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Telehealth and Online Support
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Telehealth and Online Support with a Melbourne-based Registered Psychologist

What is telehealth?

Telehealth is a delivery of psychological therapy, delivered by our registered psychologists at Positive Wellbeing Psychology. This service is delivered via video conference or phone to allow for a visual and audio link between the client and their psychologist. Our psychologists are here to support clients to set up their telehealth connection to ensure a high-quality video and audio for the clinical service being provided.

 

What does the research tell us about telehealth outcomes?

Did you know research has found therapy via phone or video connection is similar to in-person sessions with a Psychologist. Positive Wellbeing Psychology have put together research findings for your reference.

 

Is online psychology as effective as in-person therapy?

Evidence-based research findings indicate the outcome of therapy via phone or video connection (telehealth) is similar to in-person delivery. Specifically, the research indicated the working alliance, or commonly defined as the therapeutic relationship between the client and psychologist is adequately established in therapy delivered online (Backhaus et al,, 2012).

 

In line with these findings, a systematic review also supported that video consultations were found to be effective in a variety of therapeutic formats and with a diverse range of populations. Telehealth had been found to be associated with ‘good user satisfaction’ and provided similar clinical outcomes to traditional face-to-face psychotherapy (Cook & Doyle, 2015).

 

Based on several research findings, psychological support delivered online has been found to be as effective as face-to-face therapy sessions. One study had gone further to suggest that some clients feel more comfortable due to the fact of reducing feelings of shame and embarrassment when discussing more some challenging issues (Simpson & Read, 2014). We believe this will come down to the client’s preferences and beliefs yet can certainly see that some client would prefer this method of therapy.

Why is telehealth discreet and convenient?  

Our registered psychologists have found telehealth to provide flexibility and convenience to our clients who may otherwise not be able to prioritize their consultations due to long hours in the office, shift work, childcare errands, busy lifestyles, geographical barriers such as rural commutes, or simply due to convenience and to remove the waiting room experience.

 

Our discreet consulting practice provides video or phone consultation based on your preference. Telehealth as a mode of therapy has been adopted to reduce barriers to all Australian’s and empower individuals to reach out to explore positive changes in their life. The video or phone consultation provides a layer of comfort and familiarity in a chosen confidential setting either in your own home, office, hotel or hired space. You can read our FAQ specifically relating to our telehealth consultations here.

 

All telehealth psychological consultations conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic has means that we are helping to reducing the risk of spread. After all our role as psychologists is to assess risk of harm to self and others. With this in mind, we are able to implement additional measures to reduce risk to clients and psychologists, by reducing risk of being exposed to the virus.

 

Am I eligible for a rebate from Medicare or Private Health?

Yes, until the March 2021, the Government has announced Medicare rebates with a GP referral letter and valid Health Care Treatment Plan. You can read more on our FAQ page for fees and rebates here.

What is the ideal setting for my psychological consultation?

We are here to help you set up your telehealth at home set-up and to get it right. There are a number of factors that need to be considered and we discuss a few important ones below:

 

1. The Right Device – Choosing the right technology that is available and will work best for you it so important. We highly recommend using laptops and iPads – this is because they give flexibility and can easily be positioned to suit a task or location.

 

2. Finding Correct Positioning – Finding the right position for your device can make a difference to the level of comfort and ambience set for the session. You may wish to consider factors such as the lighting, background and whether a table or floor space will be needed. Positive Wellbeing Psychology recommend getting super comfy – have a little table close by with a warm tea or coffee present. If you feel that you lose focus in the session and need to be grounded to the present moment – simply wrap your hands around your warm cup of tea! Bring yourself back to the present moment, then continue. Choose an environment that has good lighting so you have clear vision of the psychologist. Do not forget to consider the background in the location you have chosen because it may be visible to the psychologist.

 

3. A Good Location – Determine the best location to suit the goals you are working on, for example home, school, workplace or community location. Regardless of the location you choose, you need to make sure minimal to no disruptions will take place once the session commences. Therefore, letting your partner, children or colleague know that you are on a private (or important!) call is best practice!

 

4. Being Prepared – Positive Wellbeing Psychology will ensure you feel comfortable and prepared to take the initial session in your preferred space, well before the day. However, we still recommend plenty of time before the session to prepare. You may want to consider what resources you need for before the session. These may resources may include any ‘between’ session tasks such as thought diaries, food monitoring records, worksheets or journals!

 

5. Technical Difficulties – Unfortunely, whilst rare with our expert psychologists as we ensure our wi-fi is well connected, technical and other difficulties can happen so take a deep breath and don’t panic. Your psychologist at Positive Wellbeing Psychology will make sure the session runs smoothly. If the video conference drops our then you will receive a phone call on your mobile number (via a private number).

 

6. Digital Resources – Positive Wellbeing Psychology find telehealth via video conference really useful as we can use our digital resources during the session. Using screen-share, you can easily share our PDFs, videos, apps and webpages on your screen. Ask your psychologist to screen-share in your session if you’re a visual learner – our clients have provided positive feedback with this functionality and love to use this during their sessions!

 

7. Minimise Disruption – Choose an environment for the telehealth consultation where you are not likely to be distracted or interrupted. It is important to avoid having children or other people requiring attention during the therapy consultation, turn off phones or other devices not being used for therapy, and choose a location that has minimal noise disturbance. Discuss your concerns and plan openly with your psychologist how to handle any situation where you might be interrupted.

 

8. Make Time Afterwards – Plan for some brief quiet time after each session before returning to your usual tasks. For child and/or young persons – Psychologists will need to consider the potential presence of an adult/parent/carer and how the child’s privacy is to be managed. This may require a discussion with the young person and their parent/carer during the initial session. Confidentiality limitations will be discussed with the young person and their parent/carer.

How can Positive Wellbeing Psychology Help?

At Positive Wellbeing Psychology, we are experienced in providing evidence-based treatment online via video or phone. To enquire about an appointment with Positive Wellbeing Psychology, please complete our Online Contact Form for new clients (click here). We’ll be in touch shortly to answer any of your questions.

Need more immediate help?

If you need immediate help or your life is in danger, please call ‘triple zero’ (000). If you are thinking of harming yourself, it is important to reach out for immediate support. If someone you know is at immediate risk of harm, please also call ‘triple zero’ (000) as a matter of urgency.

 

For more information on immediate supports, please click here.

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