Teletherapy helpful hints

Hello!  Welcome to my blog.  My name is Patrick Matthews.  I have a Masters Degree in Counseling and I have been in the field of psychology for over 20 years. I have certification and training to do psychotherapy and I am currently doing teletherapy in my private practice. This means that I know about best practice and many of the rules involved in doing therapy through various electronic media and the telephone.  Because of COVID 19 I am exclusively doing teletherapy and will probably be doing it this way for a while.  I find that it not only keeps you and I safe from spreading coronavirus (and other illnesses), it frees up travel time!  I enjoy working from home and you don’t have to drive to my office, you can see me from your home or wherever is convenient for you.  I can get things done around the house and we both don’t have to risk rush hour traffic. 

I use a system that relies on the latest technology.  I have tried out various platforms and telehealth works rather well.  I don’t use Zoom or WhatsApp or Facetime because they can be hacked and are not HIPPA approved.  The teletherapy works on either a smart phone or a laptop.  I find that a smart phone works rather well and is portable.  If you want to wear headphones, this might be helpful.  On the off chance that the video software doesn’t work or your WiFi is out, we can use the telephone as a backup so don’t worry we will still connect.  I will share the link before our session and the link will be in your welcome “packet.”  If the video connection is not made in five minutes I will text you or call you, you are welcome to do the same.  I do charge for missed sessions so keep this in mind.  

I am finding that there are a few additional things I need to let you know before doing teletherapy.  Please, find a private place to talk with me where you are safe and won’t be interrupted.  Some of my clients go out in their car if their house is too crowded.  Whatever works for you. If you have pets, or children or room mates they can be distracting.  Make plans to address this.  Please dress as though you were meeting me at my office.  I’m not doing sessions in my pajamas and neither should you. Our teletherapy sessions are for you and I want you to get the most out of our time together.  Also, many people don’t know this but if you travel to another state and I am not licensed for that state, I cannot hold a session with you.  I am currently licensed for Wisconsin only, so if you go on vacation out of state, please, enjoy your vacation- we will talk when you are back in Wisconsin.  Looking forward to doing teletherapy with you.

Patrick Matthews MS LPC

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