Online Cognitive Behavioural Therapy offered via THIS WAY UP

What is cognitive behavioural therapy?

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a treatment approach for a range of mental and emotional health issues, including anxiety and depression. This type of therapy explores the relationship between thoughts, feelings and behaviours. It aims to identify and challenge unhelpful thoughts that interfere in daily life, based on the understanding that pursuing these thoughts are a habit that, like any other habit, can be broken.  

CBT provides a person with practical strategies designed to bring about positive changes in their life.

A review of various therapy types conducted by the Australian Psychological Society (2010)2 identified CBT as one of several evidence-based psychological interventions recommended for the effective treatment of certain mental health conditions affecting adults, adolescents and children.

What is online cognitive behavioural therapy?

iCBT or online CBT is CBT that is delivered via the internet. The online CBT courses delivered by THIS WAY UP have been developed by a team of psychiatrists and clinical psychologists. They offer a range of online, self-paced CBT courses, including courses specific to anxiety and depression, and these courses have the same content as you’d typically experience in therapy with a clinician (face-to-face).

The courses are self-paced, and can be accessed over a 3-month period via the THIS WAY UP website.

Who are This Way Up?

THIS WAY UP (TWU) is part of the Clinical Research Unit for Anxiety and Depression (CRUfAD). It’s a joint facility of St Vincent’s Hospital and the University of New South Wales that was established to reduce the impact of anxiety and depressive disorders on individuals.

The not-for-profit initiative was jointly designed and developed by Professor Gavin Andrews and his team of psychiatrists and clinical psychologists at St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney and is sponsored by the Australian Government Department of Health and the Clinical Research Unit for Anxiety and Depression (CRUfAD) at St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney. 

What does an iCBT course involve?

iCBT courses offered by THIS WAY UP contain an average of 6 lessons, which are completed sequentially over 10 – 12 weeks, with some additional reading and practice exercises. 

After an initial questionnaire about current psychological state, TWU directs you to the most appropriate online course for you. This screening assessment can help you gain insight into your mental health and can guide course selection. 

Lessons are presented as an illustrated comic-based character who experiences anxiety and/or depression symptoms, and learns to alleviate these symptoms using iCBT. After completing each lesson, you can download a lesson summary, homework assignments and optional resources. 

Completion of the program is self-paced, with the exception that participants need to wait five days in-between lessons, and complete all lessons within 10-12 weeks.

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Why is Bupa promoting iCBT?

At Bupa, we care about your health, and we know that having the awareness and tools to act early can have a life-changing impact on your mental health and wellbeing.

Around 20 percent of Australians can be affected by mental illness in any year, and of those conditions, anxiety and depression are the most prevalent1. As a health and care partner, Bupa aims to support its members to improve their physical and mental health to ensure they live longer, healthier and happier lives. 

How do I claim my reimbursement?

1. Enter your Bupa membership number when registering for your course

2. When you complete your course, you will receive a certificate of completion by email from TWU. Complete a claims form and email your claims form and certificate of completion to healthenq@bupa.com.au.

3. Bupa will deposit your reimbursement into your nominated bank account

4. If you log in to My Bupa, your claim will appear as a Mental Health and Wellbeing Course

Please note:

  • You can only claim for one course per calendar year (although you are welcome to complete additional courses at your own expense).
  • You can only claim for your course once it is completed.
  • You must commence the course before 4th May 2018 to be eligible for reimbursement
  • Courses need to be completed via the desktop or mobile-friendly website, as reimbursement is not available if using the mobile app.

What happens if I don’t complete the course?

When you register for a TWU course, you receive access to your course for 90 days from the date of registration. After completing the course, you will have access to course materials for another 12 months, which allows you to revise the course material and continue working on applying the skills you have learned.

If you are unable to complete your final lesson within the 90-day access period, you will be withdrawn from the course. This doesn’t mean that you have failed, just that internet treatment may not be the best option for you. If your course is not completed, you will not be able to claim reimbursement from Bupa, and will not gain continued access to course materials for further learning.

Why have I received this email?

Bupa has selected members at random to receive this email.

Having trouble accessing or logging into your This Way Up account?

You can contact This Way Up directly via contact@thiswayupclinic.org or + 61 2 8382 1400 if you are having difficulty with the This Way Up website (including accessing or navigating the website, logging in or accessing your lessons). 

Privacy and confidentiality

Bupa will be made aware that you have participated in a TWU course, when you submit your claims form for reimbursement. This is necessary so that we can pay your claim, however we will not be informed which course you have chosen to participate in, and will not receive any clinical information.

Information provided by Bupa members when registering or using This Way Up may be shared with Bupa as grouped, de-identified data for the purposes of evaluating the operation of the program.  

For full details about our Information Handling Practices, please refer to our Information Handling Policy.  

Additional resources

For more information on anxiety and depression, you may be interested in these articles:

If you are experiencing a crisis or in immediate distress, please dial Triple Zero (000) or contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

References

1 2007 National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing

2 Evidence-based Psychological Interventions in the Treatment of Mental Disorders: A Literature Review (3rd Edition, 2010), https://www.psychology.org.au/Assets/Files/Evidence-Based-Psychological-Interventions.pdf

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