Psychologists, counsellors and social workers are trained to treat workers so they can achieve a safe and durable recovery at or return to work.
To deliver psychological and counselling treatment services to workers in the NSW workers compensation system you must be a psychologist, counsellor or social worker and you must be approved (issued a provider number) by us.
If you're a psychologist you must be registered with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).
If you’re a counsellor, to provide services in the NSW workers compensation system you must:
- be a full clinical member of the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia (PACFA), or
- a level three or four member of the Australian Counselling Association (ACA)
If you're a social worker, to provide services in the NSW workers compensation system you must be a mental health social worker accredited with the Australian Association of Social Workers.
A workers compensation guide for allied health practitioners provides essential information regarding the delivery of treatment services in the NSW workers compensation system. We also strongly recommend you view our 15 minute webinar on the Allied Health Practitioner Framework.
The workers compensation guidelines provides additional information on how the claims process works, and what type of payments and expenses may be available.
Please read this information on the Allied Health Recovery Request (AHRR) before you use this form for the first time. The AHRR has replaced the previous management plans. All SIRA approved psychologists, counsellors and social workers must submit an AHRR when seeking pre-approval for treatment services.
You might need to know about the certificate of capacity.
Did you know? Clinical Neuropsychologists assessing workers in the NSW workers compensation system do not require SIRA approval as they are not providing a treatment service.
Forms you might need
- Allied health recovery request (interactive version) is used to request treatment services
- Allied health recovery request (word version) if your computer can't open up the interactive version
- Application for SIRA workers compensation approval (interactive version)
- Application for SIRA workers compensation approval (static version) if you can't open the interactive version
Publications you might need
- Information on the Allied Health Recovery Request
- 2018 Psychology and Counselling Fees Order
- 2019 Psychology and Counselling Fees Order
- Guideline for approval of treating allied health practitioners
- Workers compensation guidelines
- Workers compensation guide for allied health practitioners
Fees and invoicing
Get treatment approval first
If the insurer denies liability, or declines a treatment request because it does not meet 'reasonably necessary' criteria, your patient is personally responsible for payment of accounts.
So before treating your patient please confirm they have submitted a workers compensation claim, and that you have approval from the insurer to start treatment.
The fees orders provide a maximum fee for services provided to a worker. You can not exceed the maximum fees stated in the Fees Order.
All fees you can charge are listed in the relevant fee order below:
- worker's first and last name, and claim number
- payee details
- name of the medical practitioner or service provider who provided the service
- SIRA workers compensation approval number or medical practitioner's Health Insurance Commission provider number (where applicable)
- date of service
- SIRA workers compensation payment classification code or AMA item number where applicable. Refer to either the claims technical manual for:
- service cost for each SIRA workers compensation payment classification code or AMA item number and service duration (if applicable)
- date of invoice (must be on the day of or after last date of service listed on the invoice)
To prevent delays in payment, these details will need to be provided on all invoices.
Invoices should be submitted within 30 calendar days of the service being provided.
Send your invoices to the worker’s insurer.
Do I need a SIRA provider number?
Yes. If you're a psychologist, counsellor or social worker you must have a SIRA provider number to provide treatment services to workers in the NSW workers compensation system.
Did you know? All allied health practitioners formerly approved by WorkCover NSW are now deemed to be approved by SIRA. Their provider number remains the same.
The SIRA provider number is specific to the allied health practitioner and must be provided on all tax invoices and requests to the insurer. Services must not be delivered by any other person using the allied health practitioner's provider number.
You are not required to obtain a new provider number for each different location where you deliver services or if you change your employment. However, you must notify SIRA of any change in your contact details within 14 days by email to email@example.com.
How do I get a SIRA provider number?
Review the guideline for approval of treating allied health practitioners and then complete the application form
If you meet the appropriate qualifications and requirements, you must satisfactorily complete the three-part allied health practitioner online training course. This is to ensure all practitioners working within the NSW workers compensation system are:
- appropriately skilled to help workers achieve a safe and durable recovery at/return to work, and
- aware of requirements for the delivery of services in the system.
The online training program is administered by the Personal Injury Education Foundation (PIEF) and costs $321 (GST-exempt).
Please note: you must obtain confirmation from us that your SIRA provider number is active before delivering treatment services.
What about practitioners approved prior to 1 April 2015?
These practitioners completed the previous mandatory face to face training and obtained WorkCover approval. If this is you you are not required to undertake any online training at this stage. We do however encourage you to do the training as it provides practical information regarding the delivery of services in the current NSW workers compensation system, which has changed significantly since the face to face training was conducted.
Independent consultants (peer reviews)
Independent consultants are approved by us to provide independent peer review of, and advice, to allied health practitioners regarding injury management.
If you would like the assistance of an independent consultant visit independent consultants.
Where required, you must participate in a review by an independent consultant as outlined in the guideline for approval of treating allied health practitioners.
You can find a workers compensation provider/assessor here.