For the duration of the COVID 19 pandemic, I have suspended office-based therapy sessions and skills training. In my practice, safety is always the top priority. When it is safe to do so, I will return to my office. However, while we are mid-pandemic, I am offering all modes of treatment remotely.
Research demonstrates that telehealth is as effective as face to face psychotherapy. Currently, I am utilizing Zoom for video, OhMD for texting, PsychSurveys for diary cards and Hushmail for encrypted emails. All of these are HIPAA-compliant and secure. Every effort is made to recreate the same warm, non-judging atmosphere clients have come to expect in my office.
Telehealth has potential benefits including easier access to care, continuity of care and the convenience of meeting from a location of your choosing. Of course, there are potential risks to this technology that differ from in-person sessions including interruptions, unauthorized access and technical difficulties that cannot be predicted. It is important to connect from a quiet room, with no interruptions and where your privacy is guaranteed. Before logging in, it seems helpful to restart your computer and avoid having other programs running while using Zoom.
Naturally, confidentiality applies to telehealth sessions. Audio and/or video will not be recorded at any time. Each of us will disable computer and device generated recording to the best of our abilities. Either you or I can discontinue telehealth sessions if either of us believes that the format is no longer adequate for the situation and it would be preferable to move to in-person sessions if possible.