Online therapists don’t come easy. Yet, you need to find one that matches your requirements if traditional counselors are not to your liking.
The concept of Internet counseling is relatively new which means you should consider a number of factors. Web therapy is more cost-effective and access can be much easier especially for people who use the Internet frequently.
Technology contributed significantly to its popularity although research is not really extensive compared with traditional therapy sessions. There are multiple benefits from e-counseling.
However, consider these points with care before finally choosing the service offered online:
Is this really an effective platform? Until now, research is not that sufficient to prove virtual therapy by itself is good for all patients in different situations.
Many websites are hyping this type of therapy but claims may not be true or deceptive.
For your protection, only the licensed therapist is allowed to engage in legal practice. This is an assurance that you get psychotherapy based on scientific studies and evidence. Mental health providers must be accredited by the State where they practice. Licensure means the therapist is eligible and obtained adequate training to educate patients. Nearly all state governments provide a web directory of licensed professionals in the healthcare industry.
See to it that the app or program used by the online counselor is protected.
In other words, all the information you divulge must be kept confidential at all times. It’s not appropriate for personal details to be passed on to third parties without written consent from the owner.
If possible, it must be HIPAA-compliant and verify identities of patient and therapist. HIPAA refers to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act which ensures that all sensitive data must be safeguarded.
Payment for Service
A lot of insurance providers cover mental health treatment and substance abuse issues. These include face to face psychotherapy. These healthcare providers will gladly provide receipts that you can file with the insurance company for possible reimbursement.
Unfortunately, Internet counseling is not covered so repayment may be a problem. Check with your agency first if you’re planning to file for claims. If not, you are bound to pay for the full cost of this therapy.
What’s the Outlook?
Many psychologists are looking at these sites and applications with the number of people showing interest in this approach. Research confirms technology can complement long-established processes. The truth is therapists and their patients exchange SMS for reminders and appointments.
New apps are now capable of helping observe and monitor personal moods or feelings. Video conferencing and live streaming offers continuity if patients cannot attend scheduled sessions for as long as these are conducted in real-time.
In some instances, online methods may not apply for some patients. The verdict of some stakeholders is to find a way how Internet therapy can work hand in hand with in-person coaching. At any rate, web-based therapy continues to gain popularity globally.