Person split down the middle, with the left side coloured and the right side just outline
“Beneath the surface of the protective parts of trauma survivors there exists an undamaged essence, a Self that is confident, curious, and calm, a Self that has been sheltered from destruction by the various protectors that have emerged in their efforts to ensure survival. Once those protectors trust that it is safe to separate, the Self will spontaneously emerge, and the parts can be enlisted in the healing process”
Bessel A. van der Kolk

We are a not-for-profit association based in Western Australian, run by a group of dedicated volunteers, all who have either experience in the treatment of complex trauma, a lived experience of complex trauma, or a passion for improving outcomes for survivors.

We understand that it takes time to build a relationship with someone who is on your side, and we want to make sure there are more people around who ‘get’ that to help you along that journey to wellness.

In everything we do, we are guided by the and believe the question that should be asked is “what’s happened to you…?” not “what’s wrong with you…?”.


Overview

We can help you FIND A LOCAL COMPLEX TRAUMA TRAINED THERAPIST who is experienced and qualified to help you make sense of it all in relation to your lived experience. All therapists listed in our directory have been through a rigorous assessment process where they have demonstrated their skills and knowledge of best practices and guidelines for treating CT; and all of them understand the unique nature of trauma and how it can manifest in those who are experiencing the lingering impact of CT on their lives.

We’ve got some practical information on WHAT TO EXPECT FROM TREATMENT, including an overview of the different types of treatment that are commonly used to help survivors heal and build resilience.

We also have a useful summary on how to navigate rebates and FINANCIAL SUPPORT available when seeking treatment (yep, we’re talking medicare). In addition to the official website links, we have also provided a few tips and shortcuts that can help you navigate the labyrinth of information available on each (yes, we find it a labyrinth too!)

And finally, rather than reinventing the wheel, we have collated a list of helpful, clinically responsible RESOURCES with loads of potentially useful information for survivors.

You can read our full story HERE


Safety first

For any human relationship to ‘work’, safety is important - but this is even more true when working with the consequences of complex (relational) trauma.

Treatment for complex trauma is predominantly about reconnecting you with what has previously been experienced as unsafe or disavowed, at a pace that is tolerable for you. These could include, for example, emotions, sensations, awareness, and/or thoughts. A trauma-trained therapist will use a combination of body-based (somatic), emotion-based (affective), and thinking-based (cognitive) approaches to help you reconnect with your-‘self’ again.

The better you get to know yourself, over time, it will become easier for you to start to trust yourself again. This is vitally important, as people who have experienced complex trauma have had experiences that taught them the world and people are Not Safe.

With a trauma-informed supportive therapist, you can become better at noticing, making sense of, and managing the sensations, emotions, and thoughts that come up for you, in ways that work better for you. This helps you to establish/re-establish a sense of Inner Safety.

And once you’ve established Inner Safety, it becomes much easier to achieve Outer Safety. This contributes to more rewarding relationships and reduces the risk of getting retraumatised.

You and your therapist will work together to ensure that the therapy space itself becomes a safe-enough space for you. As you start exploring these kinds of experiences in the relative safety of a reasonably controlled, professional context, you can learn new ways of engaging - both with yourself and the world.


How long will treatment take?

How long is a piece of string, I hear you ask? That is an extremely difficult question to answer. It depends on how the kind(s) of trauma you experienced have affected YOU. It depends on what you are ready to work with, and also on what you’d like to work on. Sometimes, it also depends on the resources you have available to allocate to your healing journey at any given period in your life - time, money, energy, fuel in your car....

When your resources are limited, it is sometimes important to spend your time in therapy on establishing safety; creating support systems; receiving psychoeducation; acquiring specific skills; and other practical matters that improve your quality of life, rather than on trauma debriefing per se. (This could be destabilising and/or retraumatising, rather than helpful, if done prematurely or without the necessary safeguards in place first).

However - to lay it on the table - trauma treatment, on average, is generally longer than for many other less complex mental-health presentations. It is perhaps understandable that a problem that may have developed over the course of several years - and that you have since then been coping with for several decades afterwards - is probably unlikely to resolve in a matter of a mere few hours of treatment.

The information below is a quote from Blue Knot Foundation, Australia’s National Centre of Excellence for Complex Trauma:

“For some, treatment may last for decades, whether provided continuously or episodically. For others, treatment may be limited to a specific time, but it rarely can be meaningful if completed in less than 10-20 sessions [emphasis added]. Even therapeutic treatments that are designed to be completed within 20-30 sessions may require more sessions or repetitions of `cycles’, or episodes, of the intervention. And in some cases it may be possible that treatment is needed on and off over a whole lifetime.”

When you start with your therapist, the two of you will work together to find out what you feel able to do, your current state of motivation, and your available resources.

When you start with your therapist, the two of you will work together to find out what you feel able to do, your current state of motivation, and your available resources.

Other times, you may choose to work on educating yourself, or learning a specific skill to deal with one or more aspects of the legacy of complex trauma.

Or perhaps you are ready for the long haul and feel it's time to dive deep and do whatever needs to be done till it’s done.

Whatever your situation, try to take just one step to start feeling better - even if today, that one step simply means making yourself a cup of tea when you’re upset.


"If you can't fly, then run.

If you can't run, then walk.

If you can't walk, then crawl.

But whatever you do you have to keep moving forward."

 
MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.


Funding for trauma treatment

In the sections below, we cover a range of funding options that you may wish to explore when considering trauma treatment.

Where we could, we added helpful weblinks that explain the service better than we can; and here and there we also added a few helpful tips that may help ease the process of navigating all your options.

The information covered in these sections is fairly detailed, and you may want to read it in small bites or with a support person, if you find it a bit overwhelming at first.

(If you come across any information that has become outdated before we do, please feel free to drop us a line via the Contact Us form in the website footer at the bottom of the page!)


It is not a requirement to have a referral to consult with a private clinician, but may apply when you want to claim a rebate from a third party.

Trauma practitioners in private practice set their own rates and many adjust their fees according to their client's financial circumstances.

Most of the trauma-trained therapists listed on our COTWA Directory have listed this information under the FEES tab on their online ‘business card’, but you could also contact a clinician directly to discuss their schedule of fees and any options that may be available for you.

Mental Health Care Plan

To be eligible to receive a rebate on mental health services under Medicare’s Better Access initiative, a person must be referred by their GP (or psychiatrist, paediatrician or consultant physician) to consult with a clinical psychologist; generalist psychologist; certain occupational therapists; and appropriately trained social workers (collectively referred to as ‘allied health services’).

Services from psychologists in other areas of specialisation as well as counsellors and psychotherapists without accredited tertiary qualifications, are not usually eligible for a Mental Health Care Plan rebate.

You need to book in a session with your GP to obtain a Mental Health Care Plan referral. Be sure to advise the practice that you are requiring a Mental Health Care Plan, as most GPs want to set aside more than the standard appointment time for those consultations.

It is not a requirement from Medicare that your referral must be to a specific practitioner. A referral may still be valid even though it is addressed to a practice or simply, for example, ‘Dear Psychologist’.

If you are eligible for a Mental Health Care Plan referral, you are entitled to a rebate for 6-10 individual and/or group mental-health consultations per calendar year. As part of the government’s response to the Covid pandemic, it is possible to claim an additional 10 sessions per calendar year – increasing the number of sessions that will be rebated under Medicare to 20. These additional 10 sessions will be available until at least June 30th, 2022. You do not need to claim these rebates in consecutive consultations, and many people spread it out over the course of their treatment to ease the financial burden on their regular budget. Just let your therapist know when you want to do this, as many nowadays process your claim for a rebate on your behalf at the end of every session.

You will need to arrange a return visit to your doctor after six sessions, to have your referral reviewed and for your doctor to decide whether you meet the eligibility criteria for four more sessions. If you do not attend this review session, you will not be able to claim further Medicare rebates. In addition, in order to be eligible for the additional 10 sessions, you will need to return to your GP for a further review.

All health professionals set their own fees (and for those listed in the COTWA directory, you can find the fees in their profile). Some may bulk-bill (and you can search for those clinicians on the COTWA directory); and others may require an out-of-pocket gap payment.

The specified scope of treatment under the referral, as well as the actual rebate amount per session differ between the various allied-health disciplines, so it would be wise to check this with your therapist beforehand.

You may claim a rebate from either Medicare or your private health fund for any particular session, but not both.

CLICK HERE for more information about health care plans from Health Direct

A word of caution
If you are concerned that a Mental Health Care Plan referral for trauma treatment on your permanent health record may affect your future work options; and/or future insurance needs (such as Death and Total Disability insurance, Professional Indemnity insurance, Income Protection insurance and others), you may want to ask your GP about your options.

Enhanced Primary Care Plan
Sometimes, at their sole discretion, some GPs may also prepare a Chronic Disease Management plan for their patients with complex needs. (Confusingly, some people still refer to this arrangement by its earlier name, Enhanced Primary Care (EPC) plan; or a GP Management plan and/or Team Care Arrangement). It is up to your GP to decide whether you may be eligible for a maximum of five more sessions, at a smaller rebate, with a registered allied health service provider(s) (such as your trauma clinician) to assist with the management of your chronic difficulties.

CLICK HERE for more information and FAQ's about Enhanced Primary Care Plan referrals

Some aspects of mental health care may be covered on private health insurance.

OUTPATIENT TREATMENT
Depending on your health insurance and your policy, you may be able to claim a small rebate on out-of-hospital mental-health treatment. As this varies from health insurance to health insurance and for the cover you have, you should contact your individual health fund and verify what you have covered before engaging with a provider. Be aware that some health insurers only cover psychotherapy if you engage with a clinical psychologist.

Also, you are only allowed to claim a rebate from either Medicare or your private health fund for any particular session, not both at the same time.

Then, it may be wise to also plan for difficult periods in your healing journey.

Some hospitals offer really helpful day-programs for people with a history of complex trauma, that you may want to access as a psychiatric outpatient.


IN-PATIENT TREATMENT
Sometimes, even effective trauma treatment may require a short or longer in-patient hospital admission, while you find your equilibrium again.

For this reason, you may want to make sure that your private health insurance policy also covers at least minimal cover for psychiatry and/or hospitalisation - even if you might really prefer to not use it.

Psychiatric services (and drug and alcohol rehabilitation) only require a two-month waiting period, not the usual 12-month waiting period. This is true even if the condition is pre-existing. In some cases, you may even be able to obtain an exemption from this waiting period and retroactively upgrade your hospital cover.

A once-per-lifetime exemption applies to upgrading your private health insurance to cover psychiatric care in a private hospital, without having to serve a waiting period first.

You may need to specifically request ‘the mental-health waiver’ when upgrading your cover, but it is worth asking your insurer first before utilising this once-off mental health waiver as some health insurers don’t have this waiting period.

For more information about accessing the exemption, please contact your health fund directly. For general information about this exemption, see the DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH website.

If you were to ever require an urgent psychiatric admission but are not currently under the care of a psychiatrist, your GP (or Emergency Department physician) may simply send a referral to the clinic of your choice, addressed to ‘Dear Psychiatrist’. You will then be allocated to a doctor who can admit you as soon as possible. If you wanted to see a particular psychiatrist, this is also possible but may delay the admission process somewhat.

If you’re expecting a hospital admission at some point, it would be wise to contact your health fund, your hospital, and your doctor before things become too overwhelming to still think straight, to find out how much will be covered, how much you will have to pay, and any other expenses (your health fund or Medicare will cover a portion of the Medicare Benefits Schedule fee, but the remainder may be at your own expense).

FINANCIAL QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR DOCTOR
We also recommend that you make a list of the questions that you may want to ask your doctor beforehand - maybe save it on your phone, under a name you’ll remember when flustered, so it is always nearby?

That way, you can whip it out when you don’t have much else to say on a particular day, and get the answers you need before things get hairy. It is always good to know one has ‘options’, or in the absence of that, to start thinking of Plan B!

Here are some questions we think are worth asking:

  1. Do you have a ‘no gap’ or ‘known gap’ agreement with my health fund? (this is really helpful to limit the potential cost of an admission)

  2. If they don’t, ask What would be the ‘gap’ on my medical services while admitted during a hospital stay? (be prepared for it that you may have to ask both your doctor and your health fund before you have the full answer)

  3. What kind of out-of-pocket expenses could I incur during a hospital stay? (for example, some psychiatric and other medical consultations and check-ups can only be claimed through Medicare)

  4. Will there be any excesses and/or co-payments? (some health insurance policies require you to pay an excess or co-payment for admissions to hospital, which you will need to pay directly to the hospital)

  5. Can I please have a written quote of expected and potential expenses that I may incur? (be sure to request the quote at the start of your treatment!)

The NDIS provides support to eligible people with intellectual, physical, sensory, cognitive and psychosocial disability, to help them get the support they need “to live an ordinary life” with the aim of improving their skills and independence over time.

Increasingly, the long-term and often debilitating psychosocial implications of complex trauma are being recognised by the NDIS. If your symptoms are considered “permanent” (i.e. likely to be lifelong, even if it waxes and wanes) and “significant” (i.e. so that it has a substantial impact on your ability to complete everyday activities on your worst days), you may be eligible for funded support from the NDIS.

This could go towards help with daily personal activities; transport; to enable participation in community, social, economic and daily life activities; workplace help, to allow you successfully get or keep employment in the open or supported labour market; some therapeutic supports (including behaviour support); and help with household tasks to allow you maintain your home environment; and more.

You may not feel that you have a “disability” that is “significant” and “likely to be permanent or lifelong”, and indeed that perspective does not fit with most survivors’ views of recovery from complex trauma. Bear in mind that these are just terms used by the NDIS, and that words do not need to define you.

With an NDIS plan, however, you can choose the services that will support you to live a meaningful life, which fits with your definition of recovery.

The REIMAGINE TODAY website is a good place to start for an introduction to the NDIS and its eligibility criteria; an explanation of the nature and evidence required for psychosocial disabilities; and describing the application process for accessing the NDIS in 6 Steps to people living with mental health conditions.

Your service providers do not need to be registered with the NDIS to be able to provide a service to you under the NDIS. CLICK HERE for an explaination of what that means and what the implications are.

Also, if you don’t want to work through an agency to source a support worker that meets your needs, you may find it helpful to post a job description/request on the WA FAMILIES AND SUPPORT WORKERS JOB NETWORK FACEBOOK PAGE.

CLICK HERE for more information about how the NDIS Planning Service works

If your condition is a result of a criminal act in WA, you may be entitled to Criminal Injuries Compensation. This scheme is administrated by the WA Department of Justice. It is designed so that you can apply directly, and a great deal of information on this scheme, including application forms and application guides, is available HERE.

Maximum compensation amounts are dependent on the date of the incident/s. If you prefer the support of a legal expert to assist in considering your eligibility and with the application process, you should be aware that there is nothing built into this scheme to cover legal costs, therefore these costs will need to be deducted from what you are awarded. You may be eligible for support from a free legal service like a COMMUNITY LEGAL CENTRE, LEGAL AID, or ABORIGINAL LEGAL SERVICE OF WA. If you have not done so already, you MAY be required to report the incidents to the WA POLICE. Currently, fully completed CIC applications are taking around 2 years to be assessed.

If your condition is a result of childhood sexual abuse in an institutional context, you may be eligible for compensation under the National Redress Scheme. This scheme is administrated by the Commonwealth Government and compensation payments are funded by the liable institution. It is designed so that you can apply directly, and there is a great deal of information on the scheme including which institutions have opted in, eligibility, application forms and guidelines on their website HERE.

If you prefer the support of a legal expert in considering your eligibility and with the application process, you should be aware that there is nothing built into this scheme to cover legal costs, therefore these costs will need to be deducted from what you are awarded. You may be eligible for support from a free legal service like a COMMUNITY LEGAL CENTRE, LEGAL AID, or ABORIGINAL LEGAL SERVICE OF WA. In addition, there are some excellent FREE services who specialise in NRS applications, particularly KNOWMORE. If you have previously received other compensation for this abuse, it will have compound interest applied and be deducted from your award.

You should understand that by accepting an NRS offer of compensation, you will be required to sign a deed relinquishing your right to pursue further compensation from the institution/s through other avenues.

Currently, fully completed NRS applications are taking around 1 year to be assessed.

Legal reform in WA (as of 1 July 2018) means that survivors of childhood sexual abuse are no longer statute barred via time limitations from pursuing compensation through the courts from liable parties (institutions and individuals). At this point, the reform does NOT apply to survivors of other forms of abuse.

Although it is a court process, it is extremely unlikely that you will be required to give evidence in a courtroom setting.

You should be able to receive cost-free or obligation-free advice from a reputable personal injury law firm with regard to your potential claim. WA firms are subject to more stringent legislation and guidelines around costs than firms operating out of some other states.

If you have already received an award under the National Redress Scheme, you will have signed a deed relinquishing the institution from further compensation claims.

Currently, to progress a civil claim to the point of a potential advance payment for psychological services or to full settlement, can take 1-3 years or longer.

You can receive free or low-cost services and support for any mental health condition for you or your family, if you are a current or former member of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) (including reservists) and you have had at least one day of continuous full-time service.

There is no need to establish that your difficulties were caused by your service.

More information on the options that are available to support your mental health and wellbeing, and how to access services, is available from the DVA WEBSITE

People with a history of complex trauma (which is also sometimes called Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or C-PTSD) are sometimes more susceptible to developing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) after experiencing or witnessing a single traumatic event later in life.

If such a traumatic event occurs while you are working or acting in the scope of your employment, treatment for your PTSD symptoms may be covered by workers’ compensation.

Also, if you could convincingly demonstrate that your symptoms of complex trauma got aggravated, accelerated, exacerbated, or deteriorated AND that work was a significant contributing factor to that, then your pre-existing C-PTSD symptoms may also be covered by Workers Compensation.

A mental health condition is no less serious than a physical injury and must be addressed in the same manner. Psychological injury or mental injury can include a whole range of difficulties that all interfere with your life, and significantly affect how you feel, think, behave and interact with others. This FACT SHEET covers a lot of questions about psychological injuries.

If you think you might have a psychological injury, please discuss this with your GP as soon as possible. Delaying seeking help can increase your symptoms of anxiety; make your treatment take longer; and also compromise your right to file a workers’ compensation claim.

If a workers compensation claim is approved, you may be compensated for lost wages, medical expenses, and associated costs while you are unable to work; and eligible for targeted trauma treatment for this most recent condition (which may directly or indirectly also benefit your longer-term complex-trauma difficulties).

The CLINICAL FRAMEWORK FOR THE DELIVERY OF HEALTH SERVICES (Clinical Framework) is an evidence-based guide used by WorkCover to support health-care practitioners delivering services to people with compensable injuries.

It outlines five principles shown to deliver optimal recovery and return to work outcomes for those who qualify for workers compensation. You may want to keyword search this document (try ‘psychol’ or a variation of that) to see how it may apply to your circumstances.

Based on these principles, your treatment with a trauma specialist would need to demonstrate:

  1. How the effectiveness of your treatment is measured and demonstrated
  2. How a biopsychosocial approach was adopted for your treatment
  3. How you are being empowered to manage your injury
  4. Which goals were implemented to focus on optimising function, participation, and return to work
  5. How your treatment is based on best available research evidence.

Contact WorkCover WA to see how to access services and what you are entitled to:
Phone 1300 794 744 (toll free) or call (08) 9388 5555
WORKCOVER WEBSITE

There are very limited circumstances under which you may be able to access your superannuation early. This allows people with an acute or chronic mental illness to withdraw a limited amount of their super for unpaid expenses, if they have no other means of paying for the expense. Your doctor and/or treating clinician will be required to substantiate the claim that your condition is acute or chronic, and/or that the treatment you require is not readily available in the public health system. They will also be required to provide a quote for treatment over the course of the next 12 months.

Be aware that the super you withdraw is paid and taxed as a normal super lump sum.

You may find THIS LINK a helpful starting point to navigate this process.



     




× 21st August 2020
Please be aware that the COTWA Directory is a resource in development. More trauma-trained therapists will be added in the coming months as they go through the time consuming processes to demonstrate their trauma treatment experience and skills, and be approved for listing on the Directory. We estimate there are more than 40 trauma-trained therapists in the Perth Metro Area, and at least another 10 in Regional WA, and it will take some time for COTWA to connect with them all. Please do check back regularly to find a suitable therapist near you.


About the Directory

The COTWA Spatial Directory is different from all other mental-health service directories:

  • It has been designed with the input of survivors to be both trauma-informed in its design, and meeting the needs that survivors have indicated they seek when choosing a trauma therapist
  • Practitioners approved for inclusion here are not self-assessed psychotherapists claiming expertise in complex trauma
  • The training and expertise of every clinician have been independently assessed and verified by Blue Knot Foundation, Australia’s National Centre of Excellence for complex trauma
  • Referrers and survivors can trust that clinicians listed here are trauma-informed, competent, and experienced clinicians who meet best-practice guidelines for evidence-based treatments in trauma-specific clinical expertise
  • Every clinician on this Directory has moved away from asking, “What’s wrong with you?” Instead, we ask, “What’s happened to you?”

Many health and mental-health professionals practising today have not received any training to screen for, recognise, or treat complex trauma.

A recent study by Wilgus and Brand et al (2015) reviewed the coverage of child maltreatment in ten of the most commonly used abnormal psychology textbooks at the time, and found that most of these lacked key information about complex childhood trauma! Also, the information in many of these textbooks tended to be overly focused on controversies rather than on accurately representing current scientific knowledge.

As such, many health practitioners do not recognise that the source of many people’s presenting difficulty may stem from a prolonged exposure to a traumatic environment or a difficult childhood.

In fact, it is estimated that someone with a dissociative disorder spends, on average, seven years in the health system before getting an accurate diagnosis. This is true despite research now suggesting that the majority of psychiatric in-patients and out-patients, as well as the overwhelming majority of incarcerated people (and this is even more true for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders than any other group), have a history of complex trauma.

So, when it comes to getting helpful treatment to deal with a history of complex trauma, it can be hard to know where to go for treatment.

To help those living with complex trauma, their loved ones, and referring health professionals find appropriately qualified clinicians with experience in diagnosing and/or treating complex trauma, COTWA has developed a spatial directory of trauma-trained professionals in Western Australia – all of whom have gone above and beyond their basic tertiary education to become trauma-trained.

Our aim is to support new and experienced service providers across Western Australia in ways that keep this database growing for many years to come, and to develop it into an invaluable resource for everyone in Western Australia.

Complex Trauma WA (COTWA), with financial support from angelhands Inc, aims to provide a directory of qualified, experienced trauma-trained practitioners in Western Australia, so those with a lived experience of complex trauma seeking treatment have the best chance of finding appropriate treatment.

To this end, COTWA, in collaboration with Australia’s National Centre of Excellence for Complex Trauma, the Blue Knot Foundation, established an independent formalised accreditation process to assess the trauma-specific expertise of local service providers who work with complex trauma. Every clinician listed on the COTWA Directory passed through this rigorous vetting process, so you can be sure that they meet internationally accepted best-practice standards for trauma-specific skills in treating adults, children, or families who have a lived experience of complex trauma.

Our directory is designed to share the kind of information that survivors have indicated they would appreciate, to help them, their loved ones, or referring health-professionals to make informed and empowered choices about seeking local and/or accessible trauma treatment services best suited for their needs and preferences.

Only professionally registered clinicians with industry-standard training in trauma-specific treatments, and who have been independently assessed to have substantial experience in working with traumatised people, have been listed in the COTWA Directory.

Every clinician listed:

  • Is a Clinical Member of COTWA, and hence meets internationally accepted best-practice standards for trauma-specific skills in treating adults, children, or families who have a lived experience of complex trauma:
  • Holds a current unrestricted practicing certificate with an eligible Australian professional regulatory body for their discipline, at the level of full membership.
  • Has been thoroughly assessed to possess the required knowledge-base and skill-set required for trauma-informed practice
  • Has a minimum of three years full-time (or equivalent) professional experience working as trauma-specific therapists in direct clinical service delivery with survivors
  • Has provided a written references from two colleagues (one of whom must be a clinical supervisor) who vouched for their clinical expertise as trauma-trained practitioner.
    For this process, referees are asked to provide information on how long they’ve known the clinician and in what context; how regularly they had contact with the clinician to get an informed view of their work; and also to comment on what they know about the clinician’s complex-trauma case load; and whether they would, based on their experience of the clinician and their work, recommend that person as a competent trauma-informed service provider.
  • And finally, has had to demonstrate their knowledge and training in trauma-informed practice applicable for supporting people with complex trauma by:
    • Listing detailed information on the relevant professional development undertaken in the past five years, that is specific to the treatment of people with a history of complex trauma.
    • Specifying which trauma-specific treatment modalities they use, and what training at what level they have received in those modalities.
    • Describing the general therapeutic approach they use when working with people with a lived experience of complex trauma.
      They are also required to specifically reference how they incorporate the Blue Knot Foundation’s Practice Guidelines for Treatment of Complex Trauma and Trauma Informed Care and Service Delivery’, with practical examples of how the core trauma-informed principles of safety, trustworthiness, collaboration, empowerment, choice, and respect for cultural and other forms of diversity are implemented in their trauma-specific clinical work.
    • Convincingly demonstrating that they offer person-centred and tailor-made treatments that caters to every individual’s unique needs; while simultaneously heeding the distinctive features, coping strategies, and challenges of which therapists need to take account when working with trauma that is interpersonally generated (insofar as it is distinct from other types of trauma, with which it may co-exist)

In other words, you can rest assured that clinicians who met the stringent criteria required for listing on the COTWA directory, have dedicated a significant proportion of their professional life to doing what they can to help those with a lived experience heal. They have also gone through a pretty time-consuming effort to provide extensive information in response to every application question, because they too support people with a lived experience and their loved ones being in a position to make informed choices when it comes to finding a trauma-trained practitioner.

DISCLAIMER: It is important to note that whilst every effort is made to identify those practitioners who meet our requirements for listing on the spatial directory, it is not possible to guarantee that claims of treatment competence is consistently adhered to. As such, COTWA cannot be held responsible for the outcome of the service provided by any listed practitioner or service.


For those requiring urgent assistance, please see the EMERGENCY NUMBERS on our Home page.

We invite you to inform us of your experience with any listed service, or to make any suggestions regarding the information provided in the directory by getting in touch via the Contact Us form in the website footer.


The services listed in the COTWA directory reflects the range of presenting needs that people with a history of complex trauma commonly require when seeking treatment.

The Filter function allows you to limit the results based on pre-defined categories. just click on a link to see the filtered results

The Search function allows you to type any word, and all matching results will be returned. Type a postcode, suburb, therapy type, client type, clinician name, etc. Results will be filtered by your search term.

See the tabs below for pre-defined search terms to give you a starting point.

  • Private Practice
  • Government
  • Not for profit/Non-government organisation
  • Psychiatrist
  • Clinical Psychologist
  • Psychologist (General)
  • Clinical Neuropsychologist
  • Psychotherapist
  • Counsellor
  • Mental Health Nurse
  • Accredited Mental Health Social Worker
  • Clinical Social Worker
  • Occupational Therapist
  • General Practitioner
  • Other
  • Medicare
  • Private Health Insurance
  • Victims of Crime
  • WorkCover WA
  • Department of Veterans Affairs
  • National Disability Insurance Scheme
  • Medicare bulk billing (no gap)
  • Pro bono
  • Low cost sessions (under $35)
  • Reduced fees by negotiation
  • AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency)
  • PACFA (Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia)
  • APS (Australian Psychological Society)
  • AASW (Australian Association of Social Workers)
  • ACA (Australian Counselling Association)
  • In person
  • Online/Video conference
  • Telephone
  • Home visit
  • Outdoors

Hover on the therapy type for a description (Source: Psychology Today Therapy Types)

  • Eye-Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)
  • Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (TF-CBT)
  • Internal Family Systems (IFS)
  • Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy (DNMS)
  • Attachment-based Therapy
  • Sensorimotor Psychotherapy
  • Somatic Experiencing
  • Body-oriented psychotherapy
  • Trauma-based narrative therapy
  • Exposure therapy
  • Skills training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation
  • Stress Inoculation Training
  • Addiction and Trauma Recovery Integration Model (ATRIUM)
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
  • Psychodynamic psychotherapy
  • Humanistic psychotherapy
  • Feminist therapy
  • Creative therapies (e.g. sand play, art therapy)
  • Trauma-informed meditation
  • Attachment trauma
  • Domestic or family violence
  • Child sexual abuse
  • Incest
  • Childhood neglect
  • Systemic oppression
  • Cults or Organised abuse
  • Sexual Assault including Rape
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Alcohol and other drug addictions
  • Dissociation (including Dissociative Identity Disorder)
  • People who have experienced sexual abuse in institutions
  • Perpetrators of child abuse
  • Non-offending pedophiles
  • Homelessness
  • Poverty
  • ADHD
  • Autism
  • Other special-needs
  • Sexual intimacy issues
  • Financial Issues
  • Parenting issues
  • Harm reduction
  • Providing court support to victims and their family/friends
  • Writing court/forensic reports
  • Men
  • Women
  • Lesbian
  • Gay
  • Bisexual
  • Transgender
  • Transexual
  • Queer/Questioning
  • Intersex
  • Asexual
  • Couples
  • Families
  • Children (pre school)
  • Children (primary school)
  • Children (high school)
  • Young adults (age 16-25)
  • Older people (over age 65)
  • Groups
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Migrants
  • Refugees and asylum seekers
  • People with disabilities
  • Carers/Loved Ones
  • English
  • Afrikaans
  • Albanian
  • Arabic
  • Armenian
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  • Bengali
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  • Catalan
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Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

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Accepting Referrals:
YES
Clinical Psychologist
MA (Clinical Psychology),University of Pretoria, South Africa,2002 Academic Qualifications: ,,
Languages Spoken: English, Afrikaans
Douro House Psychological Health Care

(Private Practice)
9322 9666
0437883465
9322 9066
http://psychologistsinperth.com.au
Therapeutic Approaches
Eye-Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Internal Family Systems (IFS), Body-oriented psychotherapy, Psychodynamic psychotherapy
Can help with
Attachment trauma, Domestic or family violence, Child sexual abuse, Incest, Childhood neglect, Dissociation (including Dissociative Identity Disorder), Non-offending pedophiles, Parenting issues
Client Types
Men, Women, Lesbian, Gay, Migrants
Consultation Types
In person, Online/Video conference
Fees
Consultation Type Duration Standard Fee
Introductory meeting 30 mins $50
Standard consultation 50 mins $195
Trauma processing consultation 90 mins $240
Fee Reduction Options
Reduced fees by negotiation
Benefit Schemes
Medicare, Private Health Insurance
Business Hours
[{"day":"Monday","daylabel":"Mon","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"15:00","totimelabel":"3:00 pm"},{"day":"Tuesday","daylabel":"Tue","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"15:00","totimelabel":"3:00 pm"},{"day":"Wednesday","daylabel":"Wed","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"15:00","totimelabel":"3:00 pm"},{"day":"Thursday","daylabel":"Thu","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"18:00","totimelabel":"6:00 pm"}]
Public Transport Access
Train: 500m-1km
High frequency bus: <200m
Low frequency bus: 200m-500m
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Audio of spoken profile

Hello. My name is Sonia. I am a clinical psychologist in private practice; and I am also the coordinator of the Perth Complex Trauma Mental Health Professionals Network, and chairperson for Complex Trauma WA. I am passionate about doing whatever is within my power to protect children; and to help make sure that people who got hurt by the very people who should have protected them, get the kind of help they need when they ask for it.


I understand how hard it is to actually go to a therapist, so I thought I’d say a little bit about what you could expect at my practice if we were to work together. I also anticipate that you may need a few sessions before you can really get a feel for whether I might be the right kind of therapist for you or not, and that is perfectly fine with me.

I run a fairly standard clinical psychology practice, but most of my clients are adult survivors of complex trauma and I do what I can to adapt for what they need in order to best make use of psychotherapy. At our first meeting, I will listen closely to whatever you feel ready to tell me about, and I will probably ask a few questions about your family, and what it was like when you were at school, and what you found useful or not if you had sought help before. This helps us to determine where you’re at at the start of therapy, and how to prioritise what we focus on first. During the course of treatment, I will help you to make sense of what happened to you; teach you how your brain works and how it has done remarkable things to protect you; and introduce you to practical strategies to help you cope better with everyday life. Sometimes, during consultations, that means that people may walk around or lean against the consulting room door while we talk. Sometimes they play with kinetic sand or other sensory items (such as squishy stress balls, or an ice pack), or use of a weighted blanket, or just hold onto the massive Therapy Elephant until their nervous systems return to a manageable Window of Tolerance. Much of the work we do, will directly or indirectly target your attachment trauma too, to help improve your sense of your-Self and your capacity to recognise, tolerate, and manage your feelings in ways that better serve you. This can be helpful to re-establish your trust in yourself and in other people; and the way you manage your relationships in ways that serve you rather than undermine your needs. Whether in between, if you’re up for it, or only when you feel better equipped to do so, we process traumatic experiences in ways that are best indicated for your needs.

I love my work, and I feel privileged to work with the people I do. I have the utmost respect for the tremendous courage, tenacity, and resourcefulness of every survivor of childhood complex trauma, irrespective of what you’ve had to do to survive. You can trust that I do what I need to do to look after myself too, so that you don’t have to, and so that I can be a reliable resource for you on your healing journey.

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Front of the Building
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Reception Area
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Waiting Room
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Treatment Room
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Interesting Feature
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Out the Window
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Therapy Animal
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Accepting Referrals:
IT DEPENDS (please contact practice)
Clinical Psychologist
Doctor of Psychology (Clinical),University of Western Australia,2013 Academic Qualifications: Bachelor of Arts (Honours)(Psychology),University of Western Australia,2010
Languages Spoken: English
South West Wellbeing Centre

(Private Practice)
08 9791 9955
0411 138 036
08 9791 9958
http://www.swwellbeing.com.au/
Therapeutic Approaches
Eye-Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), Exposure therapy, Other
Can help with
Attachment trauma, Domestic or family violence, Child sexual abuse, Incest, Childhood neglect, Sexual Assault including Rape, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Alcohol and other drug addictions, Dissociation (including Dissociative Identity Disorder), People who have experienced sexual abuse in institutions, Homelessness, Poverty, ADHD, Autism, Other special-needs, Financial Issues, Parenting issues, Harm reduction
Client Types
Men, Women, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Children (high school), Young adults (age 16-25), Older people (over age 65), Groups, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Migrants, Refugees and asylum seekers, People with disabilities, Carers/Loved Ones
Consultation Types
In person, Online/Video conference, Telephone
Fees
Consultation Type Duration Standard Fee
Standard Consultation 50 minutes $240
EMDR Trauma Processing Session 90 minutes $360
Fee Reduction Options
Reduced fees by negotiation
Benefit Schemes
Medicare, Private Health Insurance, WorkCover WA, Department of Veterans Affairs
Business Hours
[{"day":"Monday","daylabel":"Mon","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"16:00","totimelabel":"4:00 pm"},{"day":"Tuesday","daylabel":"Tue","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"16:00","totimelabel":"4:00 pm"},{"day":"Wednesday","daylabel":"Wed","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"16:00","totimelabel":"4:00 pm"},{"day":"Thursday","daylabel":"Thu","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"16:00","totimelabel":"4:00 pm"}]
Public Transport Access
Train: >1km
High frequency bus: >1km
Low frequency bus: <200m
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My name is Dr. Stephanie Marie Jones, my pronouns are she/her, and I am a clinical psychologist. I completed my clinical doctorate of psychology at the University of Western Australia in 2013, after which I worked for two years with people facing barriers to employment. I then spent two years in private practice in Joondalup, before moving down to Bunbury, where I have been at the South West Wellbeing Centre ever since.

I have enjoyed working with clients with complex trauma throughout my career, and over the years I have expanded my skill set to enable me to assist these clients more effectively. I particularly enjoy working with clients experiencing voice hearing and dissociation, and honouring the important purposes that these phenomena serve. I welcome clients of diverse gender and sexuality, neurodiverse clients and those on the autism spectrum, and clients of all cultural, linguistic, and religious backgrounds.

In my spare time I enjoy digital painting, growing fruits and vegetables, and table-top roleplaying games such as Dungeons and Dragons.

Photo of the front of the building
Front of the Building
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Reception Area
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Waiting Room
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Treatment Room
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Interesting Feature
Photo looking out the window
Out the Window
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Therapy Animal
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Accepting Referrals:
IT DEPENDS (please contact practice)
Clinical Psychologist
Masters in Clinical Psychology,ISPA,1999
Languages Spoken: English, Portuguese
B.Minded Psychology Pty Ltd

(Private Practice)
0411811535
https://bminded.com.au/
Therapeutic Approaches
Eye-Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (TF-CBT), Skills training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation
Can help with
Domestic or family violence, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Parenting issues
Client Types
Men, Women, Children (primary school), Children (high school), Young adults (age 16-25), Older people (over age 65), Migrants, Refugees and asylum seekers
Consultation Types
In person, Online/Video conference, Telephone, Home visit, Outdoors
Fees
Consultation Type Duration Standard Fee
standard consultation +50min 190
Fee Reduction Options
Medicare bulk billing (no gap), Reduced fees by negotiation
Benefit Schemes
Medicare, Private Health Insurance
Business Hours
[{"day":"Monday","daylabel":"Mon","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Tuesday","daylabel":"Tue","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Wednesday","daylabel":"Wed","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Thursday","daylabel":"Thu","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Friday","daylabel":"Fri","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"}]
Public Transport Access
Train: >1km
High frequency bus: 500m-1km
Low frequency bus: 500m-1km
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Video of spoken profile

Audio of spoken profile

Ana Santos is a registered clinical psychologist in private practice. She has practiced, trained in, and managed Trauma and Psychological First Aid with the United Nations services in Kosovo and East-Timor, Portuguese Red Cross, fire-fighters, police forces, correctional services, as well as in private-practice contexts. Ana has extensive experience working with diverse populations across the life span. She has facilitated group workshops across Europe, Africa, and Australia.

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Front of the Building
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Reception Area
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Waiting Room
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Treatment Room
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Interesting Feature
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Out the Window
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Therapy Animal
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Accepting Referrals:
IT DEPENDS (please contact practice)
Psychotherapist
Adv Diploma of Psychotherapy,Churchill Clinic,2000
Languages Spoken: English
Diana Phillips Psychotherapy

(Private Practice)
0434058338
https://bunburypsychotherapy.com.au/
Therapeutic Approaches
Psychodynamic psychotherapy
Can help with
Attachment trauma, Domestic or family violence, Childhood neglect, Systemic oppression, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Alcohol and other drug addictions, Dissociation (including Dissociative Identity Disorder)
Client Types
Men, Women, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Transexual, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, Young adults (age 16-25), Older people (over age 65)
Consultation Types
In person, Online/Video conference
Fees
Consultation Type Duration Standard Fee
Initial consultation One Hour $150
Followup Consultation One Hour $150
Fee Reduction Options
Reduced fees by negotiation
Benefit Schemes
Private Health Insurance
Business Hours
[{"day":"Monday","daylabel":"Mon","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Tuesday","daylabel":"Tue","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Wednesday","daylabel":"Wed","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Thursday","daylabel":"Thu","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"},{"day":"Friday","daylabel":"Fri","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"17:00","totimelabel":"5:00 pm"}]
Public Transport Access
Train: >1km
High frequency bus: >1km
Low frequency bus: >1km
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Diana has lived in the Bunbury region since 1982, having been born and bred on a farm in the wheat belt of W.A. She did her secondary education at Albany HS and tertiary at UWA. Diana first worked as an educator in senior science and zoology in high schools and at UWA with undergraduate students, after which time she had, and raised, four children. Then for 23 years she managed her husband’s law practice and while doing this in 1995 began studying for her own career in analytical psychotherapy, graduating from Churchill clinic in 2000. She has been in private practice in Bunbury since 1996, first as a student under supervision, and then in her own right since 2000. Diana's practice is very mixed as practices are in country regions; from full on analytic work that extends over several years, to counselling and relationship issues, from teens through to seniors including various types and stages of mental illness, and all life stages and difficulties. Diana's is a very full practice within which she works in the psychodynamic way, dealing with the childhood issues and their impacts on future lives. Diana has worked with trauma sufferers for over 20 years, including many clients who have suffered complex trauma, with and the resulting dissociative disorders and DID. Diana cares deeply about complex trauma sufferers and is dedicated to helping them heal. Diana is a clinical member of PACFA, an accredited PACFA mental health practitioner and an accredited PACFA and AAoS clinical supervisor

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Front of the Building
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Reception Area
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Waiting Room
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Treatment Room
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Interesting Feature
Photo looking out the window
Out the Window
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Therapy Animal
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Accepting Referrals:
NO
Clinical Psychologist
Doctor of Philosophy (Clinical Psychology),Edith Cowan University,2015
Languages Spoken: English
Dr Esther Kint

(Private Practice)
Therapeutic Approaches
Eye-Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (TF-CBT), Exposure therapy, Skills training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Psychodynamic psychotherapy
Can help with
Attachment trauma, Domestic or family violence, Incest, Alcohol and other drug addictions, Dissociation (including Dissociative Identity Disorder), People who have experienced sexual abuse in institutions, Sexual intimacy issues, Parenting issues, Writing court/forensic reports
Client Types
Men, Women, Couples, Children (high school), Young adults (age 16-25), Older people (over age 65), Groups, Migrants, People with disabilities
Consultation Types
In person, Online/Video conference, Telephone
Fees
Consultation Type Duration Standard Fee
Standard 50 mins $200
Fee Reduction Options
Reduced fees by negotiation
Benefit Schemes
Medicare, Private Health Insurance, WorkCover WA, Department of Veterans Affairs
Business Hours
[{"day":"Monday","daylabel":"Mon","fromtime":"10:00","fromtimelabel":"10:00 am","totime":"18:00","totimelabel":"6:00 pm"},{"day":"Tuesday","daylabel":"Tue","fromtime":"09:00","fromtimelabel":"9:00 am","totime":"15:00","totimelabel":"3:00 pm"},{"day":"Wednesday","daylabel":"Wed","fromtime":"10:00","fromtimelabel":"10:00 am","totime":"18:00","totimelabel":"6:00 pm"}]
Public Transport Access
Train: >1km
High frequency bus: 200m-500m
Low frequency bus: 200m-500m
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I am a registered Clinical Psychologist and have been working in Private Practice for 8 years now. I am self-employed and have a lovely bright and airy office in Como, with river glimpses. It is a warm and inviting space, and many of my client's comment on how "at home" they feel in this space.

My particular interest lies in treating trauma-related conditions (i.e. attachment difficulties, difficulties with self-regulation, difficulties in sustaining healthy relationships, PTSD, and BPD), and I draw on a range of treatment modalities including trauma focused-CBT, DBT, Schema Therapy, and EMDR. Each year, I attend ongoing professional development to enhance my skills and ensure I am equipped with the most up to date and evidence-based treatment approaches.

I pride myself on being a warm, authentic, and compassionate therapist, who focuses on identifying my client's strengths, rather than focusing solely on the problem itself. My aim is to create a relaxed and supportive therapeutic environment, that encourages client's to feel safe to explore their presiding difficulties at their own pace.

Photo of the front of the building
Front of the Building
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Reception Area
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Waiting Room
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Treatment Room
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Interesting Feature
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Therapy Animal
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