The coronavirus pandemic has fundamentally changed how healthcare services of all kinds are delivered. Understanding the important role that telehealth can play for Massachusetts residents, Governor Baker issued an unprecedented mandate in mid-March for most Massachusetts insurance companies to fully cover telehealth services so that behavioral treatment remains accessible to residents while in quarantine or experiencing other difficulties in receiving treatment as a result of the pandemic.
Telehealth services uses face-to-face telecommunications over the internet for psychotherapy sessions. At Labyrinth, we use a platform called Thera-Link which is confidential and compliant with HIPAA standards to protect private health information.
There are many benefits for patients receiving telehealth services, including:
- Ease and convenience: patients and providers simply need a computer, webcam, and broadband internet access.
- Increased access: telehealth services provide a connection to quality mental healthcare at a time when traveling to our office is difficult or unadvisable, such as during the pandemic when social distancing is a priority.
- Fewer missed appointments: patients are less likely to run into problems when they can meet from wherever they are.
- Customized care: with our Thera-Link platform, our care specialists are able to focus on how that care is delivered through appropriately-timed assessments, tracking trends and progress over time.
Telehealth services and therapy is a lot like traditional face-to-face therapy appointments. You make an appointment in advance with your therapist, but instead of meeting at our office, you hop on your computer, tablet, or smartphone, and use a secure email link to sign into an online video therapy session
Research suggests that telehealth services are as effective as face-to-face therapy for many common problems typically addressed in an outpatient therapy modality. However, because service is delivered remotely and the advantages provided by the physical presence of a behavioral professional during treatment are not available, we require all telehealth clients to provide emergency contact information so there is a local resource to assist should a crisis or emergency situation arise during treatment.
All of our therapists are well-trained, experienced, and receiving ongoing education and support to improve their use of telehealth technology to deliver outstanding service as the need for this crucial service continues to increase during the COVID-19 crisis. Our goal is to establish the right match between our patients and therapists to ensure that the very best telehealth services are delivered to each patient, safely and effectively.