that will enable them to cope effectively with the challenges that life presents to them and improve their overall mental health and wellbeing.

Psychology by IPAR will offer a range of services accessed via:

  • Medicare’s Better Access to Mental Health Care Program
  • Self-referral from private clients
  • Private Health Insurance
  • Workers Compensation
  • Employee Assistance Programs

Services from Psychology by IPAR are available nationally via telehealth, and face-to-face from select locations across New South Wales (subject to COVID-19 restrictions). As a new service, our wait times are low, meaning people can get faster access to the psychological support they need.

Further information can be found at www.ipar.com.au/psychology.

To make an appointment or referral, please phone 1800 644 327 or email psychology@ipar.com.au

Please note: Psychology by IPAR is not a bulk billing clinic.

COVID-19 Information and Planning

COVID-19 Information and Planning

IPAR is taking a precautionary approach to managing the spread of COVID-19, which is in line with the latest national health advice.

Centralised information, planning and expertise

IPAR’s parent company, MedHealth, has a working group to ensure we are sharing information, optimising our preparation and managing any issues that may arise from the COVID-19 pandemic. This group monitors the situation daily. We are well positioned to access any additional expert advice we may need. Our Chief Medical Officer, Dr Peter Steadman, has engaged the services of two leading doctors to contribute, assisting with specific disease advice and organisational health management. We are basing all our centralised advice and screening protocols on the Australian Department of Health advice and daily updates.

Our operations

As much as possible, our operations will proceed as normal. As always, in the event of any disruption or changes, we will keep you informed.

Visitors to our premises

All our premises are operating with robust screening and management protocols. Our focus is on safeguarding all visitors.

  • All appointment reminder processes whether by phone, email or text (where allowed) screen clients, customers or visitors with the questions listed below. This occurs 1-2 days before clients are to attend appointments at our premises. We also ensure that our clients know that they cannot bring more than one other person to the appointment with them. Where mask use is required, clients will be reminded that they will need to wear a mask throughout their appointment.
  • Additionally, all front-of-house team members screen clients, customers or visitors upon arrival:
      1. Have you or anyone within you household, visited any of the currently listed exposure sites nationally or travelled internationally in the past 14 days?
      2. Are you or anyone within you household currently experiencing any cold or flu symptoms?
      3. Have you or anyone within your household had a COVID-19 test in the past 7 days?
      4. Have you or anyone within your household been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the past 14 days?
      5. Have you undergone COVID19 Vaccinations?

Please note:

  • If yes to question 1:
    • International travellers need to have completed 14 days quarantine and received a COVID negative test.
    • For anyone that has been to an identified hotspot, IPAR will review hotspot requirements and reschedule appointment as per these requirements. Please note that there are differing levels of restrictions for sites. Some sites require isolation for 14 days, some require isolation until negative results received and others do not require isolation. If isolation is not required or isolation is only required until negative tests are received (and a negative result has been received) then appointments can go ahead. If isolation is required the appointment is rescheduled.
  • If yes to question 2:
    • If a person presents with cold and flu symptoms, the appointment will be rescheduled until they are symptom free for 48 hours.
  • If yes to question 3:
    • If a person presents who has undergone a COVID19 test in the past 7 days, a negative result and/or any isolation requirements are provided/completed prior to proceeding with an appointment. If results are still pending, the appointment is rescheduled.
  • If yes to question 4:
    • If a person has had close contact with a confirmed COVID19 positive person within 14 days, the appointment is rescheduled.
  • If no to question 5:
    • If a person has not undergone both doses of COVID19 vaccination, IPAR will consider the below actions:
      • A review of services being provided as they may pose risk to the team and the client, for example, a change of locations to outdoors
      • Consider whether vaccination status may limit clients access to facilities required for services
      • Review PPE being utilised and consider increasing from face mask to face mask and face shield
      • Increase social distancing
      • Increase hand santisation and high touch area cleans of areas used
  • MedHealth has set up an advisory hotline on COVID-19, offering advice and support on each unique scenario for our people. Should a client present at our premises with any potential exposure to COVID-19, our team member calls the hotline for advice on next steps, while also immediately isolating the individual in question, ensuring mask use and supporting them to mitigate risk as they travel home to seek medical support via telephone. Under consultation with the Specialist, the appointment does not go ahead if there is any identified risk.

Mask use

  • Victoria:  Masks must be used indoors and outdoors.
  • New South Wales: As per current NSW Government requirements listed here.

Protocols if someone presents with cold or flu symptoms to our offices

  • The individual is isolated into a room and provided with tissues or a mask.
  • Transportation home is organised via taxi, with advice to not visit public places.
  • For non-team members: IPAR ensures they contact their treating practitioner of the Coronavirus information line on 1800 020 080.
  • For team members: IPAR ensures they contact the Cogent hotline – 1800 264 368.

Protocols, support and considerations for our people

If any of our team members are unwell, we ask they do not come into the office. This is for any illness, whether respiratory or not. It is an especially important principle at the moment.

We are following all Australian Department of Health guidelines on travel and self-imposed quarantine.

Additionally, MedHealth’s employer direct business Cogent Thinking has been operating a hotline within MedHealth since March 2020, to support our team in managing risk and ensuring safety.

As always, IPAR puts the health and safety of our people, customers and clients at the forefront of our thinking and actions. Please do not hesitate to get in touch if there are any issues you would like to discuss.

Women in Insurance award

IPAR Executive General Manager wins ANZIIF Award

Photo of Jo Broonhall, Executive General ManagerIPAR’s Executive General Manager Jo Broomhall is the joint winner of the ANZIIF Allianz Donna Walker Award for Insurance Leadership.

This award, honouring the late Donna Walker who was a senior executive in the insurance industry for over 20 years, shines a light on individuals who have contributed significantly to the development of insurance professionalism and promoting diversity and inclusion throughout the industry.

Jo was nominated by her colleagues at IPAR who praised her steady and supportive leadership style and mentoring, particularly over the past 18 months. The win is well-deserved recognition of Jo’s commitment and energy to her people and in growing cohesive, high-performing teams across IPAR.

Image of COVID Matters issue 02

COVID Matters Newsletter Edition 2

There is still so much to grapple with when it comes to COVID-19 and the workplace. Our COVID Matters newsletter edition 02 sees IPAR once again partner with MedHealth and mlcoa to bring you ‘bite size’ summaries of some of the most pertinent research in the medical industry, and in particular what the experts are saying about COVID-19 and its ongoing impact in, and on, the workplaces of Australia.

Please view issue 02 of the COVID Matters newsletter here.

Your COVID coverage

As medical, allied health and occupational health and rehabilitation specialists, the teams at IPAR and mlcoa already provide the types of services that support Australian businesses to make informed decisions and reduce risks, all while improving health and employment outcomes for people.

Please talk with us about the issues you are managing. We’ll either have a service that can support you and your people; or we’ll draw on our diverse capabilities to help you solve any issues and create better outcomes.

Our experts will continue to engage in regular reviews of journal articles and the latest research and thinking around COVID-19. We will bring you summaries of such in future editions of COVID Matters.

COVID Newsletter

COVID Matters Newsletter Edition 1

There is still so much to grapple with when it comes to COVID-19 and the workplace. That’s why we have partnered with MedHealth and mlcoa to bring you ‘bite size’ summaries of some of the most pertinent research in the medical industry, and in particular what the experts are saying about COVID-19 and its ongoing impact in, and on, the workplaces of Australia.

This is provided in the attached first edition of the COVID Matters newsletter.

Your COVID coverage

As medical, allied health and occupational health and rehabilitation specialists, the teams at IPAR and mlcoa already provide the types of services that support Australian businesses to make informed decisions and reduce risks, all while improving health and employment outcomes for people.

Please talk with us about the issues you are managing. We’ll either have a service that can support you and your people; or we’ll draw on our diverse capabilities to help you solve any issues and create better outcomes.

Staying across what matters

Our experts are engaging in regular reviews of journal articles and the latest research and thinking around COVID-19. This newsletter will come out regularly until a sharp focus on COVID is no longer as relevant (roll on!).

Webinar - Work and Health in the Age of COVID-19

Webinar – Work and Health in the Age of COVID-19

Workplaces across Australia and the world have been impacted by COVID-19. Many people have had to quickly shift to working remotely. Others in essential services remained at work following strict protocols to ensure everyone’s safety. And a large segment of the workforce have experienced a reduction in their employment or have been stood down from their position.

Experts from mlcoa, IPAR and Cogent Thinking have come together to present a free webinar – Work and Health in the Age of COVID-19. The webinar will explore how the global pandemic has affected our health and wellbeing, whether we are fit to return to work as we knew it, or have we and our workplaces changed for the foreseeable future.

This interactive panel discussion will be presented by Dr Kevin O’Daly, Psychiatrist from mlcoa, with guest speakers Josephine Piccolo, Occupational Psychologist from IPAR, and Alistair Jackson, Customer Experience Specialist from Cogent Thinking. These experts will provide their insights on COVID-19’s impact on individuals and the workplace, plus share strategies on how to look after yourselves, and support your teams and the cases you are managing through these unprecedented times.

There will be the opportunity to ask questions throughout the session, or you can submit a query beforehand via the webinar registration page. We look forward to you joining us.

Work and Health in the Age of COVID-19

Date: Wednesday, 29 July 2020

Time:

12.00pm to 1.00pm     – Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, Queensland, Tasmania & Victoria

11.30am to 12.30pm    – Northern Territory & South Australia

10.00am to 11.00am    – Western Australia

To register: please click here

Woman on video conferencing call while working from home

Home Ergonomics Support and Training to Work Safely from Home

As more and more people are working from home across Australia, employers are seeking easily accessible home ergonomics support and training for their employees on how to create a safe, comfortable and appropriate work environment.

Whether a team member needs a one-on-one home ergonomic assessment, or a whole team of people need virtual home ergonomics training, IPAR is ready to assist.

One-on-one Home Ergonomic Assessment

The home ergonomic assessment is a 30-minute phone or Skype consultation between the team member and one of IPAR’s Allied Health Professionals. Working through a thorough home ergonomic checklist, the consultation assesses and addresses risks factors in the home environment and provides practical advice on work station set up, accessories, tasks and duties.

Strong4Life™ Virtual Home Ergonomic Training

The virtual home ergonomics training is conducted by one of IPAR’s Strong4Life™ trainers via video conferencing technology. Available to up to 10 team members at a time, the training covers ergonomic strategies and principles that participants can implement in their own home, for a comfortable set up with their own equipment.

To learn more or to make a booking, please link in with Aaron Bowes or email rehab@ipar.com.au. Or to find the IPAR office located closest to you, please refer to our office locator.

NSW Drought Relief Community Sessions

POSTPONED: NSW Drought Relief Community Sessions

Tamworth: In line with the most recent Government advice to avoid all non-essential contact, we have made the tough decision to postpone a number of our rural NSW drought relief mental health community support sessions until the end of April. After which time, we will review the situation and provide further feedback on future dates.

Sessions postponed include Moree, Coonabarabran, Tamworth and Gunnedah.

Following community feedback, we have however decided to proceed with the Bingara community session as planned, this coming Monday 23rd March.

A decision on the remaining two sessions at Inverell and Tenterfield will be made closer to the time.

For further information, please contact Melissa Butler via mbutler@ipar.com.au or 0434 524 870.

 

Supporting the Mental Health of Drought Affected Communities

Tamworth: A major impact of drought within communities is the effect it has on individual’s mental health and wellbeing, due to extreme and prolonged periods of stress and uncertainty.

Tackling the issue of mental health head-on, supporting her local community of Tamworth and surrounding region, Melissa Butler, Area Manager – western NSW, at IPAR and her team are spearheading a free mental health support and educational program to raise the topic of and safeguard the mental health of small businesses, families and individuals affected by drought.

IPAR partnered with the Hunter New England and Central Coast Primary Health Network (HNECC PHN) to raise an Empowering our Communities grant, funding the project and delivery of much-needed mental health education and a community support program to be delivered across 10 western NSW locations, including outreach areas.

These free sessions, comprising a formal presentation followed by informal drop-in centre, are scheduled at:

Dubbo
Monday 9 March, 12 noon
Dubbo Regional Council, Ground Floor Conference Room West, Cnr Church and Darling St, Dubbo

Nyngan
Tuesday 10 March, 9am
Nyngan Town Hall, 71 Cobar Street

Bourke
Wednesday 11 March, 9am
Bourke Shire Council, 29 Mitchell Street

Bingara
Monday 23 March, 9am
Bingara Council, 74 Maitland Street

Moree
Monday 23 March, 2pm till 5pm
Moree Family Support Service, 21 Auburn Street

Tamworth
Friday 17 April, 11:30am
Calrossy Anglican School, Brisbane Street

Coonabarabran
Monday 20 April, 10am
Coonabarabran Council, in the Gallery Room, Warrumbungle Shire Council

Inverell
Monday 4 May, 11am
Inverell Public Library, Campbell Street

Tenterfield
Tuesday 5 May, 9am
Tenterfield Bowling Club, Corner of Molesworth and Station Street

Dates and locations are to be confirmed for Gunnedah, so please check back here for further updates.

For further information, please contact Melissa Butler via mbutler@ipar.com.au or 0434 524 870.

Journal Of Cancer Survivorship

Published in the Journal of Cancer Survivorship

Helping people with cancer return to health, wellness and work is a strong focus for us here at IPAR. We are proud that our work, along with that of our valued partners Swiss Re and AIA Australia, has been published in the Journal of Cancer Survivorship.

‘Building a novel occupational rehabilitation program to support cancer survivors to return to health, wellness, and work in Australia’ authored by Dr Dianne Sheppard, Dorothy Frost, Michael Jefford, Georgia Halkett and Moira O’Connor explores the outcomes of an innovative pilot that aims to improve support for survivors seeking to transition back to work.

The program development was collaboration at its best: drawing together researchers, occupational rehabilitation and insurance sectors, cancer support services, and survivors to develop a tailored, multimodal program. And it works: preliminary outcomes showed 67% of participants with improved certified capacity to work, translating to 87% with improved work status.

Read the article abstract here and for more information about how you can support people recovering from cancer, please contact Dorothy Frost.