THE allocation of Medicare-subsidised psychological therapy sessions will be doubled for people living in lockdown areas for seven months from today.
The measure has been welcomed, but concerns remained about implementation and awareness less than 24-hours out.
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt announced a further 10 subsidised sessions for "people subject to public health orders restricting their movement" on Sunday.
It came as Victorians learned they would be living with more severe COVID-19 restrictions to curb a "second wave" of infections.
Murray Primary Health Network chief executive Matt Jones said practices would welcome the additional sessions.
"It's just they have to know about it," Mr Jones said.
He said Murray PHN had been making the information available to practices and clinicians in a variety of ways, in keeping with their communication preferences.
"It does tend to take a bit of time to wash through the system," Mr Jones said.
Bendigo Primary Care Centre general manager Dr Steve Cooper welcomed the health minister's announcement.
However, he said there seemed to be a lack of detail other than what was available on Mr Hunt's website.
The Department of Health said it had provided "initial information" to peak bodies.
Advance copies of information factsheets and Frequently Asked Questions would be made available to "key stakeholders" and published on the department's website from today.
The Department of Health said new, temporary Medicare Benefits Scheme item numbers would be available from today, with more information to be published online.
"The Department of Health has been working with Services Australia to put in place the required infrastructure within the Medicare System," a spokesperson said.
"It is anticipated that billing and claims processing will be fast-tracked and be available from mid-August."
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The additional sessions will be available until March 31, 2021.
People will have to have used all 10 of the Medicare-subsidised sessions available under a Mental Health Treatment Plan and had a review with their GP before accessing more.
A psychiatrist could also provide a referral.
People would be eligible to access psychological therapy services provided by clinical psychologists, as well as "focussed psychological strategies services" provided by GPs, psychologists, eligible social workers and occupational therapists.
Recipients would have to be in areas subject to to public health orders restricting their movement within the state or territory. The orders could be issued any time between July 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021.
People would also be eligible if they were required by public health orders to isolate or quarantine. These could include people who had tested positive for COVID-19 or returned travellers.