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Why is an autism assessment so expensive?

Updated: Jul 7, 2023

Ever wondered why assessments are so expensive? Here's the reasons.

I sometimes hear questions and complaints about the cost of an autism assessment. Why is it so expensive.

I hope this will help you understand.

Autism Assessments

  • There are 3 hours of face to face sessions - 2 for the interview and 1 for the session where you receive your report.

  • There are about 2 hours spent coding and scoring the answers from the interview and the other assessments done online.

  • There are about 4 hours or more spent writing the report, the summary letter and making the NDIS recommendations in terms that are suitable for NDIS.

  • The report is not a 'stock letter'. It is an individualised report.

  • That's a total of 9 hours but often more.

  • Assessments have to be purchased for each person.


To become a psychologist takes a minimum of 6 years: a 4 year degree plus 2 years of supervision is the absolute minimum. I have a four year degree, including honours, a 2 year masters degree and am endorsed which took an additional 2 years of supervision. It takes a huge investment of time and money to become qualified to be registered.

Maintaining registration and running a business

In addition to the costs to become registered as a psychologist there are the following costs:

  • professional registration fees to AHPRA

  • professional insurance

  • belonging to my professional association, the Australian Association of Psychologists Inc (AAPi), that I belong to make sure I get the best and most up to date advice to help me continue to be an ethical and up to date psychologist

  • employing Paul as the practice manager so there is someone to answer calls, reply to emails, make appointments and take payments

  • computing equipment and software e.g. subscriptions to MYOB and practice management

  • running the website

  • telephone and internet

  • appointment reminder fees

  • professional clinical supervision

  • undertaking compulsory 30 hours of professional development as required by AHPRA.

  • specialised training to be able use a certain assessment can be thousands of dollars.

  • maintaining my professional library and resources

I hope this helps explain why an assessment is expensive.

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1 Comment

I'm sorry, but none of that explains why its damn near $3000. That's insane. To me greed as the core of this.

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