Clinical Psychologists work in a range of private and public health settings. Generally you will have more choice over the psychologist you see in private fee-paying clinic than in public clinics, which are free for NZ residents. You can ask your GP if the problems you are facing entitle you to a referral to a public service which may have clinical psychology staff.
There are several ways to find a clinical psychologist
Go to the Find a Clinical Psychologist link to find NZCCP members who work in your area. Talk to close family members and friends for their recommendations, especially if they have had a good experience with psychological therapy Ask your G.P. (or other health professional) for a referral. Tell the doctor what’s important to you in choosing a psychologist so he or she can make appropriate suggestions. Look in the phone book Yellow Pages for the listings of Psychologists – NZ Registered Ideally, you will end up with more than one lead. Call and request the opportunity, either by phone or in person, to ask the therapist some questions. You might want to inquire about his or her qualifications, approach to psychological therapy, and fees. Such a discussion should help you sort through your options and choose someone with whom you believe you might interact well. Remember that selecting a clinical psychologist is a highly personal matter – finding one that is right for you is important.
A clinical psychologist who is a member of the New Zealand College of Clinical Psychologists has the training and experience to provide a safe and quality service.
Most public health services in New Zealand employ clinical psychologists who you may be able to see if you are a client of that service. Talk to your general practitioner (GP) about referral to public services. It can be easier to see a clinical psychologist in private practice but there is a fee.
Only psychologists who are registered with the New Zealand Psychologists Board under Health Practitioners Competency Assurance Act 2003 (HPCA Act) and its subsequent amendments may call themselves a “Psychologist” or a “Registered Psychologist”. Visit the Psychologists Board website to search the database of Registered Psychologists in New Zealand
Only those psychologists who have completed appropriate qualifications in Clinical Psychology and registered in a Clinical Scope of practice may call themselves “Clinical Psychologist”.
It is not uncommon for some counsellors, psychotherapists, and psychologists to attempt to treat problems for which they have not been specifically-or adequately-trained. To be confident about their quality of care, consumers need to know what degree, what registration (if any!), and what training their psychologist or therapist has received. You should feel free to ask your psychologist (or other health professional) whether they are registered and what their qualifications are.