Telemedicine, Teletherapy, and Telemental Health are on the cutting edge of health care service. Most people are familiar with using FaceTime, Zoom, Go To, Webinar, Skype, or other video calling/conferencing applications. You will find Telehealth therapy sessions to be very similar and very convenient to use.
Why STILL Telehealth? Why not in person?
Physicians and other health care providers are usually in a room with their patients for anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes at a time, and many continue to wear masks, thereby limiting their exposure to infectious illnesses like COVID. Dentists, who spend anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour or more with their patients, have always worn masks and eye protection, and they continue to wear them now.
Psychotherapists on the other hand, spend 45-60 minutes in one small room with an individual, a couple, or a family who generally are upset and emoting in some way (crying, talking, etc). While we can wear masks and ask our clients to also, masks during talk therapy simply are not a good option.
The risks are far higher for psychotherapists due to long exposure times in small spaces and also because therapists often do 5-8 sessions a day. If one person is infected and is asymptomatic, the waiting room and therapy room can become places were multiple people can be exposed to COVID and other contagious illnesses.
Like everyone else, we are very eager to return to in person talk therapy. We continue to closely monitor what is happening with COVID as well as what our professional organizations are recommending.
What are the benefits of having video or phone sessions?
- Convenience. If you are unable to attend therapy in person on a regular basis, you are able to “meet” with me virtually and maintain continuity in your therapy.
- Safety. You can see your therapist from the safety of your home environment. No going to another location or risking possible exposure to others.
- Bad weather will not be an impediment. No need to travel in snow or bad storms to make your appointment.
- Time saving. Meeting with your therapist from a remote location means that you will not have to spend time traveling to and from the office.
- More options for scheduling. Subject to availability, sessions before or after regular office hours are possible.
- Many insurance companies are reimbursing for Teletherapy sessions. Check with yours to see what your policy allows for. Due to the Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), most are reimbursing Telehealth in the same way as in person sessions. Please double check with your insurance company. There is likely information on their website or call.
- It’s effective and cost saving. Studies demonstrate the efficacy and positive benefits of teletherapy and that it is as effective as in person therapy.
- Teletherapy sessions may be scheduled through the website in the same way that regular, in person sessions are scheduled. When making the appointment, for location, select “Teletherapy” and then the convenient day and time that works best for you.
- Phone and Video sessions are offered before, during, and after regular office hours, including during weekends and holidays. There is an additional fee for phone and video sessions that occur outside of normal office hours. Check schedule via the Client Portal for availability.
To ensure confidentiality and protect your privacy, video sessions are conducted through a HIPAA compliant and encrypted platform ( “Telehealth by Simple Practice” or “Google Meet”). Sessions can be conducted via one of these free apps that can be downloaded to your phone or tablet. Facetime, Skype, Zoom, and other similar video platforms are NOT permitted for use as they are not HIPAA compliant or encrypted.
If you have any questions about Teletherapy sessions, please contact us through the Contact Page.
Click the Book Now button to schedule a Telehealth appointment.