Many of us became familiar with accessing services online or via telehealth during COVID-19. While most service industries have since returned to pre-pandemic times, telehealth appointments remain available, feasible and an increasingly popular option for individuals seeking mental health support.
What are telehealth psychology appointments? The term telehealth refers to psychology sessions that are conducted over the phone or via video platforms such as Teams, Zoom and Coviu.
Telehealth psychology sessions: what is the evidence?
There is an accumulating body of evidence demonstrating the effectiveness of telehealth for a wide range of mental health disorders. A recent systematic review published by Swinburne University (2021) reported that telehealth is an accessible and effective modality for delivering psychotherapy. The study found clients were satisfied with their experience, and therapeutic outcomes were comparable to in-person therapy.
What are the benefits of telehealth psychology sessions?
A major benefit of telehealth psychology services is that they enable more people to access mental health care. With increased access, individuals who are geographically isolated, have mobility problems, or have difficulty with child-care or transportation are able to receive mental health support. Additionally, individuals who are in need of particular or specialised therapies that are not available in their local area can access a larger range of health professionals.
2. Confidentiality and Privacy
For people who may be uncomfortable or have concerns about attending a physical clinic, telehealth may provide a private and completely confidential option. Since telehealth can be accessed from the comfort of one's own home, it can be an entry point for individuals seeking mental health support for the first time. Feeling more relaxed and comfortable in an environment can also enable some people to better connect with the psychologist, potentially increasing the efficacy of the therapy.
3. Convenience and Flexibility
Since the only requirement for telehealth psychology sessions is a reliable internet connection and a device that supports video conferencing and phone calls, they allow for maximal flexibility! This is particularly useful for individuals who have busy schedules or who find it difficult to take time off work, school, or family commitments. Due to the fact that time and distance are no longer issues, therapy can take place when it is convenient for the individual, resulting in fewer cancelled or missed appointments.