How to Prepare a Patient for Their First Teletherapy Session
The COVID-19 pandemic likely forced your practice to go virtual months ago. Therefore, you’re probably very used to giving teletherapy sessions by now. However, that doesn’t mean new patients know what to expect.
You want to provide all your patients with a teletherapy session that’s truly beneficial, but this won’t happen if new patients aren’t properly prepared. Here are a few tips to share with them before their first session, so they can get the most from their time with you.
Obviously, patients know they’ll need a computer, tablet, or smartphone for their teletherapy session. However, some might not really think about the device they’ll use, until it’s time for their appointment. Giving them a quick, friendly reminder that they’ll need the latest version of their chosen browser—i.e., Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Safari—will likely prompt them to decide which device to use, so they can make any necessary browser updates.
Some videoconferencing platforms require a software download—i.e., Zoom. If your platform of choice is one of them, be sure to tell patients ahead of time. This will allow them to get the technical aspects out of the way before the appointment begins, so they don’t have to waste valuable time on these issues.
Patients share intimate details about their lives in teletherapy sessions. Ease their minds by letting them know you’ll be conducting the session from a private, confidential space.
This will make them feel more comfortable about opening up, and will likely encourage them to start thinking about the space they’ll use for their session. For some, it will just be a matter of going into an empty room and shutting the door, but others in smaller living spaces might need to get a little more creative.
It’s impossible to have a productive patient session, if you can’t hear what they’re saying. Remind patients to check the audio on their device prior to your meeting, to avoid any issues during the session. You’ll also want to politely remind them to choose a quiet space for their session.
This will involve turning the television off, switching their phone ringer to silent, and choosing a spot in the house away from any exterior noise. Patients with young children will also need to arrange for childcare, so they can give you their full concentration.
Having a face-to-face connection is very important in a therapy session. Video conferencing technology makes this possible, but not without proper lighting. For some patients, this will be their first-ever video conferencing chat, so give them a few tips to achieve good lighting.
This might involve not placing a light source behind them and positioning themselves near a natural light source. These tips might seem basic to you, but they can make a world of difference to someone without much video conferencing experience.
Contact PsychPros for Your Next Opportunity
If you are searching for a new position, finding the right fit can be more challenging than ever, but you don’t have to navigate the process alone. PsychPros is seeking experienced Licensed Therapists for remote counseling / teletherapy opportunities in your state and across the country. To learn more about how we can help connect you to a remote counseling position, contact us today at (513) 651-9500 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.