Please find below a list of our most Frequently Asked Questions, and their answers. If your question is not shown below, feel free to contact us today for more information.
- Current Clients
- Funding and Rebates
- National Disability Insurance Scheme
- New Clients
- Services and General Information
Occupational Therapy is all about optimising independence and participation in daily activities (or “occupations”). The definition of “occupations” is different for children, in that their daily activities mostly include play, self care, and participation within the educational setting. Therefore, as paediatric OTs, we work with you and your child to optimise participation in activities of daily living wherever your child might be experiencing challenges.
Ultimately this is up to the family and what challenges you (or your child) are experiencing. If your child is having difficulty completing self care tasks, participating in school, making or maintaining friendships, or regulating emotions, and these challenges are impacting negatively on your child or family, then it may be worth getting some advice and assistance from an occupational therapist. It’s important to be aware that even within paediatrics, there are different areas (e.g. mental health, physical impairment, equipment prescription, and home modifications) and therefore not all paediatric OTs will be able to help with all your goal areas. If you are unsure of what Kid Link can assist with, please give our Family Liaison Team a call.
At Kid Link, we see children and adolescents aged 12 months to 18 years. We have a special interest in working with children and adolescents experiencing social, emotional, or regulation challenges. We have experience in early intervention, particularly in assisting parents of young children (up to age 7) to manage developmental concerns including difficult behaviours or sensory challenges. We can also assist in addressing goals related to your child’s executive functioning, such as their organisation, sustained attention, and time management skills. We also see many children with motor planning/coordination challenges, or fine motor challenges (particularly in relation to handwriting). Unfortunately our experience and scope of practice and experience does not include complex physical or intellectual disabilities, equipment prescription, assistive technology, or violent behaviours for over 7s. We also have reduced access in terms of our old building, so if you have mobility concerns, please call our Family Liaison Team and we will be able to talk through your requirements to see where we might be able to assist. Please also call if you need further information about our service and what we offer as a practice.
Some of the programs, approaches and methodologies that we may use or have attended specific training in include but are not limited to: Social Thinking™, Play based/child lead therapy, Emotional Regulation Programs (e.g. Zones of Regulation™), Task analysis and skills training, Cognitive Orientation to Occupational Performance (CO-OP) approach, Social Stories, Parent education and training (including implementation of Positive Behaviour Supports), evidence informed psychological approaches (eg. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy), collaborative problem solving, SOS approach to feeding. We also offer group based therapy (e.g. mealtime support, handwriting, social skills, executive functioning, motor skills, emotional regulation, school readiness).
We are often asked if we offer Therapeutic Listening® , Ayres Sensory Integration®, or the Wilbarger Brushing Protocol. We do not offer these programs or similar due to limited current evidence as to the long term efficacy or transferability of some of these programs. However, we acknowledge some families report excellent anecdotal evidence using these programs, and we therefore encourage families to do their own research and access therapies that suit their individual needs and situation. In regards to sensory challenges, at Kid Link we will assess your child’s needs and work with you to identify areas where sensory processing is impacting on participation. We then come up with individualised, and where possible evidence informed, strategies to address these challenges.
Family‐centred practice is when professionals and families work as equal partners in supporting the learning and development of the child. Essentially it means we are lead by you and what you and your family need assistance with. While we will work with you to help you identify and assess areas of challenge and suggest strategies, we rely on active parent involvement, communication, and collaboration within your child’s therapy program.
We are a family centred practice so generally we start with clinic based therapy sessions so that the parent/carer can be actively involved. We have some limited capacity for school visits depending on the goals, therapy plan, location and school involvement. Home visits are usually only for once off consultations regarding a specific area of challenge that may need to be observed. If you would like a home or educational visit, please talk to your OT so they can work with you to decide if it will be suitable.
Yes. We run intensive group programs (usually 3-5 sessions per group) during school holidays, and are also starting to run some specific groups during the school term. Our groups often focus on areas including: social skills, handwriting, motor-skill development, school readiness, and emotional regulation skills.
We have one therapist who is currently working on a Saturday morning and running some small pilot group programs. We are not currently taking on anymore families for Saturday appointments. If your only availability is Saturdays, it is very unlikely we will be able to accommodate this request and we suggest contacting some other practices who provide Saturday sessions.
Yes. Where an appointment is cancelled ‘without notice’ (after 3pm the day before the scheduled service begins) or there is a ‘no show’, 90% of the full session fee will be charged. If a family cancels with notice (before 3pm the day before the scheduled service), no fee will be applied.
Our cancellation fee is essential to the sustainability of our practice. All Kid Link staff are permanent employees and paid regardless of whether people attend their session, so we rely on your understanding of why a cancellation fee is required. As we choose to offer and reserve a time for you, when you are unable to attend, the appointment usually remains empty. By letting us know before 3pm the day before, we have a couple of hours to plan alternatives and this also avoids your therapist preparing for the session unnecessarily.
Kid Link is a pay on the day clinic which means that for private (or NDIS self-managed) clients, you will be required to pay for session when you arrive for your appointment. For families who opt to have a service provided offsite (e.g. school, kinder, home) or outside of our reception hours (including Saturdays), we require families utilise our direct debit system (IntegraPay). Please note, we are only able to provide invoices or offer payment after the session for families who are NDIS plan managed or agency managed. This payment method, and associated administration costs, attract a higher fee (within the cap set by the NDIA). We know our payment terms may not suit all families, especially self managed clients who will be out of pocket for a couple of days while they submit their claim in the portal, so please be aware of our payment terms prior to booking an appointment.
We obviously want everyone to feel as though they have received a high standard of service at Kid Link and strive to avoid any official complaints altogether. However, in the event you wish to provide a suggestion or make a complaint, we urge you to communicate this with us as most things (as long as they fall within our scope of practice and policies) can be resolved if we are made aware. Feel free to talk to any staff member you feel comfortable with and where possible, they will try to address the problem straight away or direct you to the appropriate person. In the event you are not happy with the answer provided and wish to escalate the feedback or make a formal complaint, you can request a complaints form or contact Jackie (the director) via phone or email. Please see our website for the procedure.
In most cases, we do not start with a structured or standardised assessment. Being a family centred practice, we use the first intake appointment to gather information and help you work through your concerns to set goals and develop a plan. Standardised assessments can be very useful however are best interpreted within the context of you and your family’s individual circumstances. Following the intake, and with your permission, we may complete a formal assessment to obtain additional or baseline information. At Kid Link, we also use a lot of informal assessment and clinical observation to inform our therapy and recommendations. We are able to complete a once off formalised assessment if you would like,for example a handwriting or motor skills assessment. If you require a once off assessment and do not wish to access ongoing therapy, please call the Client Liaison Team and they will talk through your options and what might be the best service to book.
In short, no. We do receive referrals from different sources which may make your child eligible for some rebates or funding support, however you are very welcome to self refer.
The short answer is usually ‘Yes’. People often ask how long the waitlist is, however please be aware that the number of people in front of you is not a good indicator of waiting times as many families who are waiting have restricted availability. The waiting time depends on your availability and/or appointment preferences. For families who are able to be very flexible, the waiting time for a block of appointments can be quite short. Waiting times for once off assessments or consultations are also less than those waiting for a term of appointments/ongoing sessions. As families can change appointments, or achieve their goals and finish up at any time, we are unable to give an exact waiting time. For this reason, we often suggest going on the waiting list of other providers too, so you have the option to take an earlier appointment elsewhere should one open up. We welcome waiting list families to call and touch base to see how things are looking in terms of appointment openings.
If you call our Family Liaison Team, they will step you through the process and either book you in if there is an opening, or where there is a wait, get all your details so your booking can be fast-tracked when a spot opens up. We offer fortnightly appointments with times being booked on a term by term basis. We aim to offer the same time ongoing, however this is subject to ongoing room and therapist availability.
Once your child has been booked in for the intake appointment, you will be emailed our Service Agreement that can be done in your own time and signed electronically. You will receive a signed copy back via email for your records. This will save you (and the OT) time going over too much background information during the appointment. You will receive an appointment reminder via text and email 2 days before the appointment. Please arrive 10 minutes early for your first appointment and be sure to bring any relevant paperwork or plans with you. These need to be given our Family Liaison Team before your appointment or we will not be able to honour them.
Your OT will come down to meet you in the waiting room and take you through to your appointment. In our first session we will focus on gathering information from the family which informs our family-centered goals, which we then create a therapy plan from. The intake session takes an hour. Please note that the therapist will endeavour to engage with your child as well as completing the notes, however given how complex this process can be, most of the interaction will be between the parent and the OT. The child will be provided with things to do where possible or you might like to bring a preferred activity for them to engage in during this session. In some specific circumstances, you may like to attend without your child if you feel the discussion may include sensitive information or if your child is unlikely to be able to entertain themselves without significant 1:1 support for an hour.
We will complete summary notes following the intake appointment, which you will receive within 7 business days. The note includes our discussion, goals, and future plan for OT. If we have permission, we sometimes like to touch base with other members of your child’s support team (e.g paediatrician, speech therapist, teacher). If anything changes or needs to be amended (e.g. goals, plan for therapy, missed information), we encourage you to let your OT know as soon as possible so amendments can be made prior to you starting therapy.
Following the intake appointment, your OT will form a plan based on your discussion and goals. A therapy session will almost always include a catch up with yourself (or attending carer) to see how things are going and provide any relevant education or strategies. This collaborative and coaching part of sessions is central to family centred practice and achievement of outcomes. Very few “wins” occur solely within therapy walls without family follow through in other environments. Effective follow through and teamwork requires a thorough and deep understanding of therapy activities and suggestions.
We firmly believe that the best part of Kid Link is our team members. We prioritise a happy and supportive culture, extensive training, and only having team members with high interpersonal skills. This means that we hope all our families can confidently form rapport and a high level of trust in their therapist quickly. Despite this, we know that occasionally a family or child may not “click” with an OT. We don’t take this personally and want families to get the most out of therapy. The OTs on our team are well aware that they need a family to trust them before they can do their job effectively. Please feel free to be direct with your OT if you are not happy about something, or, where you don’t feel comfortable doing this, please email or chat to the Client Liaison Team at reception, who will gladly discuss other options and availability with a different OT.
We are a family centered practice, and our focus is on upskilling the family to meet their goals. If yourself and therapist determine your child will benefit from ongoing OT, frequency will be recommended. We often see our families on a fortnightly basis. We love to give our families consistency if we can, so your child will have the same day/time for the term. Bookings are made term-by-term, and we do our best to accommodate preferences. However, some families may not require fortnightly frequency and you are welcome to ‘book as you go’ into cancellation spots. Our ultimate aim is for your child not to need to access OT, so we will only ever recommend that you come for the sessions you feel you need.
It’s very challenging to be able to say “your child will need ___ number of sessions”. Access to private therapy is really decided by the family. Some opt to utilise a few sessions and focus on parent education so they can continue on their own, others opt to come for a number of years addressing lots of goal areas and adding more goals as their child’s circumstances and skills change. There are so many factors which impact on outcomes and how long the course of treatment will be. The short answer is that the number of sessions is up to the family. If you tell us what works for you and what you want out of therapy, we will do our best to tailor our program to suit you and give you an estimate of what to expect given what you are wanting to achieve.
When we are fully booked, there is not usually another appointment time to change to unless another family finishes up or also changes appointment time. We do however record any requests and current clients are prioritised for requested times when they become available. Most changes, if possible, occur at the start of a new term.
We rely heavily on family involvement and a team based approach, so if you are feeling as though you are not getting what you need out of therapy, we always hope families will report this to their therapist during the “catch up” part of their session. This is the easiest way for the therapist to change things up or provide more support to ensure things are moving forward. We never take honest feedback personally. If this method of feedback is not appropriate given your situation or concerns, you can let the Client Liaison Team know in person or via phone or email and they can discuss options with you.
In most cases, the parent or carer will be required. The aim of therapy is to improve independence and functional outcomes in the child’s natural environments. Therefore concepts and strategies introduced within therapy require lots of practice and reinforcement outside of therapy. The best way for families to learn and understand how best to support their child to utilise and practice skills is to observe the therapy session and also receive some education and training themselves. Where parents are not in attendance, we require a high level of diligence on the families behalf to read the notes carefully, clarify any homework they have not understood, and communicate thoroughly via phone or email in between sessions.
We will always try our best to find an appropriate time to fit you in should you request this, however it is not always possible as it may rely on another family not utilising their appointment time. Please note that if you cancelled or did not attend your reserved appointment, a cancellation fee may still apply if you choose to book a second catch up appointment. This is always your choice. No fee applies where sufficient notice was provided. Please see our cancellation policy for more information.
Please call the clinic. If you can’t get through, please leave a voicemail. If you need to call over the weekend, please still leave a voicemail. If we are notified by 3pm the day before (even if it’s a weekend), there will be no fee.
We are able to see children at school, however we are primarily a clinic-based practice. We allocate one day per term to complete offsite visits as they can be so valuable in supporting consistency across environments. Please discuss the suitability of a school visit with your occupational therapist, and then ask our Family Liaison Team to place you on the waiting list.
Talk to your therapist to ensure that it is appropriate to your child’s goals and so the plan for the visit is clear for all parties. Following this, your OT will put your child on our waiting list. We have an allocated day once a term and also occasionally have other spots open up. Children are usually prioritised on a first come first serve basis so children who have been waiting the longest, will be booked first where possible. If this is something you would like to have, we suggest you mentioning it to your OT as soon as possible. This is also the case with attendance at school meetings.
We require a minimum of three (3) weeks notice to organise a report to be written. In some cases, this process may involve a face-to-face meeting with the parent/guardian and/or child, to gather any information we require. We then require additional time for the therapist to write the report with relevant recommendations. As all of our therapists are fully booked, we rely on cancelled appointments to find time to write a thorough report. We don’t believe in rushing or reducing content to have things done quickly as we know poor reports could impact on things such as funding provision. We thank you for understanding and want you to be aware that your therapist often receives several reports or assessment requests every week so we need to make sure we have a fair process for completion. Please note that once the report is complete, they will be released as soon as payment is received.
Call the Family Liaison Team and they will make your next session your discharge session and notify your therapist. You can also let your OT know that you would like to finish up and they will pass it on to the Family Liaison Team. We request 1 month’s notice so we have time to use your next session to complete a discharge session and for us to say our goodbyes. In your discharge session we will discuss what would be best to continue to work on at home and summarise what has been covered within OT during your time at Kid Link. You will get a written summary should you access therapy in the future (with us or another provider) and is also beneficial for the family to revisit concepts or suggestions quickly and easily when they want to refresh things they learnt in OT. This summary can also be provided to other stakeholders such as paediatricians, therapists, other family members or educators. There is no additional fee for this summary. In the event you opt out of a discharge session, we will make a note of this in our records. Should you request a summary or a copy of the notes at a later date, there will be an additional charge to compile this.
There are a few different rebate options that your child may be able to access. Some can be accessed through your GP (such as a Chronic Disease Management Plan) and some through your paediatrician (e.g. Helping Children With Autism plan). Some children may also be eligible for NDIS. If you are unsure of what you might be able to access, please call the Family Liaison Team and they can point you in the right direction.
We can only support goal areas that are directly related to an approved mental health diagnosis. Our therapy needs to involve focused psychology strategies (usually cognitive behavioural therapy informed). For more information, call our Family Liaison Team.
Appointment costs are paid in full by families at the time of payment. Once paid, we are able to issue Medicare rebates through our HICAPS machine in the clinic. You will need to provide your (and your child’s, if different) Medicare card, as well as a debit card to receive the rebate. If the HICAPS terminal is down and we are unable to process the claim in the clinic, we can provide you with the required plan details to claim the rebate directly through Medicare, should you choose to do so. Alternatively we are able to ‘back claim’ rebates, i.e. at your next session we can process multiple rebates (given the date of the plan is prior to the session you are hoping to claim).
We do not process private health insurance claims, however all the information you will need to claim a rebate is provided on your invoice/receipt which is sent to you via email.
Speak with your GP or paediatrician – they will be able to tell you if your child is eligible for any Medicare plans that offer a rebate, and they will be able to issue you a plan. (Please note: Medicare rebates do not cover the whole cost of the appointments – there will be out of pocket costs.)
Yes, Kid Link is registered for Early Childhood Supports and Therapeutic Supports which both fall under Improved Daily Living.
Kid Link can provide goal driven therapeutic supports with a focus on family education. Unfortunately we are not registered to prescribe equipment or assistive technology, or assist with any home modification goals. We are also not able to provide support with complex behaviours or behaviour support plans. Please feel free to give us a call to further clarify if we are the right fit for you and your child.
The main purpose of our service agreement is to provide families with our policies, procedures, and terms of service before they attend the clinic. We like to be as transparent as possible so by using Docusign, families can fill it in from home and have time to ask any questions before attending their next session. It gets all paperwork out of the way so when you come to Kid Link, the focus can be on your child and forming a relationship with your OT. It also provides families with the freedom and choice to give as much (or as little) information as they like prior to their OT session depending on their situation and goals for OT. Furthermore, we want to run a practice that always strives for a high level of compliance across all areas. We know compliance requirements often come with a lot of paperwork so we appreciate your understanding and cooperation. We always want you to understand what you are signing and be comfortable with what Kid Link is about, so please call if you have any questions or concerns as we are more than happy to help.
We are a pay on the day clinic. Our payment terms allow us to keep our fees as low as possible without compromising on service, resources, or staff. The NDIS has meant that families who are plan or agency managed cannot pay on the day. There is now significantly more administration time required to claim and/or follow up payments for clients who are NDIA or plan managed. For clients who pay on the day, no additional time is required to chase up or reconcile payments which saves time (and money). Because we offer a lower pay on the day rate, self managed families (who are also charged the lower rate), are also required to pay on the day of their service.
You are not required to provide us with the plan, however we do request you share the goals with us (even verbally) if you would like us to help you ensure that our therapy adheres to your plan. For families who wish to trust us with their plan information, we are more than happy to keep a copy of your plan on file and have an open discussion about how you might like to utilise some of the funds at Kid Link. We are not interested in spending or “holding” more than is requested and know priorities can change . Regardless of what information you decide to share with us, we hope we will be able to demonstrate through our actions that Kid Link is a practice of integrity and honesty. We are happy to amend or change an agreement at any time. We are a family centred practice and take this approach seriously.
We require a minimum of three (3) weeks notice to organise an NDIS report to be written. This involves a 1 hour face-to-face meeting with the parent/guardian to gather information and work together to outline your child’s progress, future needs, and goals, as well as 1 hour for the therapist to write the summary report and relevant recommendations based on the goals you discuss. We find this way of compiling reports reduces the time and cost of the report, and produces a high quality summary that we believe gives your child the best chance of receiving a new plan that meets their needs. As all of our therapists are fully booked, we rely on cancelled appointments to find time to write these thorough reports. We dont believe in rushing or reducing content to have things done quickly as we know poor reports could impact on your child’s plan. We thank you for understanding why we require this notice and want you to be aware that your therapist often receives several reports requests every week so we need to make sure we have a fair process for completion.
The Schedule of Supports completes the service agreement and is the financial table where you tell us what services you would like to access at Kid Link and for how long. We usually do a 12 monthly schedule as plans are usually 12 months and we like you to have your spot for as long as you need it. This means your OT can provide a rough outline of how long term goals will be achieved and what sessions will look like over the plan period. We can make changes or complete shorter agreements at more frequent intervals, however this involves completing an amendment with your OT in your session so the priorities and plan for OT can be adjusted as needed.
As a registered provider, Kid Link are able to provide services to Agency Managed families. This means that our Family Liaison team can access the portal and create a ‘service booking’. This service booking matches the ‘schedule of supports’ that is decided on by you (with the help of your OT). As you and your child attend sessions, they will claim the session fee from this service booking. As mentioned previously, amendments can be made at any time and funds can always be released from the service booking as your priorities change. We do need to create a service booking which will allocate your requested amount to the correct support category at Kid Link OT. If you want to make changes or release funding, please call reception and they will let your OT know that an amendment and adjustment of the plan needs to be completed at the next session. You are always in control of how your money is held and used.
NDIS has different types of service types that can be claimed for and are taken into account within your plan. These services include: Direct supports (face to face therapy with your child) and non-direct services (non-face-to-face supports such as phone calls or extended written summaries, provider travel, cancellations, reports). All of the services and costs will be discussed when completing your schedule of supports.
Telehealth may also be referred to as Teletherapy or Remote Therapy. Telehealth means providing therapy online using devices such as laptops, tablets, or smartphones. Instead of meeting in-person, your OT will send you a link via email and you will see them on screen for the duration of your session.
You will be invited to an online appointment via email. When you open the link at your scheduled appointment time, your OT will be waiting on screen, ready to carry out the therapy session. In some instances, your OT will ask you to have certain things printed or ready to utilise within the session. Most therapy approaches and services can still be utilised via Telehealth including assessment, skills training, cognitive and behavioral interventions, education, and coaching (see ‘what is parent coaching?’ for more information).
For younger children or children with higher support needs, therapy will be delivered by utilising parent coaching, or guiding the parent in how to work directly with their child. There are many ways that Telehealth can be utilised to achieve therapy outcomes. You and your OT will work together to find an approach that works for you and your child, that does not compromise therapy outcomes.
For older children who can manage technology themselves and are motivated to engage in therapy, they will be able to participate in Telehealth activities more independently in working towards their goals. Parents are still required to be present for all sessions so they can supervise their child, provide support where needed, and be able to facilitate practice and implementation of strategies between sessions.
For many families, Telehealth is not a ‘lesser than’ option, with evidence pointing to Telehealth being a comparable option for therapy.
In some situations, Telehealth is able to engage a child more successfully than clinic based sessions. Some of our older children find Telehealth is a great opportunity to practice independence, allowing them to take charge of their own therapy. Some sessions are also more beneficial via Telehealth as the OT can provide parents with strategies and activities to do in their natural environment. It is our goal to help families feel confident and competent, and Telehealth can effectively support this essential part of the therapy process.
You will need a strong internet connection and a device that can access Zoom (the program we utilise at Kid Link). This could be a tablet, laptop, desktop computer or, if there are no other options, a smart phone. In some instances we can offer coaching services over the phone (audio only) although we prefer to utilise video as well as audio where possible.
• Where possible, have the child and yourself set up at a table in a quiet area. For handwriting or fine motor activities, make sure the camera can see the child’s hands.
• Have any materials ready to go. Your OT will email through a list of items to print or gather from around the house if required.
• Have siblings set up with another activity where possible to reduce distractions for you and your child.
• Be prepared to be coached through the session and ask lots of questions. Our aim is for you to be able to practice and follow through confidently once the session is finished.
• For older children who can participate in activities independently, it’s still important you are present to provide supervision and understand the activities or concepts for practice in between sessions.
• As with clinic-based sessions, therapy involves collaboration, communication, and teamwork, so don’t be afraid to ask questions, provide honest feedback, and tell your OT what is or isn’t working for you as a family.
The “coach approach” or parent coaching has always been utilised as part of Kid Link’s Service Delivery Model. This approach is able to be successfully implemented within the clinic or via Telehealth. Using a coach approach means supporting parents in achieving goals for themselves and their children. It is a collaborative, problem solving approach capitalising on the family’s knowledge of their child and home situation, and the OT’s expertise. Parents are guided to identify and implement effective solutions for their family.